NewsAlert: Ethiopian foreign minister arrives in Tanzania

Addis Abeba– Ethiopia’s Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Demeke Mekonnen, arrived in Tanzania this afternoon, state media said,

The news came a day after PM Abiy Ahmed said peace negotiations with the Oromo Liberation Army (OLA) will start in Tanzania on Tuesday. But the state media did not mention the details on the said negotiation, and instead reported that Demeke has started a visit to four African countries including Comoros, Burundi and Uganda.

Demeke has also spoke with Tanzanian President Samia Suluhu Hassann Zanzibar, the Indian Ocean city, today “on bilateral and environmental issues.”

Yesterday, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said peace talks between the government and the Oromo Liberation Army (OLA) is planned to kick start on Tuesday 25 April in Tanzania. He said this during a live broadcast at an ongoing event in Addis Abeba recognizing stakeholders who played roles in ending the two years war between the federal government and Tigrayan forces with a cessation of hostilities agreement signed in Pretoria in November 2022.

Following the announcement, the Oromo Liberation Army (OLA) said in a statement that it “acknowledges the statements” made on Sunday, April 24, by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on the start next Tuesday of negotiations in Tanzania and said it “can confirm that the Ethiopian regime has accepted our terms for peace negotiations.”

However, the OLA, which has been fighting against government forces in Oromia for the last five years, said that it “strongly objects to the reference of our organization as “Shene,” a term the government often uses to refer to the group, which it had designated as a “terrorist organization” in May 2021. AS

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