Wednesday, March 31, 2021
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Eritrea pledges to withdraw troops from Tigray

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                A dramatic turn in Ethiopia.  Since November, the central power of Addis Ababa has been fighting the regional power of Tigray, in the North.  For several weeks, soldiers from neighboring Eritrea have been accused of having committed serious abuses against civilians.  On Tuesday, Abiy Ahmed had to resolve to recognize the presence of these foreign soldiers.  And this Thursday, the Prime Minister finally went to Eritrea and he has just announced that Asmara has pledged to withdraw his men from Tigray.

                                    <p><span><span><span><span><em>With our regional correspondent in Nairobi</em>, <strong>Sébastien Németh</strong></span></span></span></span>

Abiy Ahmed announced that Eritrea had promised to withdraw its soldiers and that the Ethiopian army would immediately take up position along the border. Nevertheless in his announcement, the Prime Minister again justifies this Eritrean military intervention, explaining that the Tigrayan power had fired rockets as far as Asmara, “ forcing Eritrea to cross the border to prevent further attacks and maintain its security. »

The statement comes after days of increased international pressure on Addis Ababa. Several reports by human rights activists have exposed the abuses committed by Eritrean soldiers. Asmara’s soldiers are said to have killed dozens of civilians, committed rape, looting and destruction of all kinds.

Confidence difficult to restore

Several foreign countries, notably the United States, have demanded the withdrawal of the Eritreans. Washington also denounced ethnic cleansing and dispatched a senatorial mission to Addis Ababa. Even though Ethiopia has for months denied the arrival of these foreign soldiers, Tuesday Abiy Ahmed had finally recognized their presence.

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However, the announcement of the head of government raises questions. The Eritreans have penetrated much further into the interior of Tigray than the official version claims. Many now question Abiy Ahmed’s commitments. In his announcement, he promised to restore trust between Eritreans and Tigrayans. Given the crimes committed, some see it as an impossible promise.


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