The Eritrean authorities acknowledged for the primary time Friday that its troops are lively within the Tigray battle zone in northern Ethiopia, in a letter from Sophia Tesfamariam, the Eritrean ambassador to the United Nations.
Tesfamariam wrote the letter in response to final week’s U.N. Safety Council assembly, as a way to register Eritrea’s objection to claims of sexual abuse by troopers and different allegations made by Mark Lowcock, head of the humanitarian help company UNOCHA, and Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the U.S. ambassador to the U.N.
“To start with, allow us to get the information straight,” said Tesfamariam. “The disaster within the Tigray Area of Ethiopia erupted solely as a result of the TPLF clique – supported and emboldened for many years by sure powers – unleashed an enormous, preemptive assault on all of the contingents of your entire Ethiopian Northern Command.”
The aim for the Tigray regional forces, she stated, was to grab energy from the Ethiopian army with the purpose of invading Eritrea. The 2 international locations ended a decades-long standoff in 2018 after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki efficiently negotiated a peace deal.
However that peace remained fragile as ongoing ethnic battle continued within the Ethiopian north. Final 12 months’s TPLF offensive positioned strain on each Abiy’s administration and the take care of the Eritreans, who didn’t beforehand admit their involvement in Ethiopia regardless of a number of calls from the worldwide neighborhood to take action.
“Because the looming grave risk has been largely thwarted, Eritrea and Ethiopia have agreed – on the highest ranges – to embark on the withdrawal of Eritrean forces and the simultaneous redeployment of Ethiopian contingents alongside the worldwide boundary,” stated Tesfamariam.
The letter, meant for the members of the Safety Council, additionally expressed Eritrea’s anger on the accusations made by Lowcock and Thomas-Greenfield, calling them outrageous and “a vicious assault on the tradition and historical past of our folks.”
Picture: Tesfamariam file, UN/Loey Felipe