Sudan said on Monday it would recall its ambassador to Addis Ababa for “consultations” following allegations that the Ethiopian army had executed seven captured Sudanese soldiers and one civilian.
“In an act contrary to all laws and customs of war and international humanitarian law, the Ethiopian army executed seven Sudanese soldiers and one citizen who were in their captivity,” the Sudanese armed forces said late on Sunday.
The army said “this treacherous act will not pass”, promising to respond to “this cowardly behavior”.
Tensions have escalated in recent years, sparking sporadic armed clashes over the Al-Fashakah border strip, which lies close to Ethiopia’s troubled Tigray region.
There was no immediate response from Ethiopia.
A Sudanese military official, who asked not to be named, told AFP that the soldiers were taken prisoner in a border area near the Al-Fashak area.
On Monday, Sudan’s foreign ministry said it would “immediately withdraw its ambassador to Ethiopia for consultations” and file a complaint with the UN Security Council.
“The Ethiopian Ambassador in Khartoum will also be called to brief him on Sudan’s condemnation of this inhuman behavior,” the ministry said in a statement.
Relations between Khartoum and Addis Ababa have soured over Al-Fashaki, a fertile strip long cultivated by Ethiopian farmers but claimed by Sudan, causing sporadic fatal clashes between the Sudanese and Ethiopian sides.
Tensions escalated further after fighting broke out in Tigray in November 2020, causing tens of thousands of refugees to flee to Sudan.
Since then, Khartoum and Addis Ababa have engaged in a tense verbal skirmish, exchanging accusations of violence and territorial violations.
The border dispute is fueling wider tensions in the region, including over the controversial Blue Nile Dam in Ethiopia.
Sudan and Egypt, both downstream countries, opposed the Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam and pushed for an agreement to fill its reservoir and operate the dam.
In February, Khartoum and Cairo criticized Addis Ababa for its unilateral decision to start generating electricity at the dam.