Nov. 14 (UPI) -- The United Nations Security Council unanimously lifted sanctions against Eritrea Wednesday that lasted for nearly a decade.
The 15-member council adopted Resolution 2444, calling for an end to the nine-year-old embargo on the impoverished country on the Horn of Africa as it rebuilds relations with neighbor and former enemy Ethiopia.
The two countries agreed to a peace deal in July, ending a stalemate following war between the nations from 1998 to 2000, in which an estimated 100,000 people were killed.
The United Nations first imposed restrictions on Eritrea in 2009 after accusations that it supported armed terrorist groups, including Somalia's al-Shabab.
The Eritrean government has criticized that designation as baseless, and U.N. investigators say there is no evidence Eritrea has supported terrorism in the past five years.
The relief move Wednesday covers the embargo, travel bans and asset freezes, and the Security Council renewed its arms embargo against Somalia.
We welcome the arms and other targeted embargoes on Eriteria been lifted with our collective request. Thanks to the @UN Security Council for this helplful and timely intervention. The Horn of Africa region is swiftly progressing towards partnership and economic cooperation.— Mohamed Farmaajo (@M_Farmaajo) November 14, 2018
The removal of sanctions could help Eritrea and its population of 3.2 million more actively participate in the global banking system, and could attract foreign investment, Bloomberg reported. In recent years, Eritrea has been a major source of migrants escaping to Europe and neighboring countries.
The U.N. action was celebrated in Eritrea, where President Mohammed Farmaajo noted that his region of Africa is "swiftly progressing towards partnership and economic cooperation."