AUC Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat

AU, UN Welcome Govt’s Decision to Release Opposition Figures from Prison

ADDIS ABABA – Top officials of the African Union and United Nations welcomed the government of Ethiopia’s decision to release prisoners, including key opposition figures.

The government said the decision to release them on Friday was a part  of its efforts to hold an inclusive national dialogue.

In a statement today, AU Commission chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat, said he was pleased to learn of the release of political opposition figures detained in Ethiopia.

The Chairperson “welcomes this important gesture of appeasement of the political situation in Ethiopia” said Mahamat.

The chairperson expressed his “sincere hopes that it will be the trigger for a political process, paving the way for the implementation of a genuinely inclusive National Dialogue process for the peaceful and consensual solution to the political and institutional problems facing the Federation”.

He has also encouraged “all the actors to engage in it with courage and determination while assuring them, to this end, of the resolute support of the African Union”.

On Friday, the UN Secretary-General Guterres also welcomed the release from prisoners.

“I call upon the parties to build on this significant confidence-building step by agreeing (on) a cessation of hostilities and a lasting cease-fire, as well as launching a credible and inclusive national dialogue and reconciliation process,” he said.

He promised to remain actively engaged with all stakeholders in assisting Ethiopia to bring an end to the fighting and to restore peace and stability.