Appeal to the Nobel Committee: Remove PM Abiy’s Peace Prize

Eritrea Focus

 

2 Thorpe Close, Ladbroke Grove

London, W10 5XL

United Kingdom

Email: info@eritrea-focus.org

Website: www.eritrea-focus.org

1 December 2020

The Noble Foundation, Sturegatan 14, Stockholm,  Sweden

 

Dear Members of the Nobel Peace Prize Committee,

As the Chairperson of Eritrea Focus[1] and on behalf of our supporters worldwide we are writing to ask you to rescind the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize from Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on the basis of his failure to secure a comprehensive peace with his neighbour Eritrea and to bring peace to his own country—the promise of which was your explicit reasoning for awarding him this high honour. Instead, he made an alliance with Eritrea and a regional state within Ethiopia—Amhara—to wage a war against another state and has revealed himself to be the utter antithesis of a peace-maker. Barring such a step, which we understand is unprecedented, we ask that you censure the awardee for his actions and use your good offices to call for peace before this crisis worsens further. Many thousands of lives hang in the balance.

When Prime Minister Abiy received the Nobel Peace Prize only 12 months ago, he accepted it “on behalf of Africans and citizens of the world for whom the dream of peace has often turned into a nightmare of war.”  He added, “War is the epitome of hell for all involved and I know because I was there”. On 4 November 2020, Prime Minister Abiy launched a full-scale war on his own people, ostensibly over a single incident he blames on the Tigryans but transparently part of a long-planned, highly sophisticated, multipronged military offensive designed to displace the Tigray state leadership—a goal that Prime Minister Abiy’s partner in ‘peace’, Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki, had been voicing support for a long time and certainly since 2018.

Moreover, this is a conflict that could have been avoided at almost any time in recent months if there had been both the will and the commitment to peacefully resolve the issues dividing Ethiopia’s Federal Government from the state of Tigray and, not incidentally, those dividing the Tigrayan and Amhara states, and those still festering between Tigray and Eritrea, all of which contributed to the current crisis, and all of which were foreseeable.

Awol Allo, who nominated the Prime Minister for his Nobel prize, said his recent actions laid bare his “shallow, showman politics and a problematic notion of national unity” at odds with the complexities of accommodating more than 80 ethno-linguistic groups.

This war, unless halted immediately, could have a catastrophic consequence for the people of the region. Both in terms of the threat of Ethiopia breaking up, as highlighted by the US Institute of Peace and the threat to the harvest in northern Ethiopia, which could lead to a famine on a scale not seen since 1984 – 85.

The Norwegian Nobel Committee has called on all parties “to end the escalating violence and to solve disagreements and conflicts by peaceful means.”  The Committee can go further, and in revoking the Prize show the Prime Minister that his relationship with the world will be altered by war, and that his attempts to cover up the conflict by restricting access to information has failed.

The situation is escalating rapidly and the Nobel Committee should support the African Union initiative which called upon three African elder statesmen, the former presidents of Liberia, Mozambique and South Africa, to mediate between the Federal Government and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, to end the conflict in Tigray. This initiative was endorsed by the President of Ethiopia, Sahle-Work Zewde of Ethiopia and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa, who is the current chair of the African Union.

Thank you.

Yours faithfully

Habte Hagos

Enclosure: War in Ethiopia – Additional Briefing

[1] Eritrea Focus is an association of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs), human rights organisations, exile and refugee groups and individuals concerned with the gross abuses of human rights in Eritrea.


War in Ethiopia – Briefing

Key Points

  • On 22nd November 2020, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed announced a 72-hour deadline for the Tigray’s fighters to surrender. Colonel Dejene Tsegaye, a military spokesman, told the state-run Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation. “We want to send a message to the public in Mekelle (main city in Tigray) to save themselves from any artillery attacks. The junta is now shielding itself within the public and the public must say to them ‘don’t get me killed…After that, there will be no mercy”.[1]
    • Susan Rice, former United States Ambassador to the United Nations, indicated on Twitter that these attacks would amount to war crimes.[2]
  • There are reports that a genocide may be taken place as Federal and regional Amhara forces are reported to attack Tigrayan civilians en masse.[3]
  • According to a number of diplomats Abiy is widely believed to have coordinated his assault on Tigray with Isaias Afwerki, the autocratic leader of Eritrea. Tigrayan forces have fired rockets across the border into neighbouring Eritrea, after claiming Ethiopian soldiers were using an Eritrean airport to attack Tigray. The Governments of Eritrea and Ethiopia deny that they are coordinating attacks on Tigray, but reports indicate that Abiy is receiving considerable support from Isaias. [4] [5]
  • More than 40,000 have now crossed into Sudan through the Hamdayet border in Kassala State, the Lugdi in Gedaref State and a new location further south at Aderafi border where Ethiopian refugees started crossing over the weekend. The speed of new arrivals “overwhelming the current capacity to provide aid.[6]
  • On 20 November, South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa, in his capacity as the African Union chairman, announced the appointment of three former presidents to broker talks to end the conflict. Ethiopia has rejected the offer because it sees the operation as an internal “law enforcement” mission.
  • The United Arab Emirates, an influential ally of the Ethiopian government, said it was concerned about the conflict and that it was making contacts around Africa and the world to try to end it.[7]

