Ethiopian government and Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) representatives are reportedly having a “consultative meeting” in Nairobi. It started on Wednesday and is expected to last three days.
Nuur Mohamud Sheekh, Spokesperson for the IGAD Executive Secretary, tweeted :
“IGAD is honored to be at the consultative meeting of the senior commanders from the Gov’t of Ethiopia & the TPLF underway in Nairobi. IGAD is working actively with the parties, the AU & partners to ensure smooth & unhindered implementation of the Agreement signed in Pretoria!”
Images tweeted by the spokesperson show , among others, U.S. Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa (Mike Hammer), ( Field Marshal Berhanu Jula ( Ethiopian Defense Chief of Staff), TPLF military commander (Tadesse Worede), African Union Chairperson (Moussa Faki), Former Nigerian President (Olusegun Obasanjo), Former Kenyan President (Uhuru Kenyatta), and IGAD Secretary (Worqeneh Gebehehu)
Other sources say the third round of the meeting underway in Nairobi is closed, but a statement will be released in three days.
Tigray regional council, as TPLF calls it, earlier this week selected an 11 members committee as the “Peace Committee,” to participate in the ongoing negotiations.
According to the Pretoria Peace agreement, the TPLF was to fully disarm all its forces and the Ethiopian Defense Force was to take over Mekelle city which is currently under the TPLF’s control.
Military experts for the Ethiopian government and rebels side had a meeting in Shire early this month and it reportedly discussed ways of implementing disarming the rebel army.
The Tigray regional government was not recognized as a legitimate entity in the Pretoria peace agreement due to what the Ethiopian government said was an illegal election that the organization conducted. However, the TPLF continued to function as “Tigray’s government” – against the spirit of the peace agreement.
Earlier this week, Debrestion Gebremical, TPLF chairman, presented a report to “The Tigray region council” in which it accused the Ethiopian government of not fully implementing the peace agreement.
It said the Eritrean and Amhara region forces are not withdrawing from the region. No response is given to the TPLF allegations from any of the sides.
In a similar development, there are reports about signs that the TPLF is preparing for war again. Preparation of battle trenches and arming TPLF combatants in the Alamata area are said to be some of the activities that the TPLF is engaged in.
The Ethiopian government did not make any allegations against the TPLF but it said this week it is implementing the agreement. Social services have been restored in the parts of the Tigray region that are under the Ethiopian government control and humanitarian aid is distributed.
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