Tigray Ceasefire Needs ‘Two to Tango’, Ethiopia Warns


NAIROBI (Somaliguardian) – The government of Ethiopia’s prime minister Abiy Ahmed urged rebel forces in the war-wrecked Tigray region to adhere to a unilateral ceasefire it declared earlier this week amid concerns raised over potential humanitarian catastrophe if war continues.

It comes after a critical access route in the northern Ethiopian region was “destroyed”, complicating efforts by aid organizations to provide supplies to those in dire need.

Foreign ministry spokesman, Dina Mufti said the federal government had “unilaterally” implemented a cessation of hostilities, more than 7 months after Ethiopian prime minister ordered a “law enforcement” operation to oust Tigray’s former ruling party and troops to move in.

“However, to implement this ceasefire fully, it needs two to tango,” Mufti said at a press conference in Addis Ababa on Thursday.

“The other side has to react to enact (the ceasefire) appropriately.”

The ceasefire declaration came after Tigrayan rebels had retaken regional capital and other key cities and Ethiopia’s government downplayed the territory loss, saying troops had left Mekelle as no longer “center” of conflict.

The international Rescue Committee (IRC) said on Thursday that a bridge on the Tekeze dam in Tigray region had been destroyed, cutting the only safe access allowing emergency humanitarian assistance to the war-hit region.

“We are devastated to hear the Tekeze bridge in #Tigray has been destroyed,” the IRC said on Twitter, referring to a bridge north of the Tigray town of Emba Madre.

“This was one of the main supply routes into Tigray which means aid efforts will be even more severely hampered than before. The IRC continues to call for unfettered humanitarian access to the region.”

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