Background Information

The UNHCR has warned of a “full-scale humanitarian crisis” unfolding in Ethiopia, with 4,000 people a day, mostly children, fleeing the fighting in Tigray.

More than 40,000 have now crossed into Sudan through the Hamdayet border in Kassala State, the Lugdi in Gedaref State and a new location further south at Aderafi border where Ethiopian refugees started crossing over the weekend. The speed of new arrivals “overwhelming the current capacity to provide aid”.[8]

Last year, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front split from Mr. Abiy’s governing coalition. In June, the speaker of the upper house of Parliament, who is from Tigray, resigned in protest when the federal government postponed elections, claiming the pandemic made elections too dangerous.

Matters came to a head after the region pressed ahead with its own elections, in defiance of a delay ordered by the federal government, and said it no longer recognised Mr Abiy as a legitimate leader given his mandate has expired.

“Any decision by the House of Federation to stop or interrupt the election of Tigray will be tantamount to a declaration of war,” read a statement from the Tigray State Council, referring to the upper house of parliament and the central government’s position that the poll is illegal.

Prime Minster Abiy told the UN and other partners that he would not sit down with rebellious leaders from Tigray until it had restored the rule of law.

Both sides in the conflict have been accused of war crimes, including a massacre reported by Amnesty International in which scores of civilians were said to have been hacked to death, possibly by pro-Tigray militia groups.[9]

Michelle Bachelet, the UN’s high commissioner for human rights said “If confirmed as having been deliberately carried out by a party to the current fighting, these killings of civilians would of course amount to war crimes.”

According to a number of diplomats Abiy is widely believed to have coordinated his assault on Tigray with President Isaias Afwerki. Tigrayan forces have fired rockets across the border into neighbouring Eritrea, after claiming Ethiopian soldiers were using an Eritrean airport to attack Tigray. The Governments of Eritrea and Ethiopia deny that they are coordinating attacks on Tigray, but reports from journalists indicate that Prime Minister Abiy is receiving considerable support from President Isaias. [10] [11]

Prime Minister Abiy has claimed that the TPLF have been manufacturing Eritrean military uniforms in order to blame attacks on Eritrea. The communications shutdown and Eritrea’s ban on diplomats from traveling outside the capital makes it difficult to verify Eritrea’s involvement.

Ethiopian leaders should refrain from drawing their neighbours into their dispute. Sudan has already seen over 40,000 people flee from Ethiopia.[12] A new refugee crisis could engulf neighbouring countries, which already host sizable refugee or displaced populations. Ethiopia itself has 1.8 million displaced people within its borders.

Withdrawing troops from the peacekeeping mission in Somalia will equally destabilise the region and the vacuum could lead to terrorist groups expanding across the Horn of Africa.

An international mediator is urgently needed to deescalate the situation. It seems that for now Prime Minster Abiy has refused private attempts at mediating and will not accept anything other than total victory over Tigray and the TPLF.[13]

Ethiopia is the second largest country in Africa with 110 million people and more than 80 ethnolinguistic groups. It is by far the most important power in the Horn of Africa. The threat of Ethiopia breaking up, as highlighted by the US Institute of Peace report[14] and the threat to the harvest in northern Ethiopia could lead to a famine on a scale not seen since 1984 – 85. Instability could spill out across the region and destabilise what was one of Africa’s most promising economic development stories. As Ethiopia is currently the leading Troop Contributing Country to the United Nations and the African Union peacekeeping missions in Sudan, South Sudan and Somalia, its collapse would also significantly impact the efforts by both to mitigate and resolve others conflicts in the Horn of Africa.

