The Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (Igad) has joined other regional blocs in calling for the cessation of hostilities between warring factions in Ethiopia.
In a statement released Thursday, Igad’s executive secretary Dr Workneh Gebeyuh said the bloc is “following the heightened political situation in Ethiopia with a lot of concern and is calling for an immediate ceasefire”.
He called on the warring parties to exercise restraint, work on deescalating the tensions and resolve the differences through an all-inclusive national dialogue and reconciliation in the best interest of the country.
On Wednesday, African Union chairperson Moussa Faki issued a statement expressing similar sentiments, urging all parties to safeguard the territorial integrity, unity and national sovereignty of the Federal Republic of Ethiopia by engaging in dialogue to seek a peaceful resolution to end the atrocities being witnessed.
Mr Faki further called on the parties to urge their supporters against acts of reprisal against any community, and refrain from hate speech and incitement to violence and divisiveness.
“The chairperson reminds the parties of their international obligations regarding compliance with international humanitarian and human rights law, with particular regard to the protection of civilians and ensuring access to humanitarian assistance by communities,” the statement added.
The AU expressed its commitment to partner with the parties in supporting a consensual political process.
“To this end, the chairperson calls on the parties to engage with the AU High representative for the Horn of Africa, former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo,” the statement added.
On Thursday, Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta appealed to the Ethiopian government and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) fighters to choose dialogue and end the suffering of the people.
“Kenya, Africa and the world want to see peace in Ethiopia. Today must be the day to start the journey towards that peace. We all stand ready to assist the process that the Ethiopians see fit,” he said.