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News: Commission, Amhara region officials hold consultative forum on DDR, as works to demobilize, reintegrate up to 250,000 ex-combatants underway

Ambassador Teshome Toga (center) sitting with Amhara region senior officials during the consultative forum today

Addis Abeba – Ambassador Teshome Toga, Commissioner of the National Rehabilitation Commission, said the Commission has conducted a region-wide consultative forum on Disarmament, Demobilization and Integration (DDR) topic with officials of the Amhara regional state in Bahir Dar, the regional capital.

The Ambassador said the Commission has “conducted Amhara region wide consultative forum on DDR” and the Rehabilitation Commission in the presence of the regional state’s Vice President Dr Getachew Jember, Cleophas Torori, UNDP Ethiopia Deputy Resident Representative and the Commission’s leadership.

“Grateful to Amhara National regional State for jointly hosting the forum and for [the] warm welcome and generous hospitality,” Ambassador Teshome tweeted.

The Commission is currently developing a National Demobilization and Reintegration Program (NDRP) for ex- combatants. The program was discussed with development partners on 23 March in Addis Abeba, according to a joint statement by the National Reform Commission together with the Ministry of Finance and the United Nations.

The Commission’s first national consultation on demobilization and reintegration was held in Mekelle on 10 March. “Similar consultations will also be held in Bahir Dar, Semera and other cities in Ethiopia,” according to the joint statement.

The NRC was established by the Ethiopian government in November 2022. According to the joint statement, the Commission is established for a period of two years to assist with demobilization and reintegration of ex-combatants across the country.

The draft NDRP prepared by the Commission follows the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement between the Government of Ethiopia and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) in November 2022. “This National Program will support demobilization and reintegration of up to 250,000 ex- combatants in Ethiopia, and will be implemented in parts of the country making an important program that is integral to national efforts to consolidate peace and promote stability in the country,” the joint statement further said.

Based on the request of the Government, the United Nations is providing technical and financial assistance to the NRC through the operational coordination of the UNDP, according to the UNDP. “Support to the demobilisation and reintegration process by partners is expected to play a significant role in peace support efforts, and in creating an environment in which a peace process, political and social reconciliation, access to livelihoods as well as sustainable development can take root.” AS

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