Addis Abeba — Ethiopia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) in a statement expressed disappointment at the resolution presented by the European Union on the situation of human rights in Tigray and was adopted at the 47th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council today. Ethiopia described the move as "politically motivated".
This comes at the heels of the passing of a resolution by the UN Human Rights Council that expressed deep concern about abuses in Tigray region of Ethiopia and called for the swift withdrawal of Eritrean troops accusing it of exacerbating the conflict in the region. The text for the resolution was submitted on behalf of the European Union (EU) by Slovenia and passed by 20 for, 14 against and 13 abstentions.
"The Government of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia expresses its disappointment at the resolution by the European Union on the situation of human rights in Tigray adopted at the 47th Session of the United Nations Human Rights Council," the statement said.
Ethiopia further said that it has agreed to the deployment of the joint investigation team composed of the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission and Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to inquire into human rights violations allegedly committed during the crisis in Tigray. "The joint team commenced its investigation in May this year and is expected to finalize its work in August 2021. In addition, investigations are being expanded in scope by coordinating the efforts of the military justice system, regional law enforcement authorities and federal investigators and prosecutors."
"Since the proposal was put forth by the European Union at the 47th Session of the Human Rights Council, the Government of Ethiopia has been appealing for the withdrawal of the resolution on the premise that first, it is premature, and second, it interferes with and undermines the integrity of the ongoing joint investigations. It has made its case clear before the Council, pleaded for the investigation to run its course and called on the august body to provide the necessary time and space for the investigations to be completed. All its efforts, however, were to no avail and, in its view, there is no moral nor legal ground to justify the untimely adoption of a politically motivated resolution. Constructive engagement, rather than a hasty decision by the Council, would have contributed to expeditiously bring the ongoing efforts to a successful conclusion. For these reasons, Ethiopia rejects this resolution."
The statement concluded by adding, "Let it be known that those who were involved in committing crimes will be brought to justice and punished to the full extent of the law. The Government of Ethiopia once again reiterates its commitment to fulfill its national and international human rights obligation." AS