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Badme (Tigrinya: ባድመ, Arabic: بادم‎) is a town in the Gash-Barka region of Eritrea. Control of the town was at the centre of the Eritrean–Ethiopian border conflict, which lasted from the end of the Eritrean–Ethiopian War in 1998 to the signing of a joint statement at the Eritrea–Ethiopia summit in 2018, 20 years after the conflict started.


Badme is located in Eritrea
Location in Eritrea [1]
Coordinates: 14°43′34″N 37°48′12″E / 14.72611°N 37.80333°E / 14.72611; 37.80333Coordinates: 14°43′34″N 37°48′12″E / 14.72611°N 37.80333°E / 14.72611; 37.80333
CountryEritrea Eritrea
RegionEritrea Gash-Barka
 • Total1,563

Disputed territoryEdit

The boundaries of Ethiopia and Eritrea follow a frontier defined by the Treaty of Addis Ababa, which ruled Eritrea as a colony at the time.[2] However, the frontier near Badme was poorly defined in the treaty, and since Eritrea became a separate nation in 1993, each nation has disputed where the boundary actually runs. The town of Badme was ceded[citation needed] by the TPLF (the predecessor of the EPRDF, Ethiopia's currently ruling party) to the EPLF (the predecessor of the PFDJ, Eritrea's ruling organization) in November 1977.[3][page needed]

In 2000, Eritrea and Ethiopia signed the Algiers Agreement, which forwarded the border dispute to a Hague boundary commission. In the agreement, both parties agreed in advance to comply with the ruling of the border commission. In 2002, the commission ruled on where the boundary ran, placing Badme inside Eritrean territory.

Despite initially agreeing to abide by the terms of the Algiers Agreement, Ethiopia refused to withdraw to the border established by the Eritrea–Ethiopia Boundary Commission and rejected its ruling. As a result, thousands of internally displaced people have remained in refugee camps and the threat of renewed war continues.

Other disputed areas along the Eritrean–Ethiopian border include Tsorona-Zalambessa and Bure.

Ethiopian withdrawalEdit

In June 2018, following a meeting of the executive council of the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), the ruling party in Ethiopia, the government of Ethiopia announced plans to withdraw from Badme and cede it to Eritrea.[4]


In 2005, Badme residents voted in Ethiopian elections for the first time since Eritrean independence in 1991.[5][6][7]


The Central Statistical Agency of Ethiopia in 2005 reported that this town has an estimated total population of 1,563, of whom 834 are men and 729 are women.[8] The Ethiopian government considered Badme as one of four towns in Tahtay Adiyabo woreda.


  • Abbink, Jan (2003). "Badme and the Ethio-Eritrean border: the challenge of demarcation in the post-war period". Africa: Rivista trimestrale di studi e documentazione dell'Istituto italiano per l'Africa e l'Oriente. 58 (2): 219–231. JSTOR 40761693.
  • Jonathan Wilkenfeld; Kathleen Young; David Quinn (7 May 2007). Mediating International Crises. Routledge. ISBN 978-1-135-99479-2.


  1. ^ CIA - The World Factbook - Eritrea
  2. ^ Ullendorff, Edwakd (October 1967). "The Anglo-Ethiopian treaty of 1902". Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies. 30 (3): 641–654. doi:10.1017/S0041977X00132100. ISSN 1474-0699. Retrieved 4 September 2018.
  3. ^ Kendie, Daniel (2005). The Five Dimensions of the Eritrean Conflict 1941-2004: Deciphering the Geo-Political Puzzle. Signature Book Printing. ISBN 1-932433-47-3.
  4. ^ Ashine, Argaw (5 June 2018). "Ethiopia to withdraw from disputed border region". The EastAfrican. Nairobi. Retrieved 7 June 2018.
  5. ^ Abbink 2003, p. 223: "In various UN documents, Badme is also mentioned as an Ethiopian place and as a recipient of food aid. People of Badme voted in all Ethiopian elections after 1991. Another indication is that until the moment of the outbreak of war in May 1998, Eritrean currency (the naqfa, introduced a year earlier) was never in use in Badme, only the Ethiopian birr."
  6. ^ Jonathan Wilkenfeld, Kathleen Young & David Quinn 2007, p. 61.
  7. ^ Ethiopian general elections, January 2005 - Sudan Tribune
  8. ^ CSA 2005 National Statistics, Table B.4 Archived November 23, 2006, at the Wayback Machine

External linksEdit