Situation in Tigray (per 24 June)

  • The federal government of Ethiopia has accused the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) of blocking humanitarian aid flights from landing at Mekelle Alula Aba-Nega International Airport.
  • “The terrorist group [TPLF] has obstructed the flight to Mekelle Airport carrying medical supplies and nutritious food for children availed by the government,” said the Federal Government Communication Service.
  • In response, the Government of Tigray issued a statement saying that the claim by Addis Ababa authorities about the closure of Mekelle international Airport is “false” and the airport ceased its operations temporarily due to “severe shortage of fuel”.
  • The statement noted that the federal government cannot construct a rationale for why the Government of Tigray, fighting for survival of the people, would prevent humanitarian flights critical for the delivery of life-saving assistance.

Situation in Ethiopia (per 24 June)

  • The Ethiopian government has reappointed Ambassador Meles Alem as spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs replacing Ambassador Dina Mufti. Ambassador Meles Alem served as spokesperson of the ministry before being appointed as Ethiopia’s Ambassador to Kenya.
  • The outgoing Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson, Ambassador Dina Mufti says that the recent joint statement by the EU and Egypt with regard to the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) is “biased and senseless” and calls the EU to reconsider its stance.
  • During the recent EU Foreign Affairs council meeting, the EU and Egypt said  “reaching a mutually acceptable and binding agreement on the filling and operations of the GERD” is important.
  • The Ambassador denounced the EU’s stance about “Egypt’s water security” as unacceptable and noted ”for a country that shows a genuine stance on the dam, such a partisan statement is unacceptable.”
  • Dina Mufti has been appointed Director Public Diplomacy in the Foreign Office of Ethiopia.
  • Deutsche Welle (DW) reports that thousands of Ethiopian migrants recently deported from Saudi Arabia say that they have been detained for months and suffered from miserable conditions while in detention centres.
  • Abdela Mohammed is one of the recently repatriated migrants and he has spent 13 “unbearable” months with other detainees in overcrowded Saudi Arabian detention centres.
  • He said that detainees were sleeping on the bare floor and barely fed enough to survive. “There wasn’t enough food,” said Abdela. “We only ate breakfast and the rice we were given wasn’t even enough for a single mouthful.”
  • He also said that the Ethiopian Embassy in Saudi Arabia “ignored” them while they tried to call from the prison. “One day an embassy employee, who witnessed us being beaten up by the police [in detention], said to us: ‘Let them beat you’, ” he added.
  • It is reported that FANO has effectively split.
  • The  unconfirmed report states that the main faction from the Gojam area and the ‘Menelik Brigade’ are hunted by ENDF and Amhara SF.
  • The unconfirmed report reads that A number of FANO brigades from east and southern Amhara and Bahir Dar area seem to be now under ENDF command.
  • It is stated (unconfirmed) that military observers have said that the brigades are being trained and armed so as to be used by ENDF as ‘irregular fighters’.

International Situation (per 24 June)

  • The US Senate Committee on Foreign Relations says it has unanimously passed a bipartisan resolution condemning the weaponization of hunger and starvation.
  • “Conflict is a major driver of food insecurity, and warring factions in Ethiopia, South Sudan, Syria, and Yemen continue to engage in the willful destruction of agricultural goods and infrastructure, manipulate markets, and impose security and bureaucratic barriers upon humanitarians – culminating in the deliberate starvation of civilians,” said U.S. Senator Jim Risch.
  • Senator Bob Menendez said “from Ethiopia to Ukraine, the ongoing disruption of supply chains, obstruction to or halting of food production, and shutting down of key ports and other transport hubs are actively pushing millions of people towards famine by limiting their access to basic goods.”
  • U.S. Senators Jeff Merkley also said that “from Ukraine to Syria to Ethiopia, we are watching with horror as bad actors destroy agriculture, deny humanitarian access, and disrupt markets for crucial commodities in a twisted effort to achieve their geopolitical aims through starvation,” adding the resolution calls on the U.S to ensure that civilians are protected during war.

Links of interest

Federal government says TPLF prevented aid flights from landing at Mekelle Airport

Twitter: Statement on the Addis Authorities’ false claims regarding the closure of Mekelle Airport

Ambassador Meles Alem Reappointed as Spokesperson of Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Walta TV

EU should reconsider biased stance on Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam: MoFA

Joint press statement – 9th Association Council meeting between Egypt and the European Union

Deported Ethiopian migrants tell of suffering in Saudi Arabia detention: DW

Senate Foreign Relations Committee Passes bill condemning starvation as a weapon of war

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 any additional information and corrections.