In 2018 Prime Minister Abiy initiated reform, including freeing thousands of political prisoners, unbanning rebel groups and making peace with neighbouring Eritrea, gaining international acclaim, including a Nobel peace prize. But in the past year, Abiy’s leadership has been defined by reports of extrajudicial killings, imprisoning political opponents and internet shutdowns. Even before the current conflict there were more than 1.8 million internally displaced Ethiopians[15].

Since coming to power the Prime Minister has sought to push through liberal economic reforms while stressing Ethiopia’s national identity in a way that critics say threatens the autonomy of the ethnic-based states in the country’s federal system.

The tension between the federal and regional government reflects a “power struggle between Abiy and Tigrayan elites” who once led Ethiopia’s ruling coalition, said William Davison, senior analyst at Crisis Group, who has been deported from Ethiopia for voicing criticism of the government’s actions.

To the Tigrayan leadership — as well as many from other ethnic groups, including Mr Abiy’s Oromo — the Prime Minister’s emphasis on national unity undermines a federal system that guarantees significant autonomy for ethnically defined territories, such as Tigray, Oromia and Amhara. An August survey by Afrobarometer showed Ethiopians were split over the right of the regions to self-determination.

Under a 1995 constitutional amendment the 10 autonomous regions are allowed to speak their own language and practise their own customs, and are legally able to secede.[16] To complicate things, the EPRDF was dominated by Tigrayans, who make up only 6 per cent of Ethiopia’s population.

“People have widely divergent perspectives on what Ethiopia is, and whether they should continue as one state,” said Semir Yusuf of the Institute for Security Studies in Addis Ababa.[17]

The Tigray People’s Liberation Front dominated Ethiopia for almost three decades after it ousted the country’s long-time dictator, Col. Mengistu Haile Mariam, in 1991. The group was led by Meles Zenawi, who came from Tigray and ruled Ethiopia from 1991 until his death in 2012.

Although Tigray population is small in proportion to Ethiopia’s estimated 110 million people, it acquired outsized political clout and prosperity. Even now, Tigray boasts some of Ethiopia’s best roads and telecommunications, not to mention well-equipped security forces.

Last year, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front split from Mr. Abiy’s governing coalition after the Prime Minster dissolved it into a new organization under a single, unified leadership called the Prosperity Party.

Matters came to a head after the Tigray Regional Administration pressed ahead with its own elections in August, in defiance of a one-year delay ordered by the federal government, and said it no longer recognised Mr. Abiy as a legitimate leader given his mandate has expired.

“Any decision by the House of Federation to stop or interrupt the election of Tigray will be tantamount to a declaration of war,” read a statement from the Tigray State Council, referring to the upper house of parliament and the central government’s position that the poll is illegal.

Abiy ejected the Tigray elections and imposed tight economic sanctions on the state in reprisal, which Tigrayan leaders denounced as an act of war. At that, Prime Minister Abiy told the UN and other partners that he would not sit down with rebellious leaders from Tigray until he had restored the rule of law setting the stage for a military conflict.

 

Current Conflict

The UNHCR has warned of a “full-scale humanitarian crisis” unfolding in Ethiopia, with more than 4,000 people a day, many of them children, fleeing the fighting in Tigray.

More than 40,000 have now crossed into Sudan through the Hamdayet border in Kassala State, the Lugdi in Gedaref State and a new location further south at Aderafi border where Ethiopian refugees started crossing over the weekend and the exodus shows no sign of ending. The speed of new arrivals is “overwhelming the current capacity to provide aid,” the U.N. refugee agency said.[18]

Tigray’s regional special forces are led by senior Tigrayan officers forced into retirement by Abiy, plus a standing body of reserve special forces made up of military-trained militia and armed farmers. Analysts estimate that together have an estimated total of up to 250,000 armed fighters, 20,000 of which are trained commandos.[19]

Tigray has some of the most experienced fighters in Ethiopia because of the long war with Eritrea on the border. The TPLF has taken control of half the soldiers from the five divisions of the Ethiopian National Defence Forces (ENDF).

For its part, Ethiopia has mobilised much of the Ethiopian National Defence Force (ENDF) for the multi-pronged operation and launched attacks from the south and west as well as for within the neighbouring country of Eritrea. Tigray authorities claim that Eritrean forces shelled Tigray positions in support of ENDF ground attacks, which also involved Amhara militias from that regional state in what appears to be a three-way alliance against the Tigrayan government and the TPLF.

Amnesty International has said that it “confirmed the massacre of a very large number of civilians, who appear to have been day labourers in no way involved in the ongoing military offensive. This is a horrific tragedy whose true extent only time will tell as communication in Tigray remains shut down.”[20]

Amnesty International blamed this incident on Tigray forces, but Tigrayan refugees entering Sudan say it was carried out by undisciplined Amhara militias.

