Ethiopia predicts final victory 'within days'

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The Independent Online

Ethiopia predicted yesterday that its two-year war with Eritrea would be over in days after the capture of positions along the central front.

Ethiopia predicted yesterday that its two-year war with Eritrea would be over in days after the capture of positions along the central front.

At dawn Ethiopian troops attacked the heavily defended Zalambessa area and by the afternoon Addis Ababa said its forces had seized the main Eritrean command posts. Eritrea did not confirm the loss of the posts but Ethiopian claims have been reliable since the offensive began two weeks ago. Ethiopia is now estimated to control almost half of Eritrea and has at least 100,000 troops in the country. If they continue their advance they will have to push through miles of mountainous terrain in what could be some of the bloodiest fighting of the conflict.

Yesterday's offensive surprised observers, who had expected an attack from the west instead of the south. But Ethiopia has used surprise tactics and superior air firepower to great advantage in the war.

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