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Ethiopia denies Tigrayan forces pulled out of Afar region

Ethiopia denies Tigrayan forces pulled out of Afar region

THE Ethiopian government said that rebellious Tigrayan forces are still in the neighbouring region of Afar, despite a spokesman for the Tigrayan forces announcing their withdrawal days earlier. Government spokesperson Legesse Tulu told state media that the news that Tigrayan forces had left Afar were "big lies." Afar Police Commissioner Ahmed Harif told Reuters on Thursday that Tigrayan forces were still in four districts bordering Tigray - Koneba, Abala, Berhale and Magale - and had not moved since Monday. Getachew Reda, the spokesman for the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), the party that controls Tigray, did not respond to requests…
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U.S. paves way for more sanctions over Ethiopia’s Tigray conflict

U.S. paves way for more sanctions over Ethiopia’s Tigray conflict

DAPHNE PSALEDAKIS THE United States on Friday paved the way for further sanctions to be imposed on parties to the conflict in northern Ethiopia, where thousands have been killed and millions are in need of humanitarian assistance. A new executive order allows Washington to take punitive action against those in the Ethiopian and Eritrean governments, the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) and the Amhara regional government if they continue to pursue military conflict over negotiations, senior U.S. administration officials said. The move, which increases pressure on the parties to come to the negotiating table and bring an end to the…
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Young men mobilise against Tigray forces

Young men mobilise against Tigray forces

MAGGIE FICK and DAWIT ENDESHAW  RESIDENTS of Ethiopia's Amhara region said some young men were responding to a weekend call to arms by their president, as Amhara's government denied that forces from neighbouring Tigray had advanced further into the region. An eight-month-old war between Ethiopia's central government and the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), the party that controls Tigray, has spread to neighbouring parts of northern Ethiopia, risking further destabilisation of Africa's second-most populous nation. On Sunday Agegnehu Teshager, president of the Amhara regional government had called on "all young people" to take up arms against TPLF fighters, who say…
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Fears of new phase of civil war in Ethiopia

Fears of new phase of civil war in Ethiopia

DAWIT ENDESHAW ETHIOPIA’S Amhara region has declared that it will go on the offensive against forces from the neighbouring Tigray region, as advancing Tigrayans bear down on Amhara-held territory, potentially opening a major new phase in Ethiopia's civil war. The Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), which has recaptured most of its home region in the past three weeks after an abrupt reversal in an eight-month war, has vowed to retake western Tigray, an expanse of fertile territory controlled by Amhara forces who seized it during the conflict. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who abruptly pulled central government troops out of most…
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Tigray as no longer ‘centre’ of conflict

Tigray as no longer ‘centre’ of conflict

DAWIT ENDESHAW ETHIOPIAN Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed acknowledged government troops had left Tigray's regional capital Mekelle after months of fighting, saying it was because the city was no longer the "centre of gravity for conflicts". Another government figure said the troops could return in weeks if needed - the first statements by federal officials since Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) forces took the city this week in a major turn of events in the conflict. But a spokesman for the TPLF called Abiy's comments a "lie", saying that government troops lost and were forced to leave Mekelle. He also said…
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Ethiopia bars journalists from flying to Tigray regional vote -passengers

Ethiopia bars journalists from flying to Tigray regional vote -passengers

AT least 12 people, including four journalists and a senior think tank analyst, have been barred from flying to Tigray, four of the passengers said after Ethiopian security officials said the region's elections later this week were illegal. Ethiopia's upper house said on Saturday plans by the Tigray region to hold an election on September 9 for regional parliament and other positions were unconstitutional, setting up a potential clash between the central government and the powerful Tigray People's Liberation Front. The TPLF, which runs the northern province, has said the vote will go ahead despite pressure from the central government.…
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Hundreds of buildings burned around Tigray town

Hundreds of buildings burned around Tigray town

FIRES that appear to have been deliberately set destroyed more than 500 structures this week in and around Ethiopia's Gijet town, an analysis of satellite imagery shared with Reuters has found, adding credence to reports of continued conflict in parts of the northern region of Tigray. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed declared victory over a rebellious regional force, the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), at the end of November after its fighters withdrew from the region's main cities and towns. But sporadic fighting continues in some parts of Tigray, according to residents and United Nations assessments. The government has acknowledged isolated…
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Sudan’s offer to broker ceasefire in Tigray “unnecesary”

Sudan’s offer to broker ceasefire in Tigray “unnecesary”

KHALID ABDELAZIZ SUDAN’S Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok has visited Ethiopia briefly with what three senior Sudanese government officials said was an offer to broker a ceasefire in its northern Tigray region, a proposal Ethiopia said was unnecessary because fighting had stopped. Hamdok, who was accompanied by Sudanese security officials, planned to present his concerns about threats to Sudan's security along its border with Tigray during the visit, the officials said. However, Hamdok returned within a few hours from what Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed had earlier described as a two-day trip. Fighting erupted on November 4 between Ethiopia's government and…
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First NGO aid gets to Ethiopia’s Tigray, businesses to re-open

First NGO aid gets to Ethiopia’s Tigray, businesses to re-open

THE first non-governmental aid convoy since fighting has arrived in the capital of Ethiopia's northern Tigray region, as the government ordered businesses to re-open and officials to return to work. The federal government restricted access to Tigray after fighting began on November 4 between its troops and the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), a political party that ruled the province. So far the conflict in Africa's second-most populous nation is believed to have killed thousands of people and displaced around 950,000. But the tempo of fighting seems to have slowed since the government announced the capture of the regional capital…
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Ethiopia returning Eritrean refugees to Tigray camps; U.N. concerned over move

Ethiopia returning Eritrean refugees to Tigray camps; U.N. concerned over move

ETHIOPIA's government has announced it was returning Eritrean refugees to camps they had fled in Tigray, a move that provoked alarm from the United Nations refugee agency after a month-long conflict that is believed to have killed thousands of people in the northern region. The United Nations and other aid agencies say they have been denied access to some 96,000 refugees in Tigray since fighting erupted on November 4 between the government and a rebellious regional force. They believe food is running out at refugee camps there, and have expressed concern about reports of continued clashes in some areas. The…
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