Almost all participants were branded in an attire that has the widely used photo of Eritrean and Ethiopian painted handshake. It bore the inscription « One Love » below.
Capital of Ethiopia Addis Ababa was flooded by runners over the weekend. Runners running in support of the peace deal signed by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and his Eritrean counterpart, Isaias Afwerki in July 2018.
Thousands of nationals from both sides cheered as they ran a 10 km race, which is the first major sporting event since the signing of a peace agreement in Asmara.
This race saw persons of all ages and from all walks of life line up and run to support the deal which has reunited peoples on both sides of the border after decades of hostilities.
“I am very happy, there is nothing more (important) than love, reconciliation and happiness in this world, I am very happy,” Mohammed Ahmed, a participant told reporters.
Almost all participants were branded in an attire that has the widely used photo of Eritrean and Ethiopian painted handshake. It bore the inscription “One Love” below.
Flags and photos of the two leaders were also prominent throughout the race.
“I am happy with the opening of the border, my brother came back to Ethiopia after 20 years and we met,” Chalachew Addis, another participant added.
Eritrea, formerly a part of Ethiopia declared its independence in 1993 after three decades of war. The two countries fought a war between 1998 and 2000, which killed some 80,000 people, mainly as a result of a border conflict.
The coming to power in April of Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, a 42-year-old reformer, changed the situation. It launched a reconciliation process, which led to a peace agreement in July.