The Djibouti–Eritrea boundary extends for approximately 110 kilometers from the tripoint with Ethiopia on the mountain of Mousa Ali to the Red Sea coast. The boundary was delimited in descriptive terms in protocols between France (the colonial power in Djibouti) and Italy (Eritrea) in 1900 and 1901. The western half of the boundary was defined with precision and demarcated in 1954–55 and appears uncontested. However, the eastern half of the boundary is disputed, with Eritrea claiming a 776 square kilometer wedge of territory to the south of the 1901 line based on a 1935 agreement between France and Italy which was signed but never ratified. In 2008, armed clashes occurred in the vicinity of Ras Doumeira after Djibouti accused Eritrean forces of occupying territory on the Djiboutian side of the 1901 boundary. Mediation by Qatar prevented the conflict from escalating, but the territorial dispute remains unresolved.

Map showing the land boundary between Djibouti and Eritrea

For access to the full Djibouti–Eritrea Boundary Brief, contact us.

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