The latest news from the field indicates that Amhara militias have taken control over two disputed districts of Tigray—Wolkeit in the northwest and Raya/Kobo in the southeast—and are administering them as part of the State of Amhara.

Meanwhile, Eritrean soldiers and security agents have reportedly entered at least two of the refugee camps in western Tigray (Shimelba and Hitsats), alongside ENDF forces, and threaten to arrest and forcibly repatriate some of the Eritrean refugees living there.

At the same time, the conflict has caused a backlash against ethnic Tigrayans across Ethiopia. Tigrayan officers are being disarmed and Tigrayans across government structures are being targeted; in the federal police, serving officers told us, Tigrayans have been asked to take leave; and even in the African Union Mission in Somalia, which fights al-Shabab, two senior officers said that more than 200 Tigrayan officers have had their guns confiscated. Ethiopian police visited an office of the United Nations’ World Food Programme (WFP) in Amhara region to request a list of ethnic Tigrayan staff.[21]

In a statement issued by Prime Minister Abiy over the weekend, the Ethiopian leader is warning residents of Mekele that the city will come under heavy artillery fire if its leaders do not surrender and that civilians who remain there will pay the price.

Thus, the Tigrayan people are in imminent danger, as are Eritrean refugees living among them.

An international mediator is urgently needed to deescalate the situation. It seems that for now Abiy has refused private attempts at mediating and will not accept anything other than total victory over Tigray and the TPLF.[22]

According to a number of diplomats Abiy is widely believed to have coordinated his assault on Tigray with Eritrea. Tigrayan forces have fired rockets across the border into neighbouring Eritrea, after claiming Ethiopian soldiers were using an Eritrean airport to attack Tigray. The Governments of Eritrea and Ethiopia deny that they are coordinating attacks on Tigray, but reports from journalists indicate that Abiy is receiving considerable support from Isaias. [23] [24]

The TPLF built relations with anti-Isaias groups among the Beni Amer in Kassala after the 1998-2000 Eritrean-Ethiopian war, and Isaias knows that any challenge for control of western Eritrea can come from Beni Amer allied with the ELF. Tigray already hosts several Eritrean opposition groups as well as small military bases for them – in much the same way Isais hosted a number of Ethiopian Opposition Groups until 2018.

Eritrea is now reported to be hosting the ENDF on its territory although it remains unclear if Eritrea’s own forces are involved in fighting. Tigray’s regional president Debretsion Gebremichael said forces aligned with Isaias bombed Humera, a strategic Tigrayan town on the triple frontier between Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Sudan on 9 November with heavy artillery, that Eritrean and Tigrayan forces are fighting on the border, and that ENDF forces have otherwise been restricted in their movements.

Prime Minister Abiy has claimed that the TPLF have been manufacturing Eritrean military uniforms in order to blame attacks on Eritrea. The communications shutdown and Eritrea’s ban on diplomats and journalists from traveling outside the capital makes it difficult to verify Eritrea’s involvement.

While former Sudanese President Bashir allied himself with Ethiopia’s former TPLF-led regime, the TPLF’s influence in Khartoum has become limited since both the TPLF and Bashir lost power. Eritrean Foreign Minister Osman Saleh met with Sudanese Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok on 11 November, leading some people to believe that they asked the Government to cut off any potential logistical support to the TPLF.[25]

Sudan has previously clandestinely supported both the TPLF and the Eritrean Liberation Front (ELF) in allowing the passage of military and humanitarian logistics through its borders. At the time, Sudan’s involvement was crucial to their success, but it would be difficult for Sudan to resort to the same tactics again.

If Sudan does support the TPLF Abiy could retaliate by supporting Sudanese rebel groups following peace accords they signed with Sudan’s transitional government in October. Alternatively, Isaias could seek to enlist discontented Sudanese opposition figures who were previously based in Eritrea from the mid-1990s to 2006.

Sudan is Tigray’s only logistical links to the outside world in terms of fuel, ammunition, and food. While Sudan has officially closed the borders between Tigray and Sudan’s frontier states of Kassala and Gadaref, it could use the threat of support to the TPLF to extract concessions from Addis Ababa on the contested territory.

Sudan has rejected Ethiopia’s proposal on the GERD dam for guidelines that would enshrine Ethiopia’s future ability to manage annual flow of the Blue Nile on a discretionary basis, and Khartoum is already using the issue as leverage to pressure Abiy on disputed territory.

