Peace negotiations (per 23 December)

  • Assena TV reports that Eritrean President Isaias Afewerki “strongly rejects the Peace Deal between Ethiopian and Tigray Governments” and intends to launch a new war in collaboration with Amhara militias.
  • Tigray TV announced that the AU High-Level Panel for monitoring and verification will be heading to Tigray. They will arrive “before the end of this month”. Mediator Uhuru Kenyatta will accompany them.
  • Responding to questions from media on whether Eritreans will leave Tigray, Uhuru Kenyatta said all foreign forces will have to leave Ethiopia as per the CoH Agreement, added UMD media.
  • According to The East African, senior commanders from the Federal Government of Ethiopia and senior representatives of the Tigray regional government have agreed on the modalities for the evaluation of the implementation of the Cessation of Hostilities (CoH) Agreement.
  • The Terms of Reference (ToR) for the Monitoring, Verification and Compliance Mechanism (MVCM) that was signed between Tigray and Ethiopian negotiators in Nairobi on 22 December 2022 stipulates the modus operandi of the AU monitoring team under the CoH Agreement.
  • According to the ToR, the AU will be responsible for the deployment of the required persons and material for the full implementation of the mandate of the Joint Committee and Team of African Experts (TAE) that will remain in place for 6 months.
  • The MVCM will operate on 3 levels. At a strategic level, the Joint Committee in Addis Ababa will provide “high level political guidance”. On an operational level the TAE  is in charge of defining mission objectives and resource management. On a tactical level, there will be team site leaders in charge of executing TEA missions.
  • The partners participating in the execution of the MVCM mandate shall be funded by the African Development Bank, AfDB.
  • The TAE will conduct field inspections to attest to the cessation of hostilities, oversee the disarmament of TPLF combatants, scrutinise any discursive violation or undermining of the CoH agreement and inspect activities by signing parties that could have adverse effects on its implementation.
  • The TAE will be in charge of fact finding missions in case of perceived violations of the agreement, attest to the resumption of services and aid to the region and that non-signatory party forces exit Tigray.
  • The TEA will be tasked with discussing instances of violation with the parties and ask for corrective action. If this is not sufficient they must refer to the Joint Committee.

Situation in Tigray (per 23 December)

  • Laetitia Bader, Horn of Africa director at Human Rights Watch, states that services and humanitarian aid, critical to the survival of Tigrayans, have yet to be restored and fully allowed in by Ethiopian authorities.
  • She states that “abuses are ongoing”.
  • William Davison, analyst at the International Crisis Group, states that it is not clear what the state of disengagement as part of the CoH Agreement is.
  • Seble Kahsay, head of the regional bureau of civil service of Tigray, said that despite the CoH Agreement, the federal government has not yet allocated a budget to pay the salaries of the over 250.000 regional and federal civil servants in Tigray.

Situation in Ethiopia (per 23  December)

  • Oxfam says it struggles to provide sanitation to 7 refugee camps in Ethiopia hosting 375.000 people. Financing has progressively dwindled and only 50% of needs are now funded.
  • Challenges include establishing sanitation facilities in the camps where disease outbreaks occur rapidly due to unplanned displacement of large groups of people.
  • Fana Broadcasting Corporation (FBC) reported that the Government of  Germany allocated 20 million EUR for humanitarian purposes in Ethiopia.
  • The funds will be channelled through the UN Organisation for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) to address the needs of people affected by man-made and natural disasters in Ethiopia.
  • The Amhara Region Disaster Prevention and Food Security Program Coordinating Commission announced that since the signature of the CoH Agreement, more than 235.000 Internally displaced persons out of the 850.000 have returned home.

Regional Situation (per 23 December)

  • Somalia’s Defense Ministry Spokesman Abdullahi Ali Anod said that on 22 Dec, the army, backed by local clan militia, killed 150 fighters and took over the ‘’strategic’’ town of Runirgod, reports Voice of America.
  • The spokesperson said Runirgod was the last town held by Al-Shabaab in the Middle Shabelle region.

International Situation (per 23 December)

  • Former Tanzanian Chief Justice Mohamed Chande Othman has been appointed  to chair the UN Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia.
  • The US Export Import bank has guaranteed a 281 million USD transaction to Ethiopian Airlines Group to purchase “several” Boeing 737 Max aircrafts.
  • The UN General Assembly has rejected the Ethiopian budget proposal seeking to defund the International Commission of f Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia.

Links of interest

Twitter: Tigrai Television on AU High-level Panel to head to Mekelle

Ethiopia, Tigray officials agree on modalities to evaluate peace deal

Press Conference after meeting of #Tigray and #Ethiopia negotiators in #Nairobi Dec 21-Dec 23,2022

Twitter: Mamaye not enough humanitarian aