Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed reportedly stood on the front line on Wednesday where government forces are fighting rebels from the Tigray region The fighting in the north of Africa’s most populous country has killed thousands of people and left hundreds of thousands in starvation-like situations.
Foreign governments have urged their citizens to leave amid the escalating war and fears the Tigrayan rebels may march on the capital, Addis Ababa.
Abiy, 2019 Nobel Peace Prize Winner, ” is now conducting the counter-offensive “and” launched from the battlefield yesterday, “reported Fana Broadcasting Corporate.
It was not clear where Abiy, a former military radio operator who had promoted to lieutenant colonel, had deployed .
State media did not broadcast pictures of him in the field, and officials did not respond to req. responds asking for details of his whereabouts.
Regarding reports of Abiy at the frontline, the US State Department warned late Wednesday that “there is no military solution” to the Ethiopian civil war.
“We call on all parties to abstain from inflammatory and bellicose rhetoric, to exercise restraint, to respect human rights, to grant humanitarian access and to protect civilians,” said a spokesman for the State Department.
< A day earlier, Washington's special envoy to the Horn of Africa, Jeffrey Feltman, said that "emerging advances" are in danger of being "overtaken by the military escalation on the two sides".
Other foreign envoys as well desperately pressed for a ceasefire, although there were few signs of a breakthrough.
On Wednesday, UN chief Antonio Guterres called for a swift end to the fighting, comments during a visit to Colombia on the occasion of the fifth anniversary of a peace agreement between the government and former FARC rebels.
“The peace process in Colombia inspires me to make an urgent appeal today to the protagonists of the conflict in Ethiopia for an unconditional and immediate ceasefire Save the country, “he said.
War broke out in November 2020 when Abiy sent troops to Tigray to overthrow his rule, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF).
He said the move was in response to the TPLF’s attacks on federal army camps and promised a quick victory, but by the end of June the rebels had recaptured most of Tigray. including its capital, Mekele.
Since then, the TPLF has advanced into the neighboring regions of Amhara and Afar, claiming this week it has captured a city just 220 kilometers (135 miles) from Addis Ababa.
Abiy’s announcement on Monday that he would go to the front lines “has inspired many to join the survival campaign,” Fana said on Wednesday.
Hundreds of new recruits attended a ceremony in their honor in the Kolfe district of the capital on Wednesday.
As officials made sheep and oxen to Truc on their way north, the recruits broke out in patriotic songs and chants.
“When a leader takes his chair … -old driver, said AFP.
Feyisa Lilesa, a long-distance runner and Olympic silver medalist, told state media that the rebel advance was” a great one. ” Opportunity “to defend the nation.
The marathon runner permits nodded political celebrity by raising and crossing his arms as he finished the marathon at the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro – a gesture of solidarity with ethnic Oromos killed while fighting against the TPLF during nearly three decades – Abuses committed rulership protested.
Even though it calls citizens to fight, Abiy’s government insists that the achievements of the TPLF have been overestimated and criticized what it calls sensational media coverage and alarming Describes safety notices from Western embassies.
The war has sparked a humanitarian crisis with reports of massacres and mass rape On Wednesday the United Nations expressed concern over reports of large-scale evictions from West Tigray, where the US previously faced ethnic Purges had warned.
“The Tigray Zone authorities report 8,000 new arrivals, possibly up to 20,000 “, said the UN refugee agency UNHCR and added that it could not confirm the numbers immediately.
Several witnesses have told AFP of mass arrests of Tigray civilians in West Tigray in the past few days. < / p>
Amhara troops occupied the highly contested area a year ago, and Amhara officials accused the TPLF of illegally annexing it three decades earlier.
When Amhara civilians poured in last year , Tigrayans in their tens have fled thousands – either west to Sudan or east, deeper into Tigray.