The positive ending to this meeting, however, was not enough to cause Khartoum to abandon the EIJM or dissuade Asmara from increasing its political and military support for the Sudanese opposition.
The EIJM currently poses no serious military threat to Asmara, which possesses one of the best-trained and battle-hardened military establishments in sub-Saharan Africa.
Asmara has sought to persuade Khartoum of the futility and, more seriously, the irresponsibility of supporting the EIJM given the delicate religious and ethnic makeup of Eritrea.
Perhaps to discredit a major political opponent, Asmara has also claimed that former members of the ELF--the EPLF's main political rival during the liberation struggle and in the post-independence period--belong to the EIJM.
First, the EIJM was created at a time when the United States and Israel opposed Eritrean independence, and several years before Washington had granted recognition to Eritrea or Asmara had agreed to establish diplomatic relations with Israel.
Unlike the Islamist movements in Egypt for example, the EIJM can hardly be classified as an indigenous movement that has built grass-roots support inside of Eritrea.
To take Asmara's argument a step further, the EIJM would not exist except for the support of the NIF in Khartoum.
security assistance to Eritrea will likely remain limited given the absence of what Washington perceives as a mayor external security threat and so long as the EIJM poses only a very low-level internal security threat to Eritrea.