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[l] at 11/29/22 2:49am
0 Facebook 2 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Health worker Mengistu Atalay attends to a newborn baby, asphyxiated at birth, in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Mai Tsebri Primary Hospital.  Photo: ©UNICEF Ethiopia/2021/Demissew Bizuwerk Addis Abeba -A report by the UN released yesterday revealed that an estimated 30% children in the Tigray region are facing acute malnutrition while more than five million people are in need of food assistance as humanitarian supply arriving in the region remain far from what is needed to meet the huge needs. The Tigray region has been under what the UN itself had called a “de facto blockade” for more than a year, which contributed to the immense needs including acute malnutrition and deaths from hunger. UNICEF had flagged the alarming rise in child malnutrition in the Tigray region as far back as June 2021. “More young children and babies slide dangerously close to sickness and potential death from malnutrition, UNICEF warned then, the world cannot permit that to happen.” In the last two weeks, there has been some gradual but tangible improvements in access into the Tigray region following the recent Cessation of Hostilities agreement, the UN said, however, what has arrived in Tigray remains far from what is needed to meet the huge needs there. More than 5 million people are in need of food assistance and an estimated 30 per cent of children are facing acute malnutrition. Access to most parts of neighboring areas of Amhara and Afar has improved in recent weeks. However, we need to scale-up our work to help all those in need, the UN said. From the 15th to the 24th of November, more than 450 trucks carrying aid, by the Government and by the UN and NGOs, have arrived in Tigray. “The majority of this is food aid and some of it is medical and agricultural supplies. Some fuel and cash supplies have also been brought in. Sustaining and building on these movements to ensure that the required food and other items can reach all those in need is critical.” The inadequacy of the humanitarian supply reaching Tigray was reflected by Atnket Mezgebo, head of the Tigray Agriculture and Natural Resources Development Bureau, who told the regional media on 27 November that over 6.5 million people in Tigray werein urgent need of humanitarian aid. He said although more than 36,000 quintals of humanitarian aid reached Tigray following the signed peace agreement, it is a limited supply in comparison to the scope of the humanitarian crisis in the region. According to the UN, in addition to the humanitarian crisis in Tigray, Afar, Amhara regions, Ethiopia is experiencing a historic drought, and, in the Bale zone of Oromia and the Liban zone of the Somali region, there is an ongoing cholera outbreak. “Nearly 500 people have been affected, including 20 deaths, and hundreds of thousands more people remain at risk. The UN and partners are providing health and water and sanitation assistance.” Furthermore, conflict in western Oromia also continues to drive people from their homes and has hampered our ability to provide aid. According to the latest revised humanitarian response plan which is based on data as of June-July 2022, continued insecurity, including conflicts and multiple episodes of violence, as well as the ongoing drought that affected several parts of Ethiopia drove the need for Ethiopia’s mid-year humanitarian response to rise to $3.335 billion from US$ 3.085 billion at the start of 2022. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Horn of Africa, News, Tigray regional state, Humanitarian Crisis in Tigray, African Union, United Nations, Op/Ed, Africa, Social Affairs]

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[l] at 11/29/22 1:35am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Commissioner General Demelash G/Michae and Ambassador Zhao Zhiyuan during the handover ceremony. Picture: Federal Police Addis Abeba The Chinese government has provided the Ethiopian Federal Police with five Corolla Cross patrol vehicles, a bullet-proof vehicle, a Communication Upgrading System worth more than US$600, 000. The donation also included digital forensic laboratory equipment and cash. Chinese Ambassador to Ethiopia Zhao Zhiyuan handed over the donation to Commissioner General of the Ethiopian Federal Police Demelash G/Michael at the compound of the Federal Police in the capital Addis Abeba. At the handing over ceremony, Commissioner General Demelash that Ethiopia and China are countries with a strong and long-standing relationship. Supporting the Federal Police with the necessary technological equipment will accelerate its roles in the national economic growth, business activities including providing safety and security to investments. Furthermore, the Commissioner General said that terrorism, piracy and other cross-border crimes are not only security threats but also cause losses to investment and economic growth. Ambassador Zhiyuan on his part noted that the relationship between the two countries has lasted for many centuries and said that the Chinese government will continue to provide various technological support to further strengthen the efforts by by the Ethiopian Federal Police to support its ongoing institutional transformation. The members of the delegation led by the Ambassador has also toured the technology transfer being carried out by the Ethiopian Federal Police, according to information from the Federal Police.

[Category: Ethiopia, Horn of Africa, China in Ethiopia, News, Diplomacy, China, Politics, Africa]

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[l] at 11/28/22 7:30am
0 Facebook 2 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email A resident in the Irob district whose house is reportedly shelled by Eritrean forces shows the wreckage left in the wake of the shelling to the local Tigray TV. Photo: Screenshot Addis Ababa Getachew Reda, Spokesperson for the Tigray Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF) and member Tigrayan peace talks delegation, said Eritrean forces have continued killing civilians including children and women while the Tigrayan forces are carrying out dis-engagement as agreed in the Pretoria/Nairobi peace pact. “Eritrean forces are still killing civilians, ransacking, destroying, and looting property at will. In May Abay last week, they were summarily executed hundreds of women and children” Getachew tweeted on Sunday. It is the latest in a continuous accusations of atrocities put forward by Tigrayan officials against Eritrean forces since the peace agreement was first reached in South Africa on 02 November. Earlier on Sunday, citing eyewitnesses and aid workers, the AP reported that allies of Ethiopia’s federal military are looting property and carrying out mass detentions in Tigray. Eritrean troops and forces from the neighboring Ethiopian region of Amhara — who have been fighting on the side of Ethiopia’s federal military in the Tigray conflict — have looted businesses, private properties, vehicles, and health clinics in Shire, a northwestern town that was captured from Tigray forces last month, the AP news said, adding that civilians accused of aiding Tigray forces are also being detained in the southern Tigray town of Alamata. A statement from the regional state issued on 19 November accused Eritrean forces of committing crimes against humanity, looting properties belonging to individual and religious institutions. On the same day footage aired on the regional media, Tigray TV, also showed dead bodies scattered on the ground which it said were some of 63 civilian victims, including ten children, killed by Eritrean forces in Egela, Central Tigray. The regional Tigray TV also reported Sunday on continued heavy shelling of the Irob district in eastern Tigray by Eritrean forces despite the peace deal. “It’s obvious that the Eritreans have no appetite for any peaceful arrangement between the Central government and Tigray as it would stand in the way of their nefarious plans in the Horn. The question is will our partners for peace in Addis do their part of the deal to protect civilians and to do whatever it takes to convince the ‘external and non-ENDF forces’ to leave Tigray? It’s our hope and expectation that they discharge their part of the deal,” Getachew said. Commander of the Tigrayan combatants Lieutenant General Tadesse Werede in his latest interview with Tigray TV, said implementation of the peace agreement has commenced from the Tigrayan side. He added the disarmament of heavy weapons by the Tigrayan combatants is linked to Eritrean and Amhara forces’ withdrawal from the Tigray Region. Olusegun Obasanjo, High representative of the AU to the Horn of Africa and chief peace negotiator between Ethiopian government and Tigrayan authorities, while visiting Mekelle, capital of Tigray Region on 24 November told the senior leadership of the regional state that, “no country should accept the presence of foreign country on its land” pointing out that his visit aims to determine how issues including the issue of foreign troops can be settled best. & we support @_AfricanUnion and HE Obasanjos focus on “issues of human rights and how to get them all settled, so that peace, security, stability, progress and the welfare and well-being of all the people of Ethiopia can be ensured.” (2/2) https://t.co/tYLg1IAi3p— Bureau of African Affairs (@AsstSecStateAF) November 26, 2022 Responding to a tweet by US State Department’s Bureau of African Affairs that welcomed Obasanjo’s visit to Tigray and his subsequent statement about the unwanted presence of foreign troops, Eritrea’s minister of Information Yemane Gebremeskel tweeted “defense architectures between sovereign African States is not subject to prior endorsement, or veto by extraneous powers”. Under “Disarmament of Tigray armed combatants,” of the Declaration of the Executive Plan point 2.1/D, it is stated that “disarmament of heavy weapons will be done concurrently with the withdrawal of foreign and non-ENDF forces from the region.” The Federal government did not comment on the accusations of the atrocities being committed by Eritrean forces, nor is there report on the status of their withdrawal from the Tigray Region. Addis Standard’s efforts to get comments from both the federal government Communication Services and the Ethiopian National Defense Forces (ENDF) were unsuccessful. Public Relations head of the ENDF Colonel Getnet Adane, refrained from commenting on the issue, and said that we should wait for official statements. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Horn of Africa, News, Armed Conflict in Tigray, Humanitarian Crisis in Tigray, African Union, Africa]

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[l] at 11/28/22 4:59am
0 Facebook 0 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email 12 July 2022. Azati Kitli IDP site hosting conflict IDPs in Mambuk Zone, Benishangul-Gumuz Region. Shewanesh Chali (25) lost her husband as a result of conflict about a year ago andstruggles to keep her two children alive. Credit: Liz Loh-Taylor for OCHA Ethiopia. Addis Abeba As a resulted continued insecurity, including conflicts and multiple episodes of violence as well as the ongoing drought that affected several parts of Ethiopia drove the need for Ethiopias mid-year humanitarian response to rise to $3.335 billion from US$ 3.085 billion at the start of 2022, according to the revised humanitarian response plan which is based on data as of June-July 2022. However, the original Humanitarian Response Plan 2022, targeting more than 20 million people with life-saving interventions remains significantly underfunded, the report revealed. At mid year the HRP has received only 39.2% of the US$ 3.085 billion required. The unmet requirements for food response stands at 38 per cent of the annual requirements still unmet at mid-year. The number of people in need has increased by almost 11% compared to the beginning of the year, according to Dr Catherine Sozi, UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Ethiopia. Accordingly, the report shows that the number of people in need has risen to 22.6 million from 20.4 million originally targeted at the onset of 2022. Children constitute 52% of the people in need of food aid, whereas women and men constitute 24% each and people with disabilities constitute 18%. The mid-year review is jointly prepared by the Ethiopian Government and humanitarian partners, including the United Nations and International and National Non-Government Organizations and has been revised six months into the year to take stock of the response to date and ensure we are prioritizing the immediate lifesaving needs of the most vulnerable people including through the, according to Dr. Shiferaw Teklemariam, Commissioner for the Disaster Risk Management Commission of Ethiopia. At least an additional $1.8 billion, representing 60 per cent of the total amount needed this year, is still required for the humanitarian response in Ethiopia until the end of the year Dr Sozi Man-made and natural hazards have increased hardship and displacement of millions of Ethiopians this year. Communities across southern and north- eastern parts of Ethiopia are suffering from a devastating drought, the worst in forty years, following four consecutive failed rainy seasons since late 2020, Dr. Shiferaw said in the report. Humanitarian partners are appealing for urgent funding to support the response across Ethiopia. Our partners are reprogramming their response to address the most urgent needs and to sustainlife-saving operations. At least an additional $1.8 billion, representing 60 per cent of the total amount needed this year, is still required for the humanitarian response in Ethiopia until the end of the year, Dr Sozi said. I thank donors for their unrelentless support and urge them to increase their commitments to the humanitarian operations and to give generously, in solidarity with the peopleof Ethiopia. According to the joint review, during the first half of 2022 Ethiopia has seen growing humanitarian needs driven by the lack of a peaceful solution to the conflict in Tigray, Afar and Amhara regional states; the continuation of violence in other parts of the country; and the expansion of the drought affecting the south and east of the country. The humanitarian truce in the Tigray region that was announced in March has contributed to improved delivery of humanitarian assistance and allowed humanitarian partners to scale up their response to the people in need in the region, the report said. In Afar and Amhara, humanitarian operations were also scaled-up as the level of conflict reduced and hundreds of thousands of people returned to their homes, with millions of people assisted; but some near the Tigray boundary remained hard to reach. On the contrary, in Oromia and Benishangul-Gumuz humanitarian operations have been significantly constrained by insecurity and lack of access resulting in reduced or absence of humanitarian partners in some areas. Some woredas remain inaccessible in Oromia (East and West Wollega, and Guji zones) and Benishangul regions, hindering sustained delivery of food assistance. In addition to health, nutrition, education and logistics, agricultural productivity is one of the areas affected by the combination of conflict, drought and flooding in several parts of the county and in need of support. An estimated 17.5 million people across the country require agricultural support. The limited access to agricultural inputs, particularly fertilizers and staple crop seeds is a major threat to the main agricultural season, the joint report cautioned. Furthermore, Ethiopia is experiencing poor economic conditions driven by the continued depreciation of the Ethiopian Birr (ETB) and high inflation, which is putting pressure on markets and driving high commodity and food prices. The situation is compounded by the Russia-Ukraine conflict that has affected the supply of some imported products and food items. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Ethiopia Drought, Horn of Africa, Ethiopia Crisis, News, Society & Economy, Africa, Social Affairs]

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[l] at 11/28/22 4:31am
0 Facebook 0 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Addis Abeba: Addis Abeba police says five senior officials of land management office of Lemi Kura sub-city are on the run and being sought by law as part of government’s anti-corruption crackdown. According to police, head of land management office Habiba Umer, her deputy Tesfaye Girma, land management officers Bekalu Tsadek and Chemdessa Fulea, as well as Leul Terfe, who was chief executive of woreda four of Lemi Kura sub-city went on hiding. Police said the individuals are wanted on suspicion crimes of misusing their power to prepare fake documents, and carry out grand theft of government and public land. It called on the public to give information on the whereabouts of the suspects. Speaking to state broadcaster, Adanech Abiebie, Mayor of Addis Abeba, however hinted that Habiba Umer, head of land management office of the Lemi Kura sub-city who is on top of police list may have fled the country already. The mayor spoke in length about difficulties the city administration is facing in terms of bringing corrupts to court of law in the face of a strong network of corrupts in government structure and lack of cooperation from the court. Last week the city administration also said 12 out of 37 individuals suspected of corruption were arrested in Lemi-Kura sub-city. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Addis Abeba, News, Addis Abeba City Administration, Africa, Law & Justice]

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[l] at 11/28/22 1:36am
0 Facebook 0 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Addis Abeba: Major General Demsew Amenu of the Ethiopian National Defense Forces Intelligence Directorate and Lt. General Marshal Stephen Babanen, Chief of Military Intelligence of the South Sudan Defense Force, met Saturday 26 November in Addis Abeba to discuss continued cooperation on peace and security. The two top military intelligence officers noted the long history of cooperation between the two countries and that the two nations would continue to work together in peace and security.The Chief of Military Intelligence of the South Sudan Defense Force, Lt. General Marshal Stephen Babanen, said that Ethiopia and South Sudan should ensure peace and security of the two countries. Major General Demsew Amenu pointed out that Ethiopia and South Sudan have a history of working together in all areas, and said that it is essential and preferable to work together in the field of security in order to maintain security in the future. Both parties agreed that there should be an intensive exchange of information on peace and security. South Sudanese gunmen frequently cross the border between the two countries and carry out multiple attacks leaving many dead in the Gambella region of Ethiopia. In March this year, Nabil Mahdi, Ethiopia’s Ambassador to South Sudan, met with South Sudanese Foreign Minister, Mayiik Ayii Deng, during which he called for an end to these repeated cross-border attacks by Murle militants targeting civilians in Gambella regional state. The Ambassador also called for a lasting solution to the recurring cross border attacks and the need to convene a joint cross border commission meeting to discuss the issue. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, South Sudan, Horn of Africa, News, Politics, Africa]

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[l] at 11/26/22 2:21am
0 Facebook 0 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Addis Abeba The National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) announced that it will hold a re-election at the Bule constituency, in Gedeo Zone of the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples (SNNP) Regional State, which is one of the constituencies where the board confirmed that there was “a large-scale violation of the law” during the 6th national election held on 21 June 2021 and 29 September 2021. The board in its announcement said that the re-election will be held on 06 February 2023 along with the referendum that will be held in six zones and five special districts in the South-Central Region. The board’s communication department told Addis Standard that after examining an appeal from one of the running parties, the Gedeo Peoples Democratic Organization (GPDO), on irregularities on the election, the board ruled to re-run the election held in the Bule constituency in Bule woreda of the Gedeo zone. The board through its mobile representatives looked into the claims raised by the appellant that accused ruling party officials for intervention on the election process; claim on the arrest of some of the its members; hindrances on the observation and mobility of its representatives while officials of the ruling party were let to move around, the communication department said. The board also added that it is evaluating enabling conditions to undertake re-elections in other constituencies in different regions where the 6th national election could not be undertaken for enabling security circumstances. It is recalled that last year in June the board decided that 54 constituencies affected by ballot paper defects were set to undertake re-election on September 6, 2021 alongside 40 other constituencies where the NEBE previously said elections cannot take place due to security reasons and voters’ registration irregularities. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, News, National Electorla Board of Ethiopia, Ethiopia Elections 2021, Politics]

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[l] at 11/26/22 12:33am
0 Facebook 0 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Addis Abeba Vaisala,a Finnish company that specialized in weather, environmental, and industrial measurements powered Ethiopia’s new weather radar network with solar energy. Utilizing clean solar energy power will allow Ethiopia’s new weather radar network to operate with highest availability so decision-makers can focus on safety, the company said. The solar powered weather radar is the first one in a network of 4 C-band weather radars to be installed in Ethiopia. It further said that the endeavor will modernize Ethiopia’s weather and climate observations by powering a C-band Weather Radar with a solar power system on-site. The solar panels and backup batteries ensure constant uptime of the weather radar, which in turn enables weather authorities maintain reliable operations and honor Vaisala’s commitment to environmental sustainability. The weather radar network in Ethiopia is renewed and expanded as part of a project to advance the country’s capability in weather forecasting. To overcome challenges posed by an unreliable electricity grid, the new solar power system will keep the weather radar continuously operational and with its battery backup system for up to four days even without solar radiation. “Climate change feeds extreme weather around the world, including Ethiopia, where people are more vulnerable to the impact of severe weather events like flooding, drought, and hail,” said Jarkko Sairanen, Executive Vice President, Weather and Environment, Vaisala. “Through the solar powered weather radar network we bring another industry first solution, which raises the capabilities of Ethiopian authorities to provide their society insights in a reliable way in a difficult environment while simultaneously providing another step toward a healthier planet for us all. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, News, renewable energy]

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[l] at 11/25/22 7:48am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email From left: MPs Asemahegn Asres, Ashebir Woldegiorgis (PhD) and Aregash Tekle (from right to left) Photo: House of Peoples Representative/Facebook Addis Abeba Members of the House of People’s Representatives have expressed their fierce opposition against a proposed TV license fee outlined in a new draft bill to re-establish the Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation (EBC). In their 6th regular meeting of the second year of their term in office, the law makers have said Articles 17-20 of the proposed draft bill that allows the state broadcaster EBC to collect license fees from the public and penalize those refused to pay are not appropriate. According to the proposed bil,l which was later on approved into a law despite oppositions from MPs, citizens will have to pay 120 Birr per year for one television set in their homes doubling from what was previously 60 birr. The bill also says citizens who do not pay the annual license fee will be imprisoned from one to five years or will be fined from 1000 to 5000 Birr. For businesses, it has been stipulated that if they fail to comply with the law, their business license will not be renewed based on an agreement EBC is going to make with Ministry of Trade and Regional Integration. According to the parliamentarians, the state broadcaster must provide interesting programs and up-to-date information that the public would choose to follow, before it starts to ask for a license fee. MP Asemahgn Asres said that the Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation has not been doing any significant journalistic work over the past seven decades since its establishment rather than “serving as a mouthpiece for different regimes”. The MP said, it is not operating free of political influence and gives no equal access to all political parties. Neither does it work to be a competitive media with other media. Another MP Negash Bulala said, the institution is not offering appropriate media services to the public, which makes it incompetent.” “It is not appropriate to approve a proclamation to collect money from the public at this time when the broadcaster is losing listeners, MP Ashebir Woldegiorgis (PhD) said, adding that, “Its products should be competitive and preferred over other media”.  MPs also oppose the fact that the license fee penalty is linked to renewal of business licenses, while others raise questions over why a citizen should be forced to pay money for a TV station that they don’t watch its programs. Besides, they said, as a public media, it shouldn’t use only one language for most of its time and that it would not be appropriate to endorse the bill allowing to collect fees from people to whom it provides no services in their mother languages. Despite objections from the member of parliaments the bill has been approved into law being proclamation No. 1278/2015 with 44 votes against and 24 abstentions out of 240 members present. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Freedom of the press, News, House of People's Representatives, Politics, Africa]

