The Ethiopian government announced on Saturday that it had made military advances in the dissident region of Tigré (north), against which Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed launched a military operation that has already caused the flight of tens of thousands of people.
“Our forces are advancing towards Mekele,” the capital of the Tigré, declared on Saturday a government media, Ethiopia State of Emergency Fact Check. Mekele is the fiefdom of the Tigré Popular Liberation Front (TPLF), which runs the region.
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abioy Ahmed, a 2019 Nobel Peace Prize winner, launched a military operation on November 4 against the TPLF, accusing it of wanting to destabilize the government and having attacked two Ethiopian military bases in the region, which the Tigré authorities.
According to the government agency, the army also regained control of several cities in the region, such as Aksum and Aidgrat, some 117 kilometers north of Mekele.
The TPLF reported in a statement an “intense bombardment” of Adigrat, without indicating which side now controlled the city.
The claims of one or the other belligerent cannot be independently verified.
In a statement on Saturday, the Ethiopian prime minister celebrated the army’s advance. “Our forces have already completely liberated the city of Adigrat from the TPLF militia,” he said.
“The safety of all and the well-being of the Tigré population is of paramount importance to the federal government and we are going to do everything necessary for stability to prevail” in the region, he added.
Abiy Ahmed did not immediately respond to international calls for de-escalation.
The fighting, which would have killed at least hundreds, caused the flight of more than 36,000 Ethiopians to neighboring Sudan, according to the Sudanese authorities.
str-tmc / blb / etr / bc / eg