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News Update: Students returning from Mekelle University opt for route via Amhara as violence intensifies along Afar, Somali regions border

Families waiting in front of UN Ethiopia office

By Etenesh Abera @EteneshAb 

Addis Abeba, July 27/2021 – Students stranded in Tigray universities have started returning back to their respective homes in different regions around the country. A Semera University staff confirmed to Addis Standard that students in large numbers arrived from Mekele.’’Yesterday more than 300 students opted to continue their journey via Kombolcha. Today another 400 students will continue the journey to Addis Abeba from Semera University,’’ said Mohammed Ahmed, a staff of Semera University. According to Mohammed most students opt for the route through Kombolcha in Amhara region instead of Awash Arba due to the ongoing conflict between Afar and Somali communities in the border area adjacent to Awash Arba.

‘’What we managed yesterday is minimal as thousands of students in Adigrat and Aksum Universities remain there. We are working day and night to return them back.’’ Abate Getahun (PhD), technical head of the committee responsible for returning students at the Ministry of Science and Higher Education was quoted saying by Ethiopia Insider. Abate added that the returned students come mainly  from Mekelle University. Students enroute to Addis Abeba were quoted saying that they received instructions to not disclose their exact location or give more information about their trip. 

This comes in the backdrop of a rally held by families of the students last week. The parents who organized in committee demanded transparency as there was no solid information provided to them by all involved parties. It is important to note that the armed conflict in Tigray will enter its nine consecutive month. AS.  

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