File photo of a destroyed tank in Tigray File photo of a destroyed tank in Tigray  (AFP or licensors)

African Union calls for ceasefire in Ethiopia's Tigray region

The head of the African Union has called for an immediate ceasefire in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray state, where aid agencies say around a million people face famine.

By Nathan Morley

The head of the African Union is appealing for an immediate ceasefire in conflict-wracked northern Ethiopia.

Moussa Faki Mahamat said he was following with great concern reports of increased fighting in the Tigray Region, where a two-year-old conflict continues to rage.

He called for an immediate ceasefire and urged the resumption of humanitarian services.

At the same time, U.S. development agency USAID chief Samantha Power joined the call for the joint offensive by Ethiopian federal forces and Eritrean Defence Forces (EDF) to stop.

Years of fighting

Ethiopian government forces have been involved in fighting with Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) rebels since late 2020.

Over the last two years, the conflict has killed thousands of civilians and displaced millions.

AU-led peace talks were expected to take place in South Africa, but no date has been fixed for the meeting after it was postponed, ostensibly due to logistical problems.

The Tigray region has been largely isolated since the war broke out leaving over five million people without electricity, phone, and internet services.

Medicines, baby care products and food often run low.

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17 October 2022, 17:03