By YonasAsefa

Forty-six Ethiopian doctors left Addis Abeba for Eritrea’s capital Asmara, for volunteer work days after Eritreablocked entry for Ethiopians at one of the border crossings that opened this year.

Ethiopian Ambassador to Eritrea RedwanHussien welcomed the doctors’ team comprised of 39 health officers and five specialists, said Ministry of foreign affairs on Monday in a statement sent to The Daily Monitor.

Dr. Lia Tadesse, State Minister of Health, led the team, whose time of stay is yet to be disclosed.

Officials said their mission is to further strengthen the ties between the peoples of the two sisterly countries after the neighbors ended a long military standoff and restored relations.

This is happened on a week that Eritrea decides for Ethiopian citizens and Ethiopia-licensed vehicles travelling to Eritrea from the Ethiopian town of Rama to have “permits” to enter into its boarder.

Those using a crossing in Zalambessa were asked the same, said Liya Kassa, spokeswoman for the regional administration in the Tigray region which borders Eritrea.

“The restrictions have only been imposed on the Eritrean side,” she said. “We did not receive any prior notice.”

It was not clear why Ethiopians were being prevented from entering at the Zalambessa crossing, which has been shut since Wednesday. 

The crossing opened in September, after the countries agreed to remove their troops as part of a reconciliation process.

Thousands of people have crossed since. Trade has flourished and families separated since war broke out between Ethiopia and Eritrea in 1998 have reunited.

Residents near boarder area say Eritreans were being permitted to enter Eritrea, and Ethiopians were being allowed to leave. (Daily Monitor)