Ethiopia: Council of Ministers Declares State of Emergency in Tigray Regional State

Ethiopian soldiers at a military parade in Tigray (file image).

Addis Ababa — The Council of Ministers, in its 21st Extraordinary Session held today, has decreed a six-month state of emergency in Tigrai Regional State.

According to a statement issued by the Office of the Prime Minister, the Council has decreed the state of emergency in accordance with article 93(1) (a) of the Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia.

The article offers the power for the Council of Ministers to decree a state of emergency in case of external invasion, a breakdown of law and order which jeopardize constitutional order, natural disaster or an epidemic occurrence.

Accordingly, the Council of Ministers has decreed the state of emergency to shoulder its constitutional responsibility of the state to maintain the country's peace, the safety and security of its citizens and to prevent acts that may lead the country to further unrest and instability, the statement said.

The Council's decision recognizes the illegal and violent activities within the National Regional State of Tigray are endangering the constitution and constitutional order, public peace and security, specially threatening the country's sovereignty, seriously impeding the Federal Government from discharging its constitutional responsibility in the Region, violating decisions of the House of Federation, it added.

The statement noted that the situation has reached a level where it cannot be prevented and controlled through the regular law enforcement mechanism.

The State of Emergency is decreed for a period of six months and a State of Emergency Task Force to be led by the Chief of Staff of the Armed Forces, composed of representatives from pertinent institutions and liable to the Prime Minister has been established through the State of Emergency decree.

The State of Emergency Shall be applicable throughout the National Regional State of Tigray, it was indicated.

The State of Emergency Taskforce may through directives expand or restrict the geographic scope of application of the decree.

Detailed information regarding the State of Emergency on a regular basis will be provided in due course.

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