Ethiopia pledges fewer check points for humanitarian works in the north

Ethiopia sees the latest European Union resolution, which intends to impose sanction on Ethiopia in connection with the conflict in the northern part of the country, as unwise. 

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Ethiopia’s FM and Deputy Prime Minister, Demeke Mekonen, poses for a picture with Ambassadors from nine European countries. (Photo credit : MFAE)

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Ethiopian Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, Demeke Mekonned, on Monday had a meeting with Ambassadors of nine European countries based in Addis Ababa. 

From the updates released by the Foreign Ministry, the focus of the situation in the northern part of the country where Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) forces are carrying out war in Amhara and Afar regions. 

Ambassadors of France, Germany, Hungary, The Netherlands,  Italy, Portugal, Romania, Sweden and Slovakia attended the meeting. 

Mr. Demeke reportedly briefed the ambassadors about the current situation in the country as it relates to the war in Northern Ethiopia, according to the update from the Ministry. 

He pledged fewer checkpoints, as part of the commitment for unfettered humanitarian access,  and continues humanitarian flights to the conflict regions. 

Mr. Demeke also expressed “Ethiopia’s disappointment over the silence of the EU in the face of massive belligerence, murder, and destruction of civilians in Afar and Amhara regions by the clique.” 

The fact that TPLF has been obstructing humanitarian operations in the conflict region, among other things, is something that the European Union ignored while hassling the Ethiopian government with accusations of “human rights violations” and blockade of routes to humanitarian assistance. 

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One clear example is, as cited by Demeke Mekonnen, out of 1,111 trucks that entered the Tigray region of Ethiopia with humanitarian aid since July, only 242 trucks returned. 

Mr Demeke called on “EU and member states to extend their Humanitarian Airbridge support to the Amhara and Afar Regions besides supporting the sovereignty and integrity of Ethiopia, which is in the best interest of the European Union.” 

In regards to the intended sanction, Demeke sees it as unwise. It should have been based on investigation of human rights violation and holding groups and individuals rather than imposing it on Ethiopia as a whole.

Furthermore, Mr Demeke said that a stable, united and strong Ethiopia is in the interest of European Union.

The update from the Foreign Ministry did not highlight the views of the ambassadors who participated in the meeting. The British Ambassador to Ethiopia did not attend the meeting. 

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