Federal National Army Responds To Tigray Attack In Ethiopia

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On 11th November 2020, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front attacked the military base of the Federal national army. The surging differences between the ruling party and the federal government triggered the ambush. Mr. Abiy believes that the attackers had dressed in uniforms similar to Eritrean soldiers to disguise themselves. He is certain the opposition party had planned the ambush.

The enmity between the Federal government and Tigray began when Prime Minister Abiy disbanded the EPRDF and replaced it with Prosperity Party. For many years, the EPRDF was the backbone of Ethiopian politics. Hence, the ruling party of Tigray was not pleased with the transition.

Impacts

Following the unraveling insecurity in Ethiopia, Human rights Watch had called upon the government to find quick solutions. The Wednesday attack left many injured, some dead, and property damage.  While addressing the media, Prime Minister Abiy said that during the attack, the traitors attempted to steal military assets.

“The national defense force that has been in the bunkers for the past 20-plus years defending its people and the country by paying heavy sacrifices with its blood and flesh. It has been attacked, this evening in Mekelle and many other places, by traitors and the force they organized. The army has been attacked from behind by its citizens and many have been martyred, wounded and properties destroyed,” Mr. Abiy said in a TV address.

The Ethiopian cabinet declared six months state of emergency and cut communication networks, internet, and electricity in Tigray. Meanwhile, the Human Rights Watch demanded the Federal government to restore the communication networks.

Division of Governments

The conflict between the Tigrays and the Federal government has been escalating over the past months. To some extent, Mr. Abiy feels the ruling party has been undermining his authority since he gained power. In a statement, he said:

“My dear people. Today the apostate Ethiopian has stabbed Ethiopia. What makes this attack one of the most shocking attacks is that Tigray People’s Liberation Front TPLF is viewing the Ethiopian National Defense Force as a foreign army rather than an army that has been protecting the people of Tigray for over twenty years.”

As the Prime minister’s patient is running out, many fears the conflict could spread all over Ethiopia. He urged the Ethiopians to maintain unity despite the tensions. In a recent report, the Prime Minister ordered a military offensive after the Tigray forces took over the army base of the federal government.

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Situation In Tigray

According to eyewitnesses, on Wednesday morning, the air in Tigray was filled with the sounds of gunshots. It was no more later in the day. Reports state that Mekelle, which is the capital of Tigray, is under the control of regional forces.

Due to the disruptions, most of the activities in the capital have come to a standstill. The local authorities have imposed restrictions on movement; the Ethiopian carrier airline has halted flights to the region. Banks and the only mobile phone company in Ethiopia are also non-operational. Considering the regional leaders are in charge, it’s unclear how the federal government will implement the state of emergency.

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