Antoni Guterres, UN Secretary-General, today released a statement saying that a real opportunity is available to resolve Ethiopia’s Tigray conflict. The Ethiopian conflict started more than a year ago. Despite several mediation efforts, the armed hostilities are still in progress.
Antonio Guterres issued this statement after holding a telephone conversation with Olusegun Obasanjo. Obasano was appointed as a mediator to resolve the Ethiopian conflict by African Union (AU).
Obasanjo has held detailed talks with almost all stakeholders to the conflict. He has visited the Tigray, Oromia, Afar, Amhara regions of Ethiopia. He has met with Ethiopian Federal Government and Regional Government officials.
Obasanjo, a few hours ago, briefed the UN Secretary-General about his mediation efforts. After Obasano-Guterres phone call, the statement came from the UN Secretary-General’s office.
It seems that warring factions in Ethiopia have shown a willingness to make some concessions for a peaceful and diplomatic solution. Ethiopian government this month released some top former leaders of Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF). Sebhat Nega, Abay Weldu, Mulu Gebregzhiaber, Kiros Hagos, and Abadi Zemu were released from prison on January 7.
Tigray forces (TDF) withdrew from Amhara and Afar regions after suffering military setbacks. But fighting is far from over. Tigray fighters are trying to open the Sudan-Tigray corridor. Intense fighting is being reported to the west of the Tekeze River. Overall TDF is on the back foot.
UN Secretary General’s statement is a dim ray of hope. The deadly Tigray conflict has cost tens of thousands of lives on all sides.