Europe External Programme with Africa is a Belgium-based Centre of Expertise with in-depth knowledge, publications, and networks, specialised in issues of peace building, refugee protection and resilience in the Horn of Africa. EEPA has published extensively on issues related to movement and/or human trafficking of refugees in the Horn of Africa and on the Central Mediterranean Route. It cooperates with a wide network of Universities, research organisations, civil society and experts from Ethiopia, Eritrea, Kenya, Djibouti, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, Uganda and across Africa. Key in-depth publications can be accessed on the website. Key information (in addition to what is already widely published)
Military situation (as confirmed per 13 Dec)
- Bombardment of civilians and areas of TDF suspected bases were reported using drones and fighter jets around Central fronts of Tigray.
- Reports of three convoys of military trucks carrying soldiers and three trucks which were heading to supply fuel to Ethiopian National Defence Forces (ENDF) have been destroyed by Tigray Defence Forces around Mayichaw, the capital of Southern Zone of Tigray.
- Alerts on frequent bombing of Tembien (Tigray) with increasing number of confirmations, speaking of indiscriminate attacks, taking place “nonstop all day today involving a huge number of fighter jets and artillery firepower”
- Massacre reported in Tembien, a small town of Guya, around 30km west of Abyiadi town where more than 20 civilians are slaughtered by the military according to reports.
- Soldiers brought by helicopter to Tembien are terrorising civilians to give up the location of the elected President of the Tigray regional government, reported.
International dimension (as confirmed per 13 Dec)
- The U.S. State Department warns any Eritrean forces in Ethiopia to withdraw, after finding reports of their presence there to be ‘credible’.
- Mark Lowcock, the U.N. under-secretary-general for humanitarian affairs states that the United Nations and other humanitarian agencies need immediate and unfettered access to scale up urgently needed assistance and protection for vulnerable civilians, and to get safe passage to humanitarian workers and supplies to the affected region, in line with the globally agreed principles of humanity, neutrality, impartiality and operational independence.
- UNHCR Envoy Vincent Cochetel states that “killing aid workers is a war crime with no statutory limitations.” after the killing of four aid workers in a refugee camp in Tigray.
- Confirmed that two injured teenage Eritrean refugee boys, who were abducted by Eritrean troops from the Hitsats refugee camp in Tigray – where refugees were under international protection, and taken back to Eritrea died two days ago at a clinic in Glass – Anseba (Eritrea).
- The young woman and athlete, Letesenbet Gidey, originally from Tigray, world record holder of 5,000 meters was supposed to participate in the half marathon that took place in Valencia, Spain, last Sunday. Gidey never reached her destination.
- Damage from the war (as confirmed per 13 Dec)
- report of serious impact on woods and forests around the refugee camps in Sudan where 50.000 new refugees have arrived who use firewood for cooking.
- Pictures of serious damage appear from Aksum.
Situation refugees (as confirmed per 13 Dec)
- ICRC reports that a convoy has reached Mekelle, Ethiopia, “carrying medicines and relief items that will be donated to healthcare facilities in urgent need of supplies” to treat the more than 400 injured and other patients hospitalized at Ayder, the main hospital.
- The International Rescue Committee states it is still trying to confirm details around the killing of a colleague in the Hitsats refugee camp in Shire town, the base of aid operations.
- An envoy of buses carrying over 400 Eritreans who had fled from refugee camps and other places in Tigray to Addis Ababa are deported back to Tigray. However, water, food and other goods are missing in the camps which have been the location of heavy fighting.
Ethnic profiling in Ethiopia (as confirmed per 13 Dec)
- Ethnic profiling of Tigrians in Addis Ababa traffic police management, Addis Ababa police as well as federal police was reported, including arrest of those suspected and others were told they will be forcibly sent to military training (Estimated to be 200).
- Ethinic profiling, harassment and arrest of family members of former and current TPLF leaders reported in Addis Ababa, incl family of Ambassador Seyoum Mesfin and Sekoture Getachaw.
- Ethinc profiling of Tigrians living in low cost government owned houses in Addis Ababa.
- NYT reports that ethnic Tigrayans in Ethiopia are “treated like criminal suspects and subjected to various forms of discrimination, harassment and abuse by government officials.” Reports include “being detained without charges, put under house arrest, and barred from traveling outside the country. Tigrayans say they have had their businesses shut down, homes ransacked and money extorted by security officials.”
- Ethiopian Human Rights Commissioner, Daniel Bekele states that human rights issues have been worsening across Ethiopia, because of hatred and dispute among political actors.
Reported situation in Tigray (as confirmed per 13 Dec)
- Reported from within Tigray: serious problem of lack of water.
- Serious looting still ongoing from shops in Mekelle, perpetrated by Amharic militia and Eritreans as well as poverty stricken people benefiting from the lawless situation.
Disclaimer: All information in this situation report is presented as a fluid update report, as to the best knowledge and understanding of the authors at the moment of publication. EEPA does not claim that the information is correct but verifies to the best of ability within the circumstances. Publication is weighed on the basis of interest to understand potential impacts of events (or perceptions of these) on the situation. Check all information against updates and other media. EEPA does not take responsibility for the use of the information or impact thereof. All information reported originates from third parties and the content of all reported and linked information remains the sole responsibility of these third parties. Report to email@example.com any additional information and corrections.
Links of interest
To African Union
On 11th December 2020 The US State Department has acknowledged what has been an open knowledge for weeks, the Eritrean military involvement in the Abiy regime’s campaign of ethnic cleansing in Trgray. This invasion is a clear contravention against the founding principles of the African Union. Efforts by President Ramaphosa for de-escalation and negotiated settlement of the conflict has gone on deaf ears. No doubt this genocidal war is part of an un-African plan for the Horn region concocted by Isayas and Abiy with the blessing of emerging Middle Eastern powers and with full knowledge of some other supporters. The regional state of Tigray is under siege and the Eritrean invasion is being conducted in full knowledge of and coordination with the Abiy’s regime of Ethiopia. To await for any formal representation cannot but be an abrogation of duty to protect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of a member nation and the safety and Human Rights of fellow Africans. Hence, in the spirit of the principle of ‘African problems by Africans’, I urge the AU to hold an emergency meeting and:
1) Immediately suspend Eritrea from AU membership
2) Demand with the strongest terms that Eritrea immediately suspends its military adventures in Tigray
3) Demand for the unconditionally withdrawal of all Eritrean forces from all parts of Tigray and elsewhere in Ethiopia
4) Stop Eritrean miltary’s brutal campaign of killing Tigrayans and destroying and or looting the economic, transport and social infrastructure of Tigray
5) Demand that the Abiy regime and Eritrea unconditionally provide for an independent AU-led investigation of the atrocities and destruction committed in Tigray.
Thanks for the uptodate information that is unfortunately not reported on mainstream media due to information blackout and international journalist not being allowed into Tigray. The world needs to know of the attrocities that are being committed against the elected gov’t of Tigray and ordinary civilians.
Thank you Sir., for you are being a voice of voiceleses of millions. May God bless your entirelife! Long live with full health and prosperity to Martin Plaut!❤❤❤