ADDIS ABEBA – Troops of Ethiopian National Defense Force (ENDF) have taken the town of Edaga Hamus, located nearly 100km from the Mekelle city, a government task-force on Tigray said on Sunday.
“Our defense force took control of Edega Hamus Town located on the road from Adigrat to Mekelle city,” the task-force said in a statement.
The federal army is now heading to capture Mekelle, which the statement claims is the final goal of the ongoing military operation against The Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) forces in Ethiopia’s northern region.
Over the past three days, the federal army has captured a string of towns, including Axum City, Adowa City, and the town of Adigrat.
After the capture of Edaga town, Military spokesman Colonel Dejene Tsegaye said the troops are advancing to surround Mekelle City, currently held by TPLF.
“The next decisive move is to encircle Mekelle,” Colonel Dejene said, urging residents of the city to dissociate themselves and “save yourselves from the junta” as TPLF forces refused to surrender and continue to dig trenches..
The government also said that there is still time for the leadership of TPLF to surrender, according to Redwan Hussein, spokesman for the government’s task-force on Tigray, who said ENDF troops “will take maximum restraint not to cause major risks for civilians”.
Unspecified number of lives have been lost and more than 30,000 refugees fled to neighboring Sudan in the two weeks long fighting between the ENDF troops and TPLF forces.
The federal government launched a military campaign against forces of TPLF on November 4, after their forces carried out deadly attacks on federal military bases in the region.
Featured Image: Members of Amhara region militias as they head to face the TPLF forces in Sanja, Amhara region. [Photo Reuters]