By Getahun Tsegaye @GetahunTsegay12
Addis Abeba – Amina Mohammed, Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations said she “encourage the federal government to hold peace talks with all the stakeholders to end the ongoing human atrocities.” The UN deputy chief said this in a short press briefing she gave to local journalists at Addis Abeba Bole International Airport this afternoon.
Ms. Amina ended her visit to Ethiopia which started on 05 February. She also attended, on behalf of the Secretary-General, the 35th ordinary session of the Assembly of the African Union.
During her stay, she visited the three regional states devastated by Ethiopia’s ongoing civil war and interacted with a range of stakeholders, including Debretsion Gebremichael (PhD), the leader of Tigray state. (see picture)
“I have been to the three regions: Afar, Amhara, and Tigray. I met the TPLF and the other regional leaders. I encourage the federal government to hold peace talks with all the stakeholders to end the ongoing human atrocities,: she told reporters, adding that “children and women have been most vulnerable to the ongoing conflict.”
Ms. Amina’s visiti came in the heels of the UN Secretary General António Guterres’ latest call for cessation of hostilities to end Ethiopia’s 15 months-old civil war. Shortly before his departure to attend the Winter Olympic Games Beijing 2022 on 01 February, the UN Chief has issued yet another appeal to end hostilities. In his appeal, the Secretary-General invoked the tradition of the Olympic Truce”, which he said “has called on all parties, everywhere, to stop hostilities throughout the course of Games.”
Mr. Guterres’ last statement on Ethiopia was issued on on Janurary 19 in which he said he had “a telephone conversation” with the African Union High Representative for the Horn of Africa, Olusegun Obasanjo, “to exchange views with him on the conflict in Ethiopia following his latest visit to Addis Abeba and Mekelle, the capital of the regional state of Tigray.”
He said he was “delighted that after over a year of armed conflict which has affected millions of people across Ethiopia and the rest of the region, there is now a demonstrable effort to make peace.”
However, there has been no tangible progress since then and Ethiopian officials have continued denying that there were talks to end hostilities. But on January 29, the leader of Tigray state, Debretsion Gebremichael (PhD), has told the BBC that “there are encouraging signs” in the peace negotiations to end civil war.
However, the Ethiopian government has not publicly acknowledged the presence of talks with authorities in Tigray. AS