AUC Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat

African Union Wants Ceasefire in Tigray Conflict

ADDIS ABEBA – The African Union has called for a ceasefire in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, where federal troops are engaged in an offensive against the local government that they accuse of attacking a military base last week.

“I’m following with concern the escalation of military confrontation in Ethiopia,” said Moussa Faki Mohamat, Chairperson of Africa Union Commission.

“And I wish to reaffirm the AU’s firm attachment to the constitutional order, territorial integrity, unity and national sovereignty of the Ethiopia to ensure stability in the country and the region,” Mohamat continued.

“I wish to reiterate the continued readiness of the African Union to support inter-Ethiopian effort in the pursuit of peace and stability,” he said, “I urge the parties to engage in dialogue to seek peaceful solutions in the interest of Ethiopia”.

The latest statement came after the Tigray authorities called on the regional bloc to intervene and start a dialogue. The federal government, however, said that attempts to talk had failed over the past two years.

“Ethiopia is grateful for friends expressing their concern,” Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said on Monday.

“Our rule of law operation is aimed at guaranteeing peace and stability once and for all by bringing perpetrators of instability to justice”.

He also said concerns that Ethiopia will descend into chaos “are unfounded and a result of not understanding our context deeply”.

“Our rule of law enforcement operation, as a sovereign state with the capacity to manage its own internal affairs, will wrap up soon by ending the prevailing impunity,” his added.

Tensions between the federal government and the state authorities boiled over into conflict last week and there has been fighting in several parts of Tigray since last Wednesday, according to the UN.