What’s been going on in Ethiopia for the past year you may ask? Conflict. A civil war stemmed from a socio-political and ethnic misunderstanding that has left thousands devastated. At least 400,000 people are facing famine-like conditions in the north, 80% of vital medicines are not accessible and more than two million people have been thrust from their homes.
In addition, there is proof of illegal killings, torture, and sexual violence perpetrated by both sides. (TPLF) and (EPRDF)
The origin of this discord was The Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), a politically powerful entity that had dominated Ethiopian politics for 27 years as a repressive administration through a one-party dominant system.
The TPLF, in resistance against the Ethiopian Federal government, held their Election on assertions that Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed became an unlawful ruler because the general elections slated for 29 August 2020 were delayed to 2021 due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
After a long build-up of Eritrean and Amhara forces on Tigray’s borders, fighting between Tigray forces and the Ethiopia-Eritrea-Amhara alliance began on 3 November 2020, with attacks on the Northern Command bases and headquarters of the ENDF in the Tigray Region by Tigray security forces.
Counterattacks by the ENDF in Tigray were described as a police action by federal authorities. Federal allied forces captured Mekelle, the capital of the Tigray Region, on 28 November, after which Prime Minister Abiy declared the Tigray operation “over”.
The Tigray government stated in late November that it would continue fighting until the “invaders” are out—the intruders in question are the (EPRDF)(it would seem).
There is a misgiving that the current conflict could accelerate wider unrest in this multi-ethnic nation that could even steer to it breaking up.
If millions of people were to flee a heightened conflict, its neighbours would find it problematic to cope.
Landlocked Ethiopia borders six countries, two of which are already experiencing conflict – South Sudan and Somalia – and one other, Sudan, has just seen a military takeover.
It would seem that Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s desire to unite “ethnic federalism” and “ethnic nationalist” politics, has been his undoing. As it was one of the catalysts of this unending civil war.