USA sees opportunity for dialogue in Ethiopia after Addis Ababa pledged not to make any military progress

The United States reiterated Tuesday that Addis Ababa’s pledge not to make further progress in the Amhara and Afar regions after an offensive against the Popular Front for the Liberation of Tigray (TPLF) that allowed it to recapture territory was “an opportunity “for both parties to” stop military operations and sit down at the negotiating table “.

“We have repeatedly said that there is no military solution to this conflict. That is why we support diplomacy as the first, last and only option. We reaffirm our call to the Government of Ethiopia to launch an inclusive and credible national dialogue that includes comprehensive transitional justice measures. and transparent and accountability of those responsible for the atrocities, “State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a statement.

USA sees opportunity for dialogue in Ethiopia after Addis Ababa pledged not to make any military progress
USA sees opportunity for dialogue in Ethiopia after Addis Ababa pledged not to make any military progress

The government of Ethiopia called on Monday that the US not withdraw the country from a commercial program that benefits Addis Ababa due to the political and human rights situation resulting from the conflict with TPLF unleashed in November 2020.

The Department of Commerce urged Washington to reconsider its decision to remove Ethiopia from the Africa Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA), highlighting the measures the authorities have taken since Abiy Ahmed took office in 2018 to “promote peace and Restore stability “.

He also stressed that they had acted “in good faith” with the US governments to “re-establish a mutually beneficial partnership” and stated that the country’s withdrawal from AGOA “tends to undermine the human rights cause in Ethiopia than will advance “, so recorded the Ethiopian television station Fana.

With this in mind, Price insisted on Tuesday that there is no update on the matter and that the decision has apparently been made: “The AGOA approval criteria in US law provide, among other things, that the country must not engage in serious human rights abuses and must continually respond work towards the establishment of the rule of law and political pluralism. “

Price said Biden found that three countries in sub-Saharan Africa, including Ethiopia, failed to comply with AGOA approval, a measure that will come into effect Jan. 1 after Washington repeatedly voiced criticism of the offensive that was ordered von Abiy and its impact in the humanitarian field.

Ethiopian authorities assured on December 24th that the army would not take any further action against the TPLF: “The army on the eastern fronts of Ahmara and Afar has been ordered to stand guard in the recently liberated areas. Army activities in other areas will be shared in the future, “Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed told the office.

With this in mind, Communication Minister Legesse Tulu confirmed the end of the offensive and stressed that the aim is to “liberate” the TPLF-captured areas of Amhara and Afar as the conflict spreads. Tiger in November 2020.

Legesse stressed that the TPLF had suffered a “heavy defeat”, adding that the government “will continue to take the necessary steps to prevent this destructive force from posing a threat”. “The army has been ordered to remain in its current positions,” he said.

The conflict broke out after the TPLF attacked the main army base in Mekelle, whereupon the Prime Minister ordered an offensive against the group after months of political and administrative tension.

Abiy himself moved to the war front to lead military operations in late November and recently returned to the capital following the army’s recent advances, while the TPLF has so far refused to enter into dialogue with Abiy if his terms are not met, calling for the resignation of the Prime Minister.

The TPLF accuses Abiy of fueling tension since he came to power in April 2018 when he became the first Oromo to take office. Until then, the TPLF was the dominant force within the ethnic coalition that had ruled Ethiopia since 1991, the People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). The group opposed the Abiy reforms, which it saw as an attempt to undermine its influence.

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