If Abiy were to concede and give contested land to Sudan he would lose the expansive support he imagines he has among ethnic Amhara, where the disputed Fashqa triangle is.  Abiy’s latest reshuffling has led him to rely on a small network of Amhara who could ultimately turn on him if he does not continue to serve their interests against the TPLF and their designs to restructure the Ethiopian state.

Ethiopian leaders should refrain from drawing their neighbours into their dispute. Sudan has already seen over 40,000 people flee from Ethiopia.[26] A new refugee crisis could engulf neighbouring countries, which already host sizable refugee or displaced populations. Ethiopia itself has 1.8 million displaced people within its borders.

Withdrawing troops from the peacekeeping mission in Somalia will equally destabilise the region and the vacuum could lead to terrorist groups expanding across the Horn of Africa.

The government of Ethiopia has accepted the initiative of the African Union chairperson, the President of South Africa, to appoint three special envoys to find a solution to the current situation in Ethiopia[27]. This initiative was released in a statement following talks between President Sahle-Work Zewde of Ethiopia and South African President Cyril Ramaphosa.

That initiative was spelled out in detail: “The Envoys will travel to Ethiopia with a view to helping to

mediate between the parties to conflict in the sister Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia. The

primary task of the Special Envoys is to engage all sides to the conflict with a view to ending hostilities,

creating conditions for an inclusive national dialogue to resolve all issues that led to the conflict, and

restoring peace and stability to Ethiopia.”

The AU Special Envoys were named as three former presidents:  Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf of Liberia;

Joaquim Chissano of Mozambique and South Africa’s Kgalema Motlanthe. This AU initiative was

welcomed by the UN Secretary General, but was unfortunately not taken up by Prime Minister Abiy,

who has rejected all mediation efforts[28]. An international mediator is urgently needed to deescalate

the situation. It seems that for now Abiy has refused private attempts at mediating and will not accept

anything other than total victory over Tigray and the TPLF.[29]

 

—————————– ENDS ———————-

[1] Financial Times, Ethiopia tells Tigrayans to ‘save themselves’ ahead of assault on capital, 22 November 2020, https://www.ft.com/content/748d41d0-35e2-44b6-9833-2bf21f57528b

[2] https://twitter.com/AmbassadorRice/status/1330537213373927425

[3] The Sydney Morning Herald, Ethiopia may be on the edge of genocide, 22 November 2020, https://www.smh.com.au/world/africa/ethiopia-may-be-on-the-edge-of-genocide-20201122-p56gum.html

[4] New York Times, Having Made Peace Abroad, Ethiopia’s Leader Goes to War at Home, November 4, 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/04/world/africa/ethiopia-abiy-tigray.html?action=click&module=RelatedLinks&pgtype=Article

[5] BBC Nwws, Ethiopia Tigray crisis: Rockets hit outskirts of Eritrea capital, 14 November 2020 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-54942546

[6] UNHCR, November 17 2020, https://www.unhcr.org/news/briefing/2020/11/5fb391214/pace-ethiopian-refugee-arrivals-sudan-unseen-decades.html

[7] BBC News, Ethiopia’s Tigray crisis: UN urges protection of civilians, 23 November 2020 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-55037162

[8] UNHCR, November 17 2020, https://www.unhcr.org/news/briefing/2020/11/5fb391214/pace-ethiopian-refugee-arrivals-sudan-unseen-decades.html

[9] Financial Times, Tigray crisis: ‘They know how to fight and they can do it ’til the end’, November 15 2020, https://www.ft.com/content/1045b184-cd0e-43c0-8597-62a5a7819331

[10] New York Times, Having Made Peace Abroad, Ethiopia’s Leader Goes to War at Home, November 4, 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/04/world/africa/ethiopia-abiy-tigray.html?action=click&module=RelatedLinks&pgtype=Article

[11] BBC Nwws, Ethiopia Tigray crisis: Rockets hit outskirts of Eritrea capital, 14 November 2020 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-54942546

[12] BBC News, Ethiopia crisis: Arrest warrants for officers amid Tigray fighting,  November 19 2020, https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-54996795

[13] Le Monde, En Ethiopie, difficiles tentatives de médiation pour mettre fin au conflit au Tigré, November 17 2020 https://www.lemonde.fr/afrique/article/2020/11/17/en-ethiopie-difficiles-tentatives-de-mediation-pour-mettre-fin-au-conflit-au-tigre_6060033_3212.html

[14] “Statement on Ethiopia by the senior study group on peace and security in the Red Sea arena,” U.S. Institute of Peace, Washington, DC, https://www.usip.org/press/2020/11/statement-ethiopia-senior-study-group-peace-and-security-red-sea-arena.

