The British Foreign Secretary, Doctor David Owen, said on Friday (21 April) most African nations regarded the war in Eritrea as a very different issue to the war between Ethiopia and Somalia.
SV Dr. Owen, British Foreign Secretary, talks at press conference.
TRANSCRIPT: SEQ. 1: OWEN: "The United Nations did, in the early fifties, form a view on this whole question of Eritrea, but generally the African group in the U.N. prefer, before an issue comes to the United Nations, to have been able to discuss it in the form of the O.A.U. and it's very rarely worth while to try and force an issue to the United Nations against the African view, if they've previously wanted it to be discussed in the...within the O.A.U. I've found in southern Africa, from a number of countries, some concern about the Eritrea situation...that whereas they had supported the maintenance and integrity of the territorial boundaries of Ethiopia, that they were worried, and did see this as a different issue from the Somalian-Ethiopian dispute, the problem of Eritrea. And I think that you know generally the non-aligned world might well be very unsympathetic to a military solution to a problem which I think they would wish to see negotiated."
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Background: The British Foreign Secretary, Doctor David Owen, said on Friday (21 April) most African nations regarded the war in Eritrea as a very different issue to the war between Ethiopia and Somalia. At a news conference in London, Doctor Owen said the non-aligned world wanted to see a negotiated settlement of the Eritrean problem, not a solution imposed by military force.