I’ll stop at nothing to end Tigray war, Ethiopia’s Abiy says

Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed

Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed speaks during the 35th Ordinary Session of the AU Summit in Addis Ababa on February 5, 2022. He vowed to do everything he can to end the Tigray conflict.

Photo credit: Tony Karumba | AFP

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on Saturday said his government will do everything possible to peacefully resolve the ongoing conflict in Tigray, the northern part of the country.

PM Abiy made the remarks at the opening of the 35th African Union Head of States Summit in Addis Ababa.

While recalling that the past year has been a difficult time for Ethiopia, the prime minister said "the role played by foreign actors" has made it difficult to resolve the problem.

But the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize winner did not specify the "external actors" whom he accused of having a role in prolonging the civil war in Tigray.

Mr Abiy said as a goodwill gesture, the Ethiopian government had released high profile suspects from the opposition in a bid to create a conducive environment for peaceful dialogue.

He said that his government has launched an inclusive national dialogue platform in a bid to end the ongoing conflict in parts of the country's north.

Lasting peace

He reaffirmed his government's commitment to bringing lasting peace to the country.

In his speech, the Ethiopian prime minister thanked African countries for their support, solidarity and understanding during the difficult situation in his country.

"Without your support, our existence as a nation would have been at great risk" he said.

According to political analysts who spoke to Nation.Africa, the "leave no stone unturned" to achieve peace pronounced by the Ethiopian leader has a strong meaning, especially due to the fact that the conflict in Tigray has spilled over to neighbouring Afar and Amhara regions.

It also hints that the two warring sides — the Ethiopian government and Tigrinyan rebels — might in the near future sit for direct talks to end the bloody conflict which has killed tens of thousands and displace hundreds of thousands.

There have been reports of indirect talks between the Ethiopian government and Tigray Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF) leaders.

PM Abiy further said Africa is not being properly represented at the United Nations and other multilateral international institutions.

He said cooperation is a matter of survival for Africans and it is time for the continent to be properly represented at the UN Security Council.

He said the voice of Africa should be heard at the international arena, adding that it is time to work on reforming the UN system and ensuring that Africa has a permanent seat in the Security Council.

"Today, more than seven decades after the creation of the United Nations, Africa remains a junior partner, without a meaningful input or role within the system of international governance," Abiy said.

"We should collectively insist that Africa's reasonable request for no less than two permanent seats and five non-permanent seats at the UN Security Council be adopted,” he added.