NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) – The Ethiopian prime minister says the “last and decisive” military operation will begin in the coming days against the government of the country̵
Prime Minister Abi Ahmed said in a social media post on Tuesday that the three-day deadline given to the leaders and special forces of the Tigray region “expired today”.
Abi, last year’s Nobel Peace Prize winner, continues to reject requests for dialogue and de-escalation in the two-week conflict in the Horn of Africa, which spilled over into neighboring Eritrea and sent more than 25,000 frightened Ethiopian refugees to Sudan.
Alarmed African neighbors, including Uganda and Kenya, are calling for a peace resolution, but the Abiy government considers the Tigray regional government illegal after provocative local elections in September. Tigrei’s regional government has opposed the postponement of next year’s national elections due to the COVID-19 pandemic and considers Abbey’s federal government illegal, saying his term has expired.
The Ethiopian federal government on Tuesday also confirmed new air strikes outside the capital, Tigrei Mekele, calling them “precision-guided and surgical” and denying the Tigrei government’s claim that civilians had been killed.
Communication and transport links with the Tigray region remain almost completely cut off, making it difficult to verify the claims of both countries.