President of Afar regional state, Awol Arba, called on the United Nations to provide humanitarian support to people in the region
For a couple of weeks now, the TPLF has been intensifying a renewed military campaign in the Afar region of Ethiopia. Despite well over 300,000 residents from the region are said to have been displaced, the Federal government did not respond to the situation and regional forces and militia had to face a mechanised military offensive.
The Federal Government organised military response has not happened yet. Decisions on the matter seem to be taking a rather bureaucratic process.
On Wednesday, the House of People’s Representative (Parliament) dispatched the Foreign Relation & Peace Standing Committee to the region for what appears to be a fact finding mission.
Dima Negawo, a former Oromo Liberation Front official and now a parliamentarian, led the mission to Afar, and visited displaced people currently residing in temporary shelter in Afdera.
Afar regional authorities, including Awol Arba himself, have confirmed that TPLF has been shelling areas where there are no military targets, at least in three of the five districts that came under the military attack.
The parliamentary committee learned first hand from the people displaced from the area, and from elders that regional forces and militia were not in a position to respond to the TPLF attack as it was firing heavy artillery including. The committee is told that government support is needed – something that should have been understood without any fact finding mission. Intelligence service is anticipated to have information as to what is happening in the area.
A report from EBC, state media, indicated an even more perplexing news. It said the whereabouts of many residents from the affected area is “unknown.” Looks like the TPLF might have kidnapped many more from the five districts. TPLF has been employing a human wave military strategy during its military expansion in the Afar and Amhara regions of Ethiopia.
There has been mounting pressure from activists on Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government to act decisively in Afar region and protect civilians from TPLF attack.
Meanwhile, Awol Arba called upon the United Nations to provide humanitarian support to those affected in the region.
He has confirmed about TPLF military attacks in the areas adjacent to Tigray region and that people’s livelihood are entirely destroyed. And he pointed out that aid agencies arrive in the Afar region with the agenda on how to deliver aid to the Tigray region and victims of the TPLF war in Afar are not getting the help they deserve.
The UN Deputy Secretary General, Amina Mohammed, along with Ethiopian president Sahlework Zewde, visited those impacted by the TPLF war in the Afar region.
She is quoted as saying that she learned that women and children are primarily affected by the war.
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