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[l] at 11/25/22 4:46am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Alemayehu Baudi. Photo: Screenshot Addis Ababa The Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples (SNNP) region Peace and Security Bureau said that decision has been made to put the entire Gurage zone under the rule of an organized command post as of 25 November. In a presser he gave to the local broadcaster, Debub TV, the bureaus head Alemayehu Baudi said illegal and destructive activities have been carried out by irregular groups in the zone under the guise of demands for statehood, and that these activities cannot be stopped using the regular law enforcement system. Accordingly, Alemayehy said that security forces are authorized to take a number of measures and legal actions against groups accused of actively taking part in destruction, including those who participate in activities that are not allowed by the law, and those who are doing any activity in any illegal way outside of the auspices of legally mandated government officials. On 18 August this year, a region-wide military command post had already issued restrictions against holding any governmental and non-governmental meetings in woredas and towns of the Gurage zone for an indefinite period of time.  Regardless, Gurage zone has seen protests which include suspending civil service works and business activities as part of the zone’s push for own statehood and increased self-administration. The latest of such protest took place on Friday 18 November when residents in Wolkite city, the capital city of the Gurage zone, staged protests boycotting routine activities in the city and its environs which included suspending civil service works and business activities. But heavy crackdown in the aftermath of the protests saw more than 100 people detained by security forces. The protests are in opposition to a decision made by Ethiopias House of Federation in August, to restructure the Gurage zone into a new regional state in a cluster with Hadiya, Halaba, Kambata Tambaro, Silte and Yam special woreda. Alemayehu did not mention who the irregular groups he was referring to but he said, that they want disrupt the normal functions of the government in the zone and to confuse the people. He added that the groups are carrying out activities that creates discontent between the Gurage people and the other peoples of the region. Due to inability to control these groups with the regular and local law enforcement, a command post comprising Federal Police, SNNP special forces and other security agencies will be in charge of the security situations of the zone, he said. He admitted that 70 individuals suspected of having roles in the illegal activities have been arrested so far. Unauthorized meeting and public gatherings have been banned under the rule of the command post. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Horn of Africa, News, SNNPR, Politics, Africa, Law & Justice]

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[l] at 11/24/22 6:27am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email A Tigrayan woman refugee in the Um Rakuba refugee camp tries to protect herself from wind-blown dust. Gedaref region, Sudan, December 2020. Photo: MSF By Beka Atoma Boru @bek_boru Addis Abeba The less than expected peace pact between the Federal Government of Ethiopia and Tigrayan authorities held signed on 02 November in Pretoria, South Africa has entertained contradictory responses. Since the announcement of the peace accord, the deal has grasped the attention of not only Ethiopians including those in Tigray but also the international community. Officials, ordinary people, scholars, and political parties enunciated their reactions. UN Secretary-General António Guterres among others said that he believes the agreement is a promising start to wind up the bloody war in the country, urging the international community to support the bold step taken by the two parties. The peace agreement brought about rays of hope to people in dire situations from lack of much needed humanitarian aid including medical services and to families that have been disconnected for over a year due to blackout of basic services including communications and banking. Medhanit Shumiye, 40, is a mother of three and lives in Addis Abeba. She doesn’t know the whereabouts and existence of her relatives since the outbreak of the war. Despite her dreams of a good day to come, she has been despairing of her isolation from her parents, relatives and friends for two solid years. She sees the peace agreement as a golden opportunity to people like her, to know the existence of their family, to meet them and to improve the entire dire situation in the northern region in general. The war devastated the entire Tigray, and parts of Afar and Amhara Regions. Hundreds of thousands are believed to have died and millions displaced from their villages and they were subjected to different abominations and atrocities throughout the course of the war. Now, the feeling among many people is that the peace deal will be a stepping stone to restore life to normalcy. But, will the peace agreement hold? The commitment by the Ethiopian government and TPLF to proceed inline with the provisions of the Pretoria agreement and abide by it, is very crucial indication of the success of the agreement signed between the two parties, Bereket Diriba, a Chavening scholar and political and security analyst told Addis Standard. “The frustration created by the war, the immense losses it resulted in terms of material and human life cost, the enormous economic stress created by the war, along with the international communities’ pressure, mainly the US, could force the parties to abide by the agreement,” he said. “Pacification of languages and terminologies on government-controlled and TPLF affiliated media, following the signing of the CoHA are signs that indicate the agreement could last,” Bereket added. Yohannes Woldemariam (PhD), a researcher on the politics of the Horn of Africa based in the US, also said the peace agreement could bring peace for the short term for several reasons despite reservations on the durability of the peace. There was a lot of arm twisting that was going on The pressure particularly from the US is a major factor that could make the two parties commit themselves to the terms of the agreement, Yohannes told Addis Standard. “It [the peace agreement] was done under a heavy pressure from the Americans. There was a lot of arm twisting that was going on,” he said. The US has said that the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement (CoHA) signed in Pretoria, South Africa between the Ethiopian government and the Tigrayan leadership must be fully implemented to consider restoring partnerships with Ethiopia which includes restoring AGOA and supporting IMF, World Bank etc loans to Ethiopia. Yohannes also stated that the economic cost of the war and the level of humanitarian crisis in Tigray are other prospective factors to make the parties abide by the peace agreement. “The siege[on Tigray] was merciless in terms of the number of people dying from hunger and lack of medicine” he said, while also noting that, “the economic leverage also came into play hugely because this was a very expensive war. Those drones cost money,” he added. However there are underlying issues begging questions and uncertainties on whether the agreement could bring lasting peace, despite the aforementioned factors and re-affirmed commitment to the cessation of hostilities agreement of the two warring parties. Yohannes says, “the cause of failures in peace agreements usually relates to a breakdown in their implementations. It is very important that the agreement is not only clear and comprehensive but also that the parties have the same understanding of its terms and the nature of obligations which they are required to adhere to”. Thus, he has doubts whether the two parties are equally clear on the terms of this agreement. “I think from the point of view of Tigray, with this agreement they got something in terms of this clause that says the constitutional framework. Because with the constitutional framework, they can get Wolkait and the Raya areas within Tigray at least in theory,” he says. He added, “that is a time bomb right there” given the opposition that arises from the Amhara political camp. The Amhara regional president had already said that the regional government would not negotiate on the issues of Wolkait in western Tigray. Bereket also notes the discontent regarding the peace agreement among the Amhara nationalist political forces. “They [the Amharas] feel marginalized from the peace agreement. Some even consider the CoHA as a threat to their recently gained control over the disputed areas like Wolkait, Raya etc” he said. Isaias ‘The elephant in the room’ The Pretoria CoHA states under Article 6 that the Tigrayan combatants would be disarmed, demobilized and reintegrated within 30 days of the signing of the agreement. Subsequently, the top commanders of both the Ethiopian National Defense Forces and the Tigrayan armed combatants have agreed in Nairobi on modalities of orderly and successful implementation of the agreement which includes the disarmament of Tigrayan fighters. However the issue of disarmament has faced rejection particularly from the Tigrayan diaspora who according to Yohannes were, “The financiers and the PR of Tigray” during the war. Yohannes said, “the Social media propaganda that was being waged by the Tigrayan diaspora was extremely impactful. When that is lost from the equation and they turn against the Tigrayan leadership, that is a very significant factor”. “The Peace agreement from the point of view of Isaias is unexpected, and what he will do next matters” He argues that the issue of disarmament by its nature is “complicated” and the fact that it is conditioned on provision of security in Tigray, makes it more intricate. “How many heavy weapons are they [Tigrayan combatants] going to surrender? How is that going to be monitored? Who is going to determine that there is security in Tigray? The mistrust is very intense to begin with,” he said. Bereket also agrees that the Federal government and its security forces are “in absolute trust deficit in Tigray”. “The media coverage of the atrocities allegedly committed in the Tigray region created a fear that the ENDF may not be trusted to guarantee and respect the Tigrayan rights,” he added. In addition the fact that the Tigrayan leadership put the withdrawal of Eritrean troops and Amara forces from Tigray as a precondition to begin disarmament, makes Isaias, the leader of Eritrea, “the elephant in the room”, according to Yohannes. “The Peace agreement from the point of view of Isaias is unexpected, and what he will do next matters,” Yohannes said. “The media coverage of the atrocities allegedly committed in the Tigray region created a fear that the ENDF may not be trusted to guarantee and respect the Tigrayan rights,” Split in the Tigrayan camp? Another potential factor that could undermine the peace agreement is the divergence among the Tigrayans on what the end game of the war should have been. Yohannes said, “I don’t think there was unanimity even at the top level on what the end game of the war is within the TPLF. Some were looking for an end game within the framework of Ethiopia, and the younger more militant including those in the diaspora were looking for cessation”. “Some of the negotiators, only a few days ago, were heroes and now they are seen as traitors,” he added. According to Bereket, some of the Tigray diaspora communities and nationalist Tigrayans consider the CoHA “as a humiliating defeat for Tigrayans”. As a result, “With the support of the diaspora-based forces, members of the TDF might opt to continue the armed struggle” he said. Nevertheless, Bereket said, “these factors will not be enough to derail the agreement if the major stakeholders continue to abide by the agreement” given the fact that, “communities along the conflict affected areas and the general population in Ethiopia and Eritrea seem to have little interest in continuing the war and the agreement is already embraced”. However “for the agreement to result in full stability and recovery of the country, similar dialogue initiatives need to be replicated in areas that are currently suffering from conflict across Ethiopia”. For Yohannes though, there is yet another crucial factor that determines the durability of the peace agreement which is justice and accountability. “For the short term, yes, the agreement could bring peace, but what kind of peace would it be without justice?” he said. “If this was the solution that Abiy and the TPLF were looking for, why didn’t this take place two years ago? Why did (by some accounts) a million people need to die? Where is justice? Where is accountability?” he asks. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, In-depth Analysis, Tigray regional state, Armed Conflict in Tigray, Humanitarian Crisis in Tigray, Politics]

