Eritrea in mass mobilization for Tigray offensive


More than a month after renewed clashes broke out in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region, there are few signs of de-escalation. A new air-strike hit Tigray’s capital of Mekelle on Sept. 23, while the region’s ruling party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), accused Eritrea of launching a full-scale offensive in support of the Ethiopian government. There are reports that Eritrea (which has a historical enmity against the TPLF) is mobilizing army reservists, with notices handed out in Asmara, the capital. The return to combat came after a five-month truce that saw back-channel meetings between Mekelle and Addis Ababa but no formal talks. The risk that fresh fighting poses to civilians was underscored by UN investigators, who submitted their first report on the two-year conflict. The investigators accused Ethiopia’s government of war crimes in Tigray, and of using starvation as a counterinsurgency tool. Tigrayan forces were also accused of serious human rights abuses.

From The New Humanitarian, Sept. 23

Map: Political Geography Now

  1. Ethiopia peace talks open

    Tigray’s ruling party and the Ethiopian federal government have both accepted an African Union invitation to attend peace talks this weekend in South Africa. It will be the first formal meeting between the two parties since conflict erupted in November 2020. (TNH)Ā 

  2. Ethiopia: truce reached in Tigray conflict

    Following talks in South Africa,Ā Ethiopia’s warring parties agreed Nov. 2 to a permanent cessation of hostilities in the two-year conflict.Ā The Ethiopian government and Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) signed a disarmament plan that calls for the restoration of crucial services, including aid supplies.Ā Eritrea’s government, however, was not part of the peace talks, and it is unclear if it will respect the agreement. (BBC News, NPR)

  3. Ethiopia deal victory for federal government

    The EthiopiaĀ ceasefire dealĀ represents a decisive victory for the government, whose forces have been pushing towards the Tigray capital, Mekelle. Under the agreement, Tigrayan rebels must disarm within 30 days and the federal government will take control of the region, ruling through an interim administration. Humanitarian access and the resumption of essential services is agreedā€”ending a blockade imposed by Addis Ababa. (TNH)

  4. First food aid shipments arrive in Tigray

    Humanitarian groups delivered food aid into Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region for the first time since a ceasefire agreement was reached earlier this month. A convoy of 15 trucks travelled through neighboring Amhara region on a route off limits to aid agencies since mid-2021. Millions of Tigrayans have been facing famine conditions due to a government-enforced blockade. (TNH)