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African Union calls for full implementation of “Pretoria Agreement” amid renewed conflict in North Ethiopia  

African Union _ North Ethiopia
African Union Flag (file)

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Toronto – The African Union on Thursday expressed its concern over the recent development in Northern Ethiopia.  Moussa Faki Mahamat, the Chairperson, said he is “following with deep concern the escalating tensions between local communities in the contested areas of northern Ethiopia, including Raya Alamata, Zata and Ofla.” 

Mr. Moussa Faki called for the Pretoria Agreement to be honored and fully implemented in the interest of ” Lasting Peace Through a Permanent Cessation of Hostilities (COHA), signed between the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia (FDRE) and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) on 2 November 2022, in Pretoria, South Africa.”

Last week, the TPLF forces launched an extensive military operation in the south taking control of at least four districts in Alamata and Koreas of Ethiopia. In an interview with BBC,  Getachew Reda, head of the interim administration of Tigray, denied that it is the TPLF or the regional government that undertook the military operation. The military operation has been rather presented as the works of “those who are hostile to the Pretoria Agreement,” – something that is not clearly spelled out as to who that entity is. 

According to OCHA, more than 50,000 civilians were displaced from the area after the TPLF’s latest military action and found themselves in Kobo, Wolida and Sekota. 

The AU chairperson used the expression “both sides” in the context of the latest military development. The brief update published on the AU website said “The Chairperson calls on both sides to urgently halt hostilities and ensure the safety of civilians to end the renewed displacement of the local population. ” From local news sources, the TPLF got a rather negligible military resistance from militia forces who were said to be ill-armed compared to the TPLF. Their resistance did not last days clearly. It means that there was no “other side” as far as the development in the Alamata area was concerned. 

Tadesse Worede, Deputy President of Tigray Region Interim Administration, said the areas in the Alamata area were controlled after an agreement with the Abiy Ahmed led Federal government. Yesterday, Ethiopia’s National Security Council released a statement calling for the TPLF to respect the Pretoria Agreement and disarm. 

 Mr. Moussa Faki urged the resumption of a political dialogue regarding issues in what it called “contested areas.” 

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