The following is a translation of Tigray Region president Debretsion Gebremichael’s major part of a 36 minutes presser which was broadcast live via Tigray TV a short while ago.
Medihane Ekubamichael @Medihane
Addis Abeba, November 02/2020 P
*** The federal government has deliberately suspended the direct supports [saftynet] that go to Tigray people in revenge to the people’s participation on the election.
***The govt also tried to intervene and suspend sport activities but later reversed back for fear of reactions from international sport organizations like FIFA.
***The federal government’s effort to try to reach [Tigray] only through the Kebele level administration is typically a unitary government character.
***The govt now is trying to resolve these issues by force. Political differences are solved by discussion, political power is gained only by election. There are signs that the government is trying to use force, that are mainly seen by standby order of the military throughout the country while nothing at this level needs such attention; on the other hand [it shows] the betrayal of the government …to hit its own country in collaboration with the Eritrean government that showed its willingness to help Abiy Ahmed.
***We have prepared our military of Special Force not in need of a war, but if the worst comes, to defend ourselves. Isaias [Afwerki] is playing his role as if he is a PP member, betraying the freedom of the country. Showing him around our Air Force base was outrageous. The base is restricted even to our own citizens let alone to a leader whose solders are pointing their rifles right in front of us, hiding in their fortress.
***We are still saying we don’t need any conflict or war; we only want to confront this through political dialogue.
***But they want to subdue the people of Tigray and they want the border issue to remain as it is until subjugating the Tigray people to its knee.
***We are assisting the Eritrean people with whatever we can in here and so the Eritrean people should be spared from unnecessary war.
***We have informed to every stakeholder including all major international bodies and governments about coming danger before anything happened.
***What does it mean for a government to try to hit its own part for holding election?
***We should give attention to the situation that is advancing to a war and everyone should be ready. This war [if it happened] is the peoples’ war not the militias’ and the Special Force. We were working to avoid war but since the situations are being changed, and if the war is imminent, we are ready not only to resist but also to win the war.
***Any transfer of any sort of information regarding military activity or war [if it happened] through social media or any media is strictly prohibited. Only we shall disseminate such information of the military matters. We strictly take measure if anyone does so.