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[l] at 11/24/22 1:43am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email The WHO team have been engaged in increased activities to contain the latest Cholera outbreak in Ethiopia, strengthening the capacity and implementing a response to Cholera, which focuses on treatment and the prevention of infections. Photo: WHO Addis Abeba UN says 20 people have died and number of reported cases reached 491 as cholera outbreak spread to 41 kebeles of 4 woredas of Bale Zone of Oromia and 2 woredas of Liban zone of Somali region as of 23 November 2022. According to a new report by the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), 102 out of 491 reported cases are IDPs and additional close to 555,000 people are at high-risk in the six woredas. The report says number of affected people has increased by 28 per cent in the last two weeks. A preceding report put the death toll and number of cases at 9 and 330 respectively as of 31 October. Harana Buluk, Berbere, Delo Mena and Gura Damole in Bale zone of Oromia, and Quarsadula and Guradamole in neighboring Liban zone of Somali region are the woredas hit by the outbreak. In Guradamole woreda of Liban zone, cases are expanding at high pace, especially across IDP spontaneous sites where more than 60 per cent of the new affected caseloads are recorded, the report added. “The reported cases mostly fall within the age range of 0 to 14 years (with 28 per cent children under five), with 50 per cent being female.” “The use of unsafe water from contaminated water points is the most likely cause of this outbreak (most of the patients have reported collecting water from rivers and open wells). Limited access to water and sanitation (WASH) services, poor hygiene practices, including open defecation and lack of water treatment options are among the factors that have contributed to the rapid spread of the disease across the zones,” the report added. The Ethiopian Public Health Institute (EPHI) and Oromia Region Health Bureau (ORHB), with the support of the World Health Organization (WHO) and UNICEF, have deployed a multidisciplinary rapid response team (RRT) to the Bale zone to contain the outbreak. OCHA said response to the outbreak is hindered due to insufficient funding and limited aid organizations presence in the area. Adding that, “Coping mechanisms of the affected communities have been deteriorating due to multiple consecutive shocks, notably the current drought, conflict leading inter alia to a high prevalence of malnutrition, especially among the IDPs community”. The first cholera case was reported in Harana Buluk woreda of Bale zone on 27 August this year. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Health, Oromia Regional State, Somali Regional State, Horn of Africa, News, Africa, Social Affairs]

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[l] at 11/23/22 7:31am
0 Facebook 0 Twitter 1 Telegram 0 Email Mekelle Alula Aba Nega Airport. Photo: nationalparks.com Addis Ababa Ethiopian Airlines has announced that preparation is undertaking to resume its regular flights to the war-torn Tigray Region. Mesfin Tasew, the CEO of the Ethiopian Airlines Group, told the state daily, that the airline is making preparations to begin flight to the region which he said is believed to play an important role in facilitating delivery of humanitarian aid. According to the CEO, the planned flight follows the peace agreement reached between the government and the leaders of Tigray. The CEO mentioned that among the airports in the Tigray region, Mekelle and Shire airports are in good condition and are convenient to resume flights. However, the airport in Axum airport, one of Ethiopias top tourist destinations, is damaged in the conflict and needs to be repaired and adjusted to make it suitable for flights The Tigray region is one of the many destinations where the airline operates domestic flights and now it will be of great importance to speed up the access of humanitarian aid in addition to the normal services provided by it. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, News, Politics, #DailyScoop, Talk Business]

