Addis Abeba – In the backdrop of the AU-led pace talks that is expected to take place in South Africa between the representatives of the federal government and the Tigray regional state authorities, a bipartisan group of the U.S. Senate wrote a letter to Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed pleading with his government and all parties involved to end the war “that has ravaged northern Ethiopia for two years.” The letter urged for immediate cessation of hostilities, withdrawal of Eritrean forces and the provision of unfettered humanitarian access.
“We strongly urge all parties involved in the fighting to immediately cease hostilities, including the withdrawal of the Eritrean Defense Forces from northern Ethiopia, and allow unfettered humanitarian access to the entire region to ensure a successful outcome to negotiations,” the group said in the letter.
The AU-led pace talk was scheduled to begin on 24 October following the confirmation both from the federal government and Tigray regional state authorities of sending their respective delegation to South Africa. But there are no indications that the talks went ahead according to the scheduled timetable.
The bipartisan letter “welcomes” the government’s decision to participate in the talks, and said the group is “hopeful” the talks “will signal an end to the violence.”
“The surge of violence in the last few weeks is the latest tragic chapter in a war that has had a devastating human toll. Since the start of the conflict in November 2020, an estimated 2.5 million civilians have been displaced, and approximately 500,000 killed.” AS