[15] “Ethiopia records more than 1,8 million displaced in 2020, International Organization on Migration, https://www.iom.int/news/iom-report-ethiopia-records-more-18-million-internally-displaced-2020

[16] “Bridging the Divide in Ethiopia’s North,” International Crisis Group, 12 June 2020, E 2020 https://www.crisisgroup.org/africa/horn-africa/ethiopia/b156-bridging-divide-ethiopias-north

[17] “Tigray vote puts Ethiopia on edge after months of violence,” Financial Times, 08 September 2020 https://www.ft.com/content/47dbdd67-0ad2-4c94-9055-075eb5bb9517

[18] UNHCR, November 17 2020, https://www.unhcr.org/news/briefing/2020/11/5fb391214/pace-ethiopian-refugee-arrivals-sudan-unseen-decades.html

[19] Foreign Policy, Sudan Will Decide the Outcome of the Ethiopian Civil War,  November 14  2020https://foreignpolicy.com/2020/11/14/sudan-will-decide-outcome-ethiopian-civil-war-abiy-tigray/

[20] Amnesty International, Ethiopia: Investigation reveals evidence that scores of civilians were killed in massacre in Tigray state, https://www.amnesty.org/en/latest/news/2020/11/ethiopia-investigation-reveals-evidence-that-scores-of-civilians-were-killed-in-massacre-in-tigray-state/

[21] Reuters, Ethiopian police seeking lists of ethnic Tigrayans – U.N. report, November 13 2020,  https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-ethiopia-conflict-tigrayans/ethiopian-police-seeking-lists-of-ethnic-tigrayans-u-n-report-idUKKBN27T15W

[22] Le Monde, En Ethiopie, difficiles tentatives de médiation pour mettre fin au conflit au Tigré, November 17 2020 https://www.lemonde.fr/afrique/article/2020/11/17/en-ethiopie-difficiles-tentatives-de-mediation-pour-mettre-fin-au-conflit-au-tigre_6060033_3212.html

[23] New York Times, Having Made Peace Abroad, Ethiopia’s Leader Goes to War at Home, November 4, 2020, https://www.nytimes.com/2020/11/04/world/africa/ethiopia-abiy-tigray.html?action=click&module=RelatedLinks&pgtype=Article

[24] BBC Nwws, Ethiopia Tigray crisis: Rockets hit outskirts of Eritrea capital, 14 November 2020 https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-54942546

[25] https://twitter.com/hawelti/status/1326542767145639936

[26] BBC News, Ethiopia crisis: Arrest warrants for officers amid Tigray fighting,  November 19 2020, https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-54996795

[27]https://addisstandard.com/news-alert-au-chair-appoints-three-special-envoys-to-help-mediate-ongoing-conflict-in-ethiopia-create-conditions-for-inclusive-dialogue/

[28]https://www.un.org/sg/en/content/sg/statement/2020-11-20/statement-attributable-the-spokesperson-for-the-secretary-general-ethiopia%C2%A0 

[29] Le Monde, En Ethiopie, difficiles tentatives de médiation pour mettre fin au conflit au Tigré, November 17 2020 https://www.lemonde.fr/afrique/article/2020/11/17/en-ethiopie-difficiles-tentatives-de-mediation-pour-mettre-fin-au-conflit-au-tigre_6060033_3212.html

12 comments

  1. I know a number of people who have been attached to the milking cow TPLF now it is getting dry so they have to knock every door to compromise Ethiopian people sovereignty. I appreciate you come down on the ground the whole operation has actually gave us a freedom by uprooting the 30 years planted poison in the country. Without the professional and mature leadership of H.E. Dr. Abiy Ahemd the damage would have been extremely huge, but now none. All the damage caused is mainly by the Junta TPLF who lost hope started ploughing airports and damaging infrastructure as if it belongs to an enemy.

    Please come and visit the whole area and you will be able to write the truth

    Regards,
    Dereje

  2. The letter concerning P M Abiy´s Peace Price should be sent to Oslo, Norway.
    The decision of Peace Price winner is made in Norway not in Sweden.

