Published On: Fri, Nov 27th, 2020

Vatican Pope appeals for end to violence in Ethiopia’s Tigray region

Araweelo News Network

Vatican Pope Francis appeals for an end to violence and the restoration of peace in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, as the Prime Minister announces an assault on the regional capital.

By. Vatican

In a statement released by the Holy See Press Office on Friday evening, Pope Francis voiced his concern for the situation in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, as well as surrounding areas.

Matteo Bruni, Press Office Director, said the Pope is following news of the conflict closely.

“Because of the violence, hundreds of civilians have died and tens of thousands of people are forced to flee their homes to Sudan,” the statement read. “During the Angelus on 8 November, Pope Francis, referring to the ongoing conflict in Ethiopia, said: ‘While I urge that the temptation of an armed conflict be rejected, I invite everyone to prayer and to fraternal respect, to dialogue and to a peaceful resolution to the disagreements.’”

In the statement, the Pope also lamented the worsening humanitarian situation.

“The Holy Father, in calling for prayer for this country, appeals to the parties to the conflict to stop the violence, to protect all lives, especially those of civilians, and to restore peace to the people.”

AU-led talks

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has received three African ex-leaders working on behalf of the African Union. Joaquim Chissano of Mozambique, Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia, and Kgalema Motlanthe of South Africa all arrived in Ethiopia for talks on Friday.

The AU called for an immediate halt to hostilities on 10 November, but the conflict only spiralled further out of control.

Final offensive

Now, Abiy’s army is currently poised for a final offensive against regional forces in the Tigray region. Three weeks ago, he deployed the national Army on an offensive against local troops in Tigray after accusing them of attacking federal troops.

He said the military would bring an end to the fighting in the region and remove its leadership, which his government regards as illegal.

Standing firm

As it stands, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), which holds control of the northern region, still refuses to surrender its rule.

Abiy’s forces are currently near Mekelle, a city of 500,000 people. The TPLF said its forces would stand firm, as soldiers dug trenches and prepared fortifications.

Humanitarian emergency

Over the last few weeks, thousands have died and more than 30,000 refugees have fled to Sudan. Reports suggest this conflict is already spilling into Eritrea and destabilising the wider Horn of Africa.

On Friday, the UNHCR said nearly 100,000 Eritrean refugees in Tigray could run out of food as early as next week if supplies cannot reach them.

The UN are hoping to raise US$200 million to cover food, shelter and the other urgent needs of refugees, with plans to help 200,000 people over the next six-months.

About the Author

- #Arraale Mohamoud Jama is a freelance and investigative journalist, writer and human rights activist with more than 20 years of experience. He writes about a range of topics related to social issues such as human rights, politics and security. Other topics in which Mr. Arraale is interested include democracy and good governance. Mr. Arraale has written extensively on regional and international events, and has worked with Somaliland newspapers and Human rights organizations. In 2008, he established #Araweelo #News #website# Network, which he currently manages. For further information, please contact: or Send an SMS or MMS to + 252 63 442 5380 + 252 63 442 5380 /

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