Who Will Sit at Table of Ethiopia's Planned National Dialogue?

Western powers have recently stepped up pressure on Ethiopia to de-escalate violence as reports of horrific human rights abuses came to light. Ethiopian lawmakers voted overwhelmingly in favor of establishing a commission for national dialogue.

Despite this, officials said talks would exclude Tigrayan leaders and the Oromo Liberation Army, both of which have been fighting the Ethiopian national army and declared terrorist organisations by the East African nation, writes Deutsche Welle.

The commission may be an effort to respond to the international community's persistent calls for a ceasefire and inclusive dialogue to resolve the conflict, said Tsedale Lemma, CEO of Jakenn Publishing, publisher of the prominent Addis Standard magazine.

Lemma said that when the international community stressed opening inclusive dialogues between warring parties, there was "no ambiguity on the need for such dialogue to be truly inclusive by having various stakeholders, including armed groups, be a part of the process."

Ethiopia's months-long conflict is believed to have caused the deaths of tens of thousands of people and displaced millions. At least ten million people are threatened by food insecurity and famine-like conditions.

InFocus

A general food distribution point in Afar, Ethiopia, August 30, 2021.

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