  3. Here appears Martine Paul as Tigray sympathizer. He is not a journalist, he is actually he is weapon dealer and unfortunately Dr Abiy has blocked his way out. Now started to smear his name shamelessly and noising to Noble committee. Why he keep deaf and blind the massacre made by his friend juntas at Mai Cadra it is a genocides against humanity, most probably his invisible hands are felt in attempting to hide orchestrating the atrocity. I think the the Gov’t Ethiopia should to international court to the Hague.
    Sir please pull out you hand from Ethiopia.

  4. Do you think Abiy or we Ethiopians worry about the Nobel prize?
    Unless you are ignorant the recent war is firstly opened by tplf and any government in this planet will do more than he did, secondly he should get another Nobel prize because he stopped the eminent civil war which was in action by tplf conspiracy and third you should understand by this time Ethiopia is first from anything including Nobel prize.
    How much do you received from tplf to make you this much poisonous?

  5. The TPLF is already collapsed. Their collaborators and mercenaries have cracked down. Your thoughts show who you are. For you the lives of Ethiopians other than the thief TPLF and criminals have no value. In fact you don’t have capacity and knowledge of understanding what human dignity is. The group doesn’t have mercy and still is in barbaric stage. Fortunately it will never influence Tigray live alone Ethiopia. You and evil TPLF goog bye!!

  6. Those supporting tplf have two poor qualities. One they do not have mind and eye to see the truth on the ground. The other one is they do not know Ethiopia and Ethiopians. That is why they are restless to deceive the world. Nobel commett is big organization to learn the truth and hope will award PM Abiy as he freed Tegry people from lifelong cancer /blood sackers/ .
    Thank you Pm Abiy You are great leader. Ethiopia will always remember you like King Minilik II.

  7. Can a Nobel peace prize that has been bistowed to a distinguished individual be resended? How? On what ground? Do you know the rules when you utter a word? This reflects that you are a grusome illiterate who does not have the intellectual commonsense to say the least. I could have said more but you are not my type to waste my time. You must learn what peace means and how you should defend it. and we can talk.

  8. This is totalt wrong information in an attempt to mislead the international political and other concern organizations. The best witness to happens in Ethiopia is Ethiopians themselves. This article fails when it tries to associate the party TPLF with the entre people of Tigray. The party in it’s nature has an absolute mafia nature even while it was holding stare power. The large and many well dug trenches prove that TPLF is the one that was provoking the stare for war.
    There has been a number of occasions where the government and other public figures were asking the criminal leaders of this party for peaceful political dialogue which was repeatedly rejected with embarassement. Partiene of the government was called by the itresponsible leaders of this party and many of its polarisert supporters of the Tigrey region weackness and fear. The government did not have any intention of war and was talking other meanses to deal with the 3 years long proxy war TPLF was leasing in different regions. This article is defiant to criticize prime minister Abiy by mentioning his peace Nobel award. Nobel peace winning should not have paralizing effect to allow terrorists lead their mess freely. The current conflict is an operation for law engasjement after this terror gangs sloughtered the stare army while asleep. TPLF leaders were bluffing any invitation for peaceful dialogues until it soon started to suffer the military operation following its unexpected sloughter. Now the operation is near conclusion. What remain is the party leaders to surrender. At this final time, some of its foreigner and Ethiopian (some Tigrean and Oromo) diaspora agents are trying to serve as life savers. Og any international organization is going to put hands on the situation, the genuine way should be to influence TPLF leaders to surrender or release the people they have addicted. There is no any situation where any government will be asked to negotiate with terror delers, particularly when the government has the full military command.
    Finally, I would like to say peace is an agreement that will be secured by committment of two partiets. No matter peaceful one may be, it does not gurantee ultimate peace if the other side is always provoking and attacking. That is what happened to our primer minister. The very most majority of Ethiopians are the best witnesses of the situation, not the diaspora or other foreign allies of TPLF.

  9. A Briefing note from Tigray Government (to the International Community)
    —————————————————
    Tigray Emergency
    Situation Report
    from within Tigray

    Military Invasion
    =============
    It has been a month since the Ethiopian Defence Forces, Eritrean Defence Forces, Amhara Special Forces, Amhara Militia, Fano Amhara Youth Vigilantes and regional special forces of the remaining constituent members of the Ethiopian federation – here in after the invading army – have launched military attack on Tigray.

    On December 1, 2020 the invading army launched an offensive, supported with heavy artillery from three directions in Hawzen – Megab, Mekelle – Allasa and from the direction of Samre at Dangolat and was effectively defeated by the Tigray Defensive Forces .
    The invading forces conducted drone ( Unmanned Arial Vehicle) attacks in the town of Abiyi Adi, Tembain that impacted civil installations and public infrastructures. It must be highlighted that there are currently no military installations in this town nor is it an active war zone.

