March 26, 2023

The Political Chronicle

Complete US News World

The UN says Ethiopia has arrested 72 WFP drivers fighting in the north

The United Nations on Wednesday said it was detaining drivers of the Ethiopian 72 World Food Program (WFP) in a city in the north of the country, located on the only road that allows it to provide humanitarian assistance to war-torn and famine-stricken Tigris.

“We are confirming that 72 contract drivers employed by the WFP have been detained in Semara. We are in contact with the Ethiopian government to understand the reasons for their detention,” the UN said. The spokesman said.

Earlier in the day, 22 Ethiopian UN workers were arrested in the capital, Addis Ababa, after a targeted raid on the capital, Addis Ababa.

Many of them were released, but at least nine were taken into custody Wednesday evening, said Stephen Dujarric, a spokesman for the organization in New York.

The arrests followed a state of emergency declared by Abi Ahmed’s government last week as rebel fighters threatened to march towards the capital.

According to prosecutors, thousands of dirhams have been arbitrarily detained since measures were announced allowing authorities to detain anyone suspected of supporting “terrorist groups” without a warrant.

No information is available on the race of drivers detained in Semera, but the UN has not yet commented. In the past it has hired deacons to carry aid to areas where millions of people are suffering from hunger.

According to the UN, only 15% of the required aid was able to reach Degra through Semara.

– “seat” –

The war began on November 4, 2020, when Prime Minister Abi Ahmed sent troops to Dikre to remove regional officials from the Dikre People’s Liberation Front (DPLF), which he accused of attacking military bases.

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The winner of the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize quickly announced victory, but DPLF fighters recaptured much of Tigray in June and then advanced to neighboring Amhara and Afar, where Semara is located.

The TPLF and its Oromo Liberation Army (OLA) allies now claim it is about 300 kilometers north of Addis Ababa.

The war, which has claimed thousands of lives and displaced more than two million people, has been halted by abuses perpetrated by both sides.

On Wednesday, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said in a statement that the government’s “effective siege” on Tigre was preventing women victims of rape from accessing medical care.

Based on the testimonies of victims between the ages of six and 80, HRW accuses militants of deliberately targeting widespread sexual violence and medical facilities.

– “Disgusting Acts” –

Amnesty International on Wednesday released an investigation into the rape, beating and robbery of women in Amfara’s Nifas Mawcha city in August by Tigrian militants.

Agnes Calamart, Amnesty’s secretary general, said that “these heinous acts (…) create war crimes and potential crimes against humanity.”

The TPLF condemned the “serious results” of this investigation, which was conducted in its view according to the “wrong method” by long-distance video interviews. If these facts are proven, “the Tigris government will bring the perpetrators to justice,” the organization said in a statement.

The Ethiopian government, for its part, considered these acts to be “condemned by all”, citing “many inhumane acts committed in the regions controlled by the TPLF.”

Diplomatic efforts, especially those led by the United Nations and the United States, have intensified in recent days in the pursuit of a ceasefire.

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On Monday, the AU’s special envoy, former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, spoke of the “window” to be exploited the day after he visited the capital, Digrai.

Washington said Wednesday it was “optimistic” that the AU’s efforts would succeed.

“Everyone has a chance to go back, sit at the same table, stop walking on the floor and, ultimately, reach a ceasefire,” he said. Anthony Blingen, President of US Diplomacy, announced. , Mr. Who spoke on the phone with Obasanjo and brought “support” to his mediation.

The foreign secretary also spoke with his Ethiopian counterpart, Demek McConaughey, urging him to “take decisive action for peace.”

TPLF spokesman Getachew Reda said on Twitter that “most” peace efforts “were primarily aimed at saving Abijah.

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