Africa: PM Abiy Briefs AU Special Envoys On Law Enforcement Operation in Tigray Region

Ethiopian Prime Minister meeting with envoys from the African Union - former Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, former Mozambique President Joaquim Chissano and former South African President Kgalema Motlanthe.

Addis Ababa — Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed held discussion today with AU special envoys and briefed them about the current law enforcement operation underway in Tigary Regional State against the TPLF clique, according to the Office of the Prime Minister.

The premier received this morning former President of Liberia Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf, Former President of Mozambique Joaquim Chissano, and Former President of South Africa Kgalema Motlanthe -- the designated special envoys of Cyril Ramaphosa, President of South Africa and Chairperson of the African Union.

During the occasion, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed expressed his profound gratitude to the African Union Chairperson, Cyril Ramaphosa for the utmost concern and understanding shared in Ethiopia's efforts to end impunity and bring the TPLF criminal clique to justice.

According to the statement issued by the office, he also appreciated the special envoys for their visit to Ethiopia, in elderly concern, reiterating the well-meaning endeavors of African brothers and sisters who are equally hopeful for a prosperous and stable Ethiopia.

Ethiopia appreciates this gesture and the steadfast commitment this demonstrates to the principle of African solutions to African problems, he added.

During the discussion, Abiy briefed the envoys on the background to Ethiopia's rule of law operation currently underway in Tigray.

The premier dwelt at length on how patiently his government handled the provocations and destabilization agenda the TPLF orchestrated for more than two years.

Recounting the numerous attempts by the federal government to engage peacefully, he reiterated that the premeditated attack on the Northern Command of the National Defense Forces, which constitutes high treason under the Criminal Code of Ethiopia, was the final straw which forced the federal government to act in protection of the constitutional order of the country.

Abiy explained the federal government's constitutionally mandated responsibility to enforce rule of law in the region and across the country. Failure to do so would nurture a culture of impunity with devastating cost to the survival of the country, he emphasized.

According to the statement, PM Abiy further reiterated the following during the discussion with the special envoys.

The federal government's utmost commitment to the protection and security of civilians during the rule of law operations demonstrated in the national defense force's avoidance to engage in combat within cities and densely populated areas, by weathering rough terrain instead;

Establishment of high-level committee of federal stakeholders to access and respond to essential humanitarian needs of citizens in the region;

Identification and announcement of a humanitarian assistance routes for the provision of necessary relief materials to citizens in the region coordinated through the Ministry of Peace and in collaboration with UN agencies;

Readiness of the federal government to receive, rehabilitate, resettle citizens that have fled by setting up four camps established to rehabilitate returnees before resettling them back to their original locales;

Efforts underway to operationalize the constitutionally established and multi-party Provisional Administration of Tigray in town and cities under federal command to enable provision of government services;

Determination to apprehend and bring to justice the TPLF clique and their operatives who also perpetrated the gave crime against humanity in Maikadra;

Commitment to rebuild public infrastructure destroyed by TPLF militia, including communication facilities;

Unwavering commitment of the federal government to create a democratic Ethiopia that is inclusive of all without domination or repression of one group by another.

The prime minister also underscored his immense gratitude to friends of Ethiopia who are engaging constructively during the federal government's rule of law operations and expressed his commitment to dialogue with civil society and community representatives in the regional state of Tigray as well as political parties operating legally within the region.

He finally noted that the federal government once again expresses its gratitude to President Cyril Ramaphosa and the esteemed African elders and the special envoys that imparted their wisdom, insights and readiness to support in any way they are needed.

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