    The invading army has been using human waves, most popular during the first world war and has suffered tremendous casualties.
    TDF have taken over nearly 15,000 prisoners of war, most of whom have been handed over to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC)

    The TDF took every precautions to avoid civilian casualties like vacating major towns, including the capital, to avoid civilian casualties and the destruction of property.
    Tigray regional government has managed to undertake strategic retreat with all its military, government and party structures in tact.
    TDF has been on a defensive mode for the past month, in this new phase of the war, TDF will be taking offensives to leverage its land and people.

    At this point, the invading army is encountering low scale warfare all over Tigray until a full scale offensive is taken in the near future. The TDF will mount a full scale operation of liberating the territories currently under occupation.

    The Eritrean forces are establishing government structures in the occupied Tigrayan territories particularly in the vast territory of Adiabo areas bordering Eritrea.
    Similarly, the Amhara regional state is doing the same in the occupied Western and Southern part of Tigray and the settlement of Amharas so as to change the demographic structure of the area. In the past, the Amhara regional state has claimed such territory as belonging to the state but was not able to establish the legal prerequisite for a referendum, one of which was a signed petition from interested residents to trigger such a proceeding.

    We would like to highlight that the attack by the invading forces on Tigray is an offence against the values of the federation which grants nations and nationalities the right of self governance. It must therefore be noted that this is an attack on the strongest defender of the value of self determination and will be destructive for the unity and stability of the nation.

    Humanitarian and refugee crisis
    =========================
    The Tigray regional government is greatly concerned by reports coming out that the Abiy regime is blocking refugees traveling in the hopes of shelter in Sudan. This was not done only to prevent the refugees from receiving aid but also as a way of refusing the people the opportunity to tell their stories and refute the false and irresponsible narratives coming out of the Abiy regime and an attempted cover up of the gruesome atrocities the Abiy regime is committing in occupied territories.

    The Tigray government is appreciative of the European Unions insistence on urging for a humanitarian corridor and a political resolution on the crisis. The Tigray government had been urging for an all inclusive dialogue that comprehensively addresses the nations problems.

    The capture of major cities in Tigray has been proceeded by the evacuation of many of the residents fleeing indiscriminate heavy artillery attacks and horror committed by the invading army.

    The shutting down of telecommunication in the state by the Abiy regime has further emboldened the invading forces to commit war crimes of great proportion.

    A special militia from Eritrea, currently occupying and attempting to annex Adiabo in the norther parts of the national regional state of Tigrai, are committing especially atrocious crimes. The militia’s lack of affinity with the neighbouring areas has made the crimes exceptionally cruel and is sure to leave a memorable scar in the relations between the people of Tigray and Eritrea.

    We ask that the international community in no uncertain terms condemn the participation of Eritrea in this conflict. This journey of vengeance by the Isaias region will further impoverish the Eritrean people and can only be understood as an act of suicide.

    Residents of the state including refugee camps are currently running out of food, medicine and other essential items. The closing of banking systems and other basic services is sure to lead to urban starvation making it clear to the people of Tigray and the international community that this is a war of attrition on the people of Tigray and aims to weaken the state and its people on all fronts.

    Similarly, refugees housed in the regional state have also suffered the blunt of the on going conflict. Shimelba, Histats and May Kuhli refugee camps have been attacked by the invading forces followed by looting, killing, kidnapping and forceful arming of refugees.
    These acts were committed in violation of the protections granted to refugees by international law. The regional state pledges to do its part to support the resettlement of the refugees in the shortest period.

    The Tigray government has formally requested for the opening of a humanitarian and press corridor into the regional state so as to reduce the suffering of its residents; a request the Abiy regime has so far denied. We urge the international community to insist on human rights monitors to be deployed to the state to reduce the chances of further humanitarian abuses by the invading forces and the establishment of an independent investigation into crimes committed in Mai Kahdra, Zalambess, Hawzen, Adamayti, Humera and other major cities.

    We believe the denial by the Abiy regime for access to a humanitarian corridor is a testament of the disregard the Abiy regime has shown for the protection of civilians throughout this conflict.

  10. Still killing civilians .
    Removing Abiy Ahmmad from the Nobel peace prize is not stoping the death of kids .The UN need to take the action and stop the war in Tigray.

  11. Abiy Ahmed is comiting Genoside on Tigrai people,bombing civilians with UAE drones and killing civiliand with the help of Eritrean soldiers…..He needs to be awarded WAR PRIZE not peace prize.

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