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[l] at 11/23/22 4:26am
0 Facebook 0 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Lieutenant General Tadesse Werede. Photo: TigrayTV Addis Abeba: Tigrayan forces top military leader Lieutenant General Tadesse Werede said the disarmament of heavy weapons of the Tigrayan combatants is linked to Eritrean and Amhara forces withdrawal from the Tigray Region. In an interview aired on the local Tigray TV on Tuesday, the general said implementation of the agreement has commenced on the Tigrayan side following the discussion held in Nairobi between himself and the chief commander of Ethiopian National Defense Forces (ENDF). He said his fighters have been debriefed on disarmament protocols and that their disengagement will follow within the next two to three days. On the activities directly related to our works, we are finalizing with the army…finalizing the orientation on the consensus about the peace from the army commanders all the way to lover [level]. We will probably finalize it completely in two (2) days all the way to the bottom, Lieutenant General Tadesse said. He further stated the next steps and said that it will be followed by the Tigary armys disengagement from the battle fronts to the place where the army will be deployed. As long as our logistics capacity or shipping capacity allows, we can also pick it up at once. Transporting may take a few days. Any Tigrayan force in the region moves from within a command system, he said, adding that Tigray region doesnt have any force outside of the established command system. There is no armed force other than this; The Ethiopian forces in Tigray say the same thing, so I dont think there will be anything out of control. The Declaration on the Modalities for the Implementation of the Pretoria agreement signed in Nairobi on November 12, 2022, under sub-clause 2.1 (a) dictates that orientation by the commanders for their respective forces will take place over a period of seven (7) days starting on the date of the commanders arrival to the regular position on 15 November 2022. Whereas, (b) states that, disengagement will take place over a period of four (4) days in four disengagement zones. The declaration further stipulates that, upon disengagement, the federal authorities shall assume federal responsibilities in accordance with the Constitution for all areas including the resumption of services, and outlines that disarmament of heavy weapons will be done concurrently with the withdrawal of foreign and non-ENDF forces from the region. General Tadesse also said withdrawal of Eritrean and Amhara forces from Tigray which according to him is the duty of ENDF, is necessary for the disarmament of heavy weapons of Tigrayan combatants to happen. He accused Eritrean forces of looting spiritual properties and committing atrocities on the people of Tigray, and urged the federal government to act on the withdrawal of Eritrean and Amhara forces saying that both “groups are not interested in peace, they want to continue the war”. This comes as the US pushes for the immediate implementation of the cessation of hostilities agreement signed on 02 November between Ethiopian government and Tigrayan authorities in Pretoria, South Africa. According to a statement released by the states department, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, during a phone call with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed On Tuesday, “underscored the importance of immediately implementing the cessation of hostilities agreement, including withdrawal of all foreign forces and concurrent disarmament of the Tigrayan forces”. The Statement further said Secretary Blinken “recognized ongoing efforts by the Ethiopian government to work towards unhindered humanitarian assistance and restoration of basic services in the Tigray Region as well as in the neighboring Afar and Amhara Regions” the statement added. The US has previously said the peace agreement must be fully implemented for the US to consider restoring partnerships with Ethiopia, and that it is committed to additional sanctions on Eritrea if they [Eritrean leaders] fail to pull out their troops from Ethiopia. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Horn of Africa, News, Tigray regional state, Armed Conflict in Tigray, Humanitarian Crisis in Tigray, African Union, Politics, Africa]

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[l] at 11/22/22 5:48am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 1 Telegram 0 Email Addis Abeba Raxio Data Center in Ethiopia (ET1) officially became the first Tier III certified independent data center in Ethiopia after receiving the Uptime Institute Tier III Certification on 21 October 2022. This certification was achieved after a diligent assessment and evaluation by the Uptime Institutes expert international teams to ensure Raxio ET1 meets the stringent requirements of Uptimes Tier III Certification, the data center said. Raxio Data Center kicked-off the construction of Ethiopias first private Tier III carrier neutral colocation data center at the ICT Park in Addis Abeba in March 2021. With this certification, Raxio ET1 becomes one of the few Tier III, privately owned, carrier-neutral data centers in Africa to receive this designation, which also includes Raxios facility in Uganda. The Uptime Institutes teams evaluated all aspects of the facilitys design and equipment, such as power, cooling, fire suppression and detection and others, in its certification process.To pass as a Tier III compliant data center, the mechanical and electrical infrastructure must be concurrently maintainable, meaning the data center has redundant capacity components and multiple power and cooling paths to the IT equipment. Tier III data centers offer redundant capacity allowing each and every component needed to support the IT processing environment to be shut down and maintained without impacting the facilitys operation and provision of services to customers. In addition to redundant capacity, ET1 also offers concurrent maintainability across all critical systems and subsystems, ensuring full redundancy in the event of unexpected shutdowns or failures. Concurrent maintainability is one of the most important design characteristics that clients require when outsourcing their data center needs, solidifying ET1s position as a globally competitive facility. Speaking on the announcement, Bewket Taffere, General Manager of Raxio Ethiopia says Being awarded Uptimes Tier III certification for ET1 is a clear testament to Raxios focus and emphasis on providing the highest quality of infrastructure and demonstrates the significant attention paid to the standard of services we are providing to the Ethiopian market. As an internationally accredited data center, ET1 will offer the quality and level of services customers require, improving Ethiopias ability to compete in an increasingly global environment. It took a lot of hard work and vision to make this achievement a reality, and were excited about the role we are playing locally and regionally, as Ethiopia continues to invest in the ICT economy. Robert Saunders, CTO of Raxio Group added This is a clear commitment that Raxio is developing world-class facilities in terms of design and construction to serve our markets. By partnering with Uptime Institute, we are investing in the technical due diligence of our facilities that both our local and international customers expect. We have engaged in a long-term partnership; this being our second certified data centre with many more to come. The Tier III certification is an evident commitment that Raxio ET1 will deliver the highest level of service availability in the market for its customers, which will include colocation for primary and disaster recovery needs, cross connection and remote hands services. The facility will accommodate Ethiopian, regional and international customers in the fast-growing ICT sector in the country. The Tier III certification is of paramount importance to demanding customers that use the facility to host their business-critical equipment, such as those in the financial services and healthcare sectors, as well as emerging companies and international customers looking to offer the next generation of ICT driven services in Ethiopia.The availability of a Tier III data center in Ethiopia is a monumental step forward in the provision of a technology infrastructure that will support hyper-growth technology enabled businesses, as well as the infrastructure for the growing number of internet users. Raxio ET1 also incorporates environmentally sustainable features developed with international engineering and operations standards to mitigate the rising costs of energy, while respecting the environment. With the combination of Tier III services and an environmentally respectful design, Raxio ET1 is setting the standard for premium colocation services.

[Category: Ethiopia, Innovation, News, Talk Business]

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[l] at 11/22/22 3:53am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Many health facilities in North-western Tigray haven been looted and vandalized, like this clinic in Debre Abay. Photo: MSF Addis Ababa: Despite data limitations from the Tigray regional state, where only 9% of health facilities were reported to be fully functional, the Ministry of Health estimated that at least US$1.4 billion is needed for the restoration of health facilities which are destroyed during the two years long war in Tigray, Afar and Amhara regional state as well as other conflict affected areas across the country. Dr Lia Tadesse told state broadcaster on 21 November that health facilities were rendered vulnerable to destruction throughout the war in Tigray, Amhara, and Afar regional states. Furthermore, health facilities were also destroyed in other parts of the country including Oromia and Benishangul Gumuz regions due to conflicts. “We have data limitations [from] the Tigray region; it needs further clarification Dr Lia said, but, according to provisional data including data collected from NGOs, at least US$1.4 billion is needed to restore health facilities damaged due to conflicts across Ethiopia.” Data from the ministry shows that a total of 3,666 health institutions and facilities have been destroyed in conflict-affected areas of the Amhara, Afar, Oromia, and Benishangul-Gumuz regions. At least 40 hospitals, 452 health stations, and 1,728 health posts in Amhara; two hospitals, 24 health centers, and 52 health posts in Afar; six hospitals, 21 health centers, and 978 health posts in Oromia, as well as 15 health centers and 348 health posts in Benishangul-Gumuz had been affected by conflicts. A UN report released in May this year revealed that through Western Oromia alone, 426 health facilities were non-functional due to looting and destruction due to violence. So far 35 out of 40 hospitals damaged in the Amhara region, and one of the two hospitals in the Afar region were maintained and started providing services, Dr Liya said, adding that the permanent cessation of hostilities signed in South Africa between the Federal Government of Ethiopia and Tigrayan authorities will enable further restoration of health facilities. A March 2021 report by Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), out of the 106 health facilities visited by MSF team in Tigray region from mid-December 2020 to early March 2021, nearly 70 percent had been looted and more than 30 percent had been damaged. While some looting may have been opportunistic, health facilities in most areas appear to have been deliberately vandalized to render them nonfunctional. In many health centers, such as in Debre Abay and May Kuhli in northwestern Tigray, teams found destroyed equipment, smashed doors and windows, and medicine and patient files scattered across floors, the report said. Six @ICRC trucks arrived in #Mekelle last night with food and additional medical supplies as humanitarian needs remain immense.Last week, @ICRCEthiopia and @EthioRedCross teams in Tigray distributed urgently needed medical supplies to 9 health facilities in and around the city pic.twitter.com/eeDHMr4X9n— ICRC Ethiopia (@ICRCEthiopia) November 21, 2022 Since last week, humanitarian supplies, including medicine, started to trickle to the Tigray region as a result of the peace agreement, which stipulates the provision of unhindered humanitarian supplies. According to the Minister, the Ministry of Health is sending medications to Tigray in cooperation with humanitarian organizations. Last month, doctors in Tigray warned that Ayider referral hospital, the regions largest hospital located in the capital Mekelle was “doomed to collapse soon” due to lack of medical supplies. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Health, Ethiopia Crisis, News, Humanitarian Crisis in Tigray, Ministry of Health, Africa]

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[l] at 11/22/22 1:19am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email In 10 conflict affected regions, just over 8,500 schools have either been partially damaged or destroyed. In Northern Ethiopia alone, over 1,500 schools are non-functional. Addis Abeba The European Union (EU), through its partnership with UNICEF and the United Nations World Food Program (WFP), has granted €33 million (1.8 billion Ethiopian Birr) to restore essential education services and implement school feeding programs so children living in conflict-affected areas in Ethiopia can get back to learning. Roland Kobia, Ambassador of the European Union to Ethiopia said: “Children are the innocent victims in any war and often suffer the most. Their lives are disrupted, and their education is interrupted. Overall, nearly two million children are out of school due to conflict across the country. As we begin to build the pathway to peace, the EU is committed to getting children back into the classroom, where they belong. This funding will strengthen the education system in an integrated manner through the provision of education, health, protection, school feeding, WASH and the reconstruction and rehabilitation of schools. Children’s safe access to quality education is critical to the future of the country.” In 10 conflict affected regions, just over 8,500 schools have either been partially damaged or destroyed. In Northern Ethiopia alone, over 1,500 schools are non-functional. The education component implemented by UNICEF, will include the rehabilitation of schools, reduce rates of school dropouts and also scale-up the ‘My Home-Bete’ approach. “We are deeply grateful for this generous contribution from the EU,” said Gianfranco Rotigliano, UNICEF Representative in Ethiopia. “The ‘My Home-Bete’ program combines accelerated learning, child protection and life skills training in schools. If we are to prevent a lost generation, we need to act now and get children, especially girls, not only back in school but provide services to help them recover from the trauma they have endured due to conflict and also teach life skills so they can become our future doctors, teachers and leaders.” The funding will also support WFP to provide nutritious school meals to 50,000 children across conflict-affected Northern Ethiopia. WFP’s school meals will ensure that conflict-affected school-age girls and boys (including IDPs) continue to receive access to food, and this will attract children to enroll in school and continue their education. Evidence demonstrates that school meals contribute to the protection of children from child labor, particularly for boys, and child marriages, particularly for girls. “I welcome the EU’s timely contribution to WFP’s school meals to keep children, especially girls, in school, who have been affected by the conflict in Northern Ethiopia,” said Claude Jibidar, WFP Ethiopia Country Director and Representative. “By providing nutritious school meals we can address both immediate hunger and nutritional needs of children as well as laying the foundations for developing human capital, with benefits for children, communities and Ethiopia. Our strong, combined approach together with the EU and UNICEF is essential to support children and their families to get back on their feet and rebuild their livelihoods.” Overall, this support will benefit nearly 80,000 children and 60 schools will be reconstructed or rehabilitated. Meanwhile the EU’s support to WFP will enable them to provide nutritious school meals to 50,000 children in schools across conflict-affected Northern Ethiopia. Dispatch

[Category: Ethiopia, News, Education, Armed Conflict in Tigray, Humanitarian Crisis in Tigray, Armed conflict in Amhara and Afar state, Africa]

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[l] at 11/21/22 7:28am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Lieutenant General Tsadkan Gebretensae and Getachew Reda speaking to journalists. Photo: Screenshot Addis Abeba: In their first interview to local media which was aired on regional DW TV, Lieutenant General Tsadkan Gebretensae, and Getachew Reda, the Tigrayan officials who led the team from region during the peace talks with the federal government held in Pretoria and Nairobi, said that the peace agreement was mainly aimed at rescuing the people of Tigray from atrocities, hunger, sexual violence, and displacements. The two officials also accused Eritrean forces of continuing to commit atrocities on civilians in the areas they are present. The two officials echoed an earlier statement released by the regional authorities accusing Eritrean forces of continuing to commit atrocities against Tigrayan civilians. The statement from the regional state issued on 19 November further accused Eritrean forces that in addition to committing crimes against humanity, they were engaged in looting properties belonging to individual and religious institution. Footage aired on the regional media, Tigray TV, also showed dead bodies scattered on the ground which it said were some of 63 civilian victims, including ten children, killed by Eritrean forces in Egela, Central Tigray, last week. regional officials continue reporting atrocities committed by Eritrean forces since the cessation of hostilities were agreed in Pretoria. “Our intention with peace agreement is to save our people from death due to hunger, and lack of medications, atrocities, displacements, and other abuses,” a member of central command of the Tigrayan forces Lt. Gen.Tsadkan said. After realizing the scale of hunger and the mounting death of civilians during the war, the Tigray government discussed with the commanders of its forces and reach on agreements to declare permanent cession hostility to rescue the people of Tigray he added. “We think that we have reduced civilian suffering and destruction of property by reaching on agreement with the Ethiopian government,” Gen Tsadkan said. Getachew Reda, central committee member of the Tigray People Liberation Front (TPLF) on his part said that ensuring the safety of the people of Tigray people was a priority in the peace agreement. According to him the agreement has been reached to resolve political issues that dragged both sides into the two year war in accordance with the constitution. With regard to the issues of disarmament, Getachew said that it will not take place until the safety of the people of Tigray was secured. “Peace is our only choice” he said, stressing the need for both parties to translate the agreement into practical terms. Getachew also said that after the Pretoria permanent cessation of hostilities agreement, there is almost no militarized hostilities going on between the federal and Tigrayan forces, despite Eritrean forces involvement in committing atrocities. Last week US government said it is committed to additional sanctions on Eritrea if they [Eritrean leaders] fail to pull out their troops from Ethiopia. Since the onset of the war in November 2020, Eritrean forces have been accused of acts of atrocities they committed against Tigrayan civilians, which has long been documented by human rights organizations, including the state backed Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC), highlighting “grave human rights violations and an attack against civilians in Axum City, Tigray region. Lt. Gen. Tsadkan said in the interview that ensuring the withdrawal of Eritrean forces was the responsibility of the federal government. “The Ethiopian government has the full responsibility to withdraw the Eritrean force because we signed the agreement with the Ethiopian government, not with the Eritrean forces”, he said. “This permanent secession of hostilities shouldn’t be taken as a break to start a fourth round of war. It should be the end of the war forever,” he said. During his parliamentary appearance last week, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed assured law makers that that the government would respect and was fully committed to implement the peace agreement it signed with the TPLF. “In winding up the conflict peacefully there will not be any loss but profit”, he said, adding that “we will keep our words and implement the accord honestly”. Following the peace agreement humanitarian aid has started trickling into the Tigray region, with the first UNHCR convoy since August arriving in Mekelle today carrying life-saving aid including medicines & shelter kits to treat the sick & repair destroyed homes. Lt. Gen. Tsadkan commended the opening up of humanitarian access and said that it would enhance the trust between the two parties and encourage further implementation of the agreement. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Horn of Africa, Tigray regional state, Armed Conflict in Tigray, Humanitarian Crisis in Tigray, African Union, Politics, Africa]

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[l] at 11/21/22 4:17am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Ashadli Hassen visiting a local gold mining site Addis Abeba Benshangul Gumuz Regional State has issued a directive to all gold mining companies, Small Enterprises and associations to sell their gold products only to National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE). Ashadli Hassen, the president of the region, has emphasized that any company or enterprise operating within the regional state must sell all of their gold products to the NBE. According to the regional government communications office, the president has visited last week one of the gold mining sites operated by small enterprises in the Assosa zone, Dabus woreda. The new directive is said to help control illegal gold trafficking and contribute in stabilizing the country’s economy. The entities who have been trafficking gold illicitly not only have the intention of preventing the entrance of gold to NBE, they rather want to create economic instability in the country, the president said. He vowed that the action being taken against producers who hide gold and those who traffic the product illegally will continue. The gold produced by various companies and small-scale enterprises in the Benishangul Gumuz region is not been fully deposited into the NBE according to him. The state government will provide the necessary support to companies and special small organizations that supply all the gold they produce to the NBE. This comes months after a premium for gold suppliers to the NBE was raised to 35% from 29%, which was intended to benefit producers, the artisanal producers and eliminate illicit gold exports, following a “direction” was put forward by Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Horn of Africa, News, Africa, Talk Business]

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[l] at 11/21/22 3:02am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Dr. Kenea Yadeta. Photo: City communication bureau Addis Abeba: Addis Abeba city administrations land development and administration bureau announced that it has terminated the contract for 90 hectares of land that it said has been fenced off and sitting idle for a long period of time. Addis Abeba City Communication bureau quoted the head of the office, Dr. Kenea Yadeta, as saying that the leases of the land contracted to institutions and individuals in the city were terminated as the they were fenced off and sitting without services for long time. The bureau has also started taking measures on those responsible. Among those whose contracts have been terminated include lease contracts issued since 2005 but have not been developed so far. Furthermore, some 1,200 projects that have not yet been completed according to contracts have been issued with warning to complete them on or before 07 July 2023. Dr. Kenea, who was the former head of peace and security bureau of the city and recently moved to lead the land development management bureau, also said that theft and land garbing, the failure to modernize the sector and issues related to the justice system have been identified as areas that seek solutions and a direction has been put in place accordingly. According to him, so far only 25 percent of Addis Abebas land has been registered in the cadastre. During his last appearance before parliament, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed hinted at plans by the government to privatize urban land in what he said was an attempt to curb rampant practices of land grabbing by “brokers and corrupt government officials. Similarly, last week, Yilkal Kefale (PhD), President of Amhara Regional State, is reported to have sent a letter to zonal, regio-politan, and city administrations in the Amhara regional state barring the allocation of land in and around cities including the capital Bahir Dar on accounts of increasing practices of illegal land grabbing. AS

[Category: Ethiopia, Addis Abeba, News, Addis Abeba City Administration, Africa, Talk Business]

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[l] at 11/19/22 2:29am
0 Facebook 1 Twitter 0 Telegram 0 Email Pictures from yesterdays protest in Wolkite city. Photos: Social Media Addis Abeba Residents in Wolkite city, the capital city of the Gurage zone in the Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s (SNNP) regional state, have staged yest another protests by boycotting routine activities in the city and its environs which included suspending civil service works and business activities. Similar protests of boycott was held by residents of Wolkite on 09 August, shortly after the submission on 04 August by the SNNP regional state Council to the House of Federation (HoF) a cluster of ten zones and six woredas in the SNNP region to be restructured in two additional regional states out of the existing SNNP region. It followed after the respective Councils of zones and Special Woredas approved the request over the weekend of 31 July. However, the Gurage Zone Council had from the get go opposed to the restructuring as it was seeking its regional state status, which it tabled as far back as November 2018. According to various reports on local media, yesterdays protest of boycott is a continuation of the zones rejection the federal government cluster restructuring arrangement which would see a new regional state emerging out of the SNNP region. Residents of the city told DW Amharic over the phone that yesterdays strike was peaceful, except for a minor scuffle between security forces and some youth who were burning tires in some parts of the city. Residents said that all government and commercial organizations in the city were closed with the exception of the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia. Gurage zones continued rejection of the new restructuring has seen Zonal and bureau officials who favor the zones position detained in the last few months. In late August, Addis Standard reported the detention of the Zonal Finance Bureau official Minewer Hayatu, Governmental Communications Affairs official, Mebrate Woldemariam, Abebe Amerga, Zonal Enterprise and Industry Development Bureau official,  and Ajemel, Vice-Dean of Welkite Polytechnic College. AS 

[Category: Ethiopia, Horn of Africa, News, SNNPR, self determination, Security, Africa]

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