Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has vowed to “bury the enemy” in a video broadcast by a state-run television station that allegedly shows the Nobel Peace Prize winner on the battle front in the country’s years-long war against the Tigray forces.
- The video shows Mr Abiy in military uniform claiming the war is being waged with “high degree of success”
- The Prime Minister announced this week that he is going to the front line to steer the fight against rebel forces
- A years-long battle between government troops and Tigray forces has raged in the north of the country since November 2020
Sir. Abiy, in military uniform, claimed the war was “being waged with a high degree of success”, referring to places on the border between the country’s Amhara and Afar regions, as neighbors to Tigray.
He spoke to the television station in the languages Afaan Oromo and Amharic in the recordings broadcast by Fana Broadcasting.
“What you see over there is a mountain that was conquered by the enemy until yesterday. Now we have been able to capture it fully,” Mr Abiy said wearing a hat and sunglasses.
“The morale of the army is very exciting,” he said, promising to conquer the city of Chifra, on the border between Tigray and Afar, “today.”
More than 9 million need help
Tens of thousands of people have been killed in the war that erupted in November 2020 between Ethiopian forces and the Tigray forces, which had long dominated the national government before Abiy took office in 2018.
The government declared a state of emergency this month as Tigray fighters moved closer to the capital, Addis Ababa, and the United States and others have asked their citizens to leave immediately.
Sir. Abiy announced late Monday night that he was going to the front line to steer the fight against rebel forces from the northern region of Tigray and their allies.
U.S. special envoy Jeffrey Feltman said this week that Tigrayan forces had been able to advance south toward the capital, but that the military had repulsed several attempts to cut back the transportation corridor on the eastern front.
The forces have also threatened to try to cut a corridor connecting the inland state of Ethiopia with the region’s largest port.
The spread of the year-old conflict to the nearby Afar and Amhara regions means that 9.4 million people need food aid as a direct result of the ongoing conflict, the UN World Food Program announced on Friday.
More than 80 percent of those in need are behind the battle lines, it added.
“Corridors to Tigray had been closed due to the recent Tigrayan offenses on Afar and Amhara, as well as serious disruptions in federal government approvals. Since mid-July, less than a third of the necessary supplies … have come in. in the region, “the organization said.
Sir. Abiy was awarded the Nobel Prize in 2019 after announcing sweeping political reforms to the oppressive government and restoring relations with neighboring Eritrea after years of conflict.
His government has since allowed Eritrean soldiers to enter the Tigray and fight alongside Ethiopians.
Wires / ABC
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