TPLF called upon the international community to “condemn the latest offensive and support the people of Tigray”
About a week after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed inaugurated his second term in office in the presence of several heads of states from different parts of Africa, the offensive to clear about five zones from the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) seems to have started.
The TPLF has released a statement which its spokesperson, Getachew Reda, shared on social media on Monday. “The Ethiopian army with the support of Amhara forces launched a coordinated offensive in all fronts,” said the statement by TPLF.
He also told Reuters that a battle is underway in the Wogel Tena, Wurgessa and Hara area of North Wollo.
The organization, which the Ethiopian parliament designated as a terrorist organization, alleges the offensives has a plan to “invade Tigray” and unleash genocide.
According to the spokesperson, the offensive is both ground and air. Mr. Getachew said heavy artillery, tanks, rockers, jets and drones are deployed. It was unspecified as to which areas exactly came under Ethiopian Defense Force offensive.
TPLF has deployed hundreds of thousands of forces outside Tigray.
About five zones in the Amhara regional state are under the control of TPLF forces. An estimated 4.5 million people, as stated by Agegnehu Teshager who was president of Amhara regional state until late last month, are in the controlled areas facing famine like situations.
The areas in Afar region that were under TPLF control were liberated early last month.
It was after the Ethiopian government withdrew from the Tigray region of Ethiopia at the end of June on grounds of unilateral humanitarian ceasefire that the TPLF forces controlled the areas.
The latest statement released via Getachew Reda,however, seems to manifest emphasis on peaceful resolution of the war which the TPLF started when it unexpectedly attacked the Northern Command of the Ethiopian Defense Force in November 2020.
The statement said “war was not, and is not, the first option for the people and government of Tigray.” Yet, the TPLF also vowed that what it called the campaign of self-defense will carry on “until genocidal forces come to their senses and choose a peaceful path.”
The two-page statement also called for an intervention, diplomatic and political apparently, from the international community. “We call on the international community to condemn the latest offensive and support the people of Tigray in their hours of need,” it said.
The Ethiopian Defense Force has released an update on Monday but did not confirm that it has started ground and air offensive. The office of the Prime Minister of Ethiopia has not remarked on the TPLF statement either.
Maj. Gen. Yilma Merdassa, Commander of the Ethiopian Air Force, made headlines in state-owned media, but again he did not confirm that the offensive was launched. However, he hinted that the Ethiopian people will hear good news sooner rather than later.
The proxy war by the enemies of Ethiopia, he said, is intended to derail Ethiopia in its path to development and pose danger. It will be reversed, he added.
Join the conversation. Follow us on twitter @zborkena to get latest Ethiopian News updates regularly. Like borkena on Facebook as well. To share information or for submission, send e-mail to email@example.com