November 28, 2021

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Abiy Ahmed, Nobel Peace Laureate Ethiopia PM On Frontline, Rebels Near Capital


Addis Ababa:

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on Wednesday reportedly joined the entrance line where by authorities forces are battling rebels from the Tigray region, prompting US-led international calls for a diplomatic solution and immediate ceasefire to the conflict.

The preventing in the north of Africa’s 2nd-most populous country has killed 1000’s of people and compelled hundreds of thousands into famine-like ailments.

Foreign governments have explained to their citizens to leave amid the escalating war, and fears the Tigrayan rebels could march on the capital Addis Ababa.

Abiy, winner of the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize, “is now major the counter-offensive” and “has been offering management from the battlefield as of yesterday,” Fana Broadcasting Corporate reported.

It was not distinct where by Abiy, a former radio operator in the military services who rose to lieutenant-colonel, experienced deployed.

State media did not broadcast photos of him in the discipline, and officers have not responded to requests for specifics about his whereabouts.

Addressing experiences of Abiy at the entrance, the US Point out Department late Wednesday warned “there is no armed forces remedy” to Ethiopia’s civil war.

“We urge all events to refrain from inflammatory and bellicose rhetoric, to use restraint, regard human legal rights, enable humanitarian obtain, and shield civilians,” a State Division spokesperson mentioned.

A working day previously Washington’s specific envoy for the Horn of Africa, Jeffrey Feltman, mentioned that “nascent development” risked being “outpaced by the armed service escalation by the two sides”.

Other overseas envoys also have been frantically pushing for a ceasefire, although there have been handful of signals a breakthrough is coming.

On Wednesday UN main Antonio Guterres termed for a swift conclusion to the battling, responses produced while on a take a look at to Colombia to mark the fifth anniversary of a peace offer among the governing administration and previous FARC rebels.

“The peace procedure in Colombia inspires me to make an urgent enchantment currently to the protagonists of the conflict in Ethiopia for an unconditional and speedy ceasefire to save the place,” he reported.

The war erupted in November 2020 when Abiy despatched troops into Tigray to topple its ruling party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF).

He claimed the shift was in response to TPLF attacks on federal army camps and promised a swift victory, but by late June the rebels experienced retaken most of Tigray, together with its funds Mekele.

Given that then, the TPLF has pushed into neighbouring Amhara and Afar regions, and this week it claimed to have seized a town just 220 kilometres (135 miles) from Addis Ababa.

New recruits

Abiy’s announcement Monday that he would deploy to the front “has impressed quite a few to… sign up for the survival campaign”, Fana said Wednesday.

Hundreds of new recruits took component in a ceremony held in their honour Wednesday in the capital’s Kolfe district.

As officials corralled sheep and oxen into vehicles certain for the north, the recruits broke into patriotic tracks and chants.

“When a leader leaves his chair… and his throne it is to rescue his place,” Tesfaye Sherefa, a 42-year-previous driver, informed AFP.

Feyisa Lilesa, a distance runner and Olympic silver medallist, explained to condition media the rebels’ advance offered “a great option” to protect the nation.

The marathon runner received political prominence by boosting and crossing his arms as he completed the marathon at the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro — a gesture of solidarity with fellow ethnic Oromos killed whilst protesting abuses dedicated during nearly a few decades of TPLF rule.

Exodus

Even as it rallies citizens to combat, Abiy’s federal government insists the TPLF’s gains have been overstated, criticising what it describes as sensationalist media protection and alarmist safety advisories from Western embassies.

The war has induced a humanitarian disaster, with accounts of massacres and mass rapes, and on Wednesday the United Nations expressed be concerned in excess of reviews of significant-scale displacement from western Tigray, where by the US has beforehand warned of ethnic cleansing.

“Tigray zonal authorities report of 8,000 new arrivals, possibly up to 20,000,” the UN refugee company UNHCR reported, including that it could not promptly corroborate the figures.

Quite a few witnesses have advised AFP of mass roundups of Tigrayan civilians in western Tigray in latest days.

Amhara forces occupied the fiercely contested region a calendar year in the past, with Amhara officers accusing the TPLF of illegally annexing it a few many years before.

As Amhara civilians have poured in more than the previous year, Tigrayans have fled in the tens of hundreds — possibly west into Sudan or east, further into Tigray.

(Besides for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV workers and is released from a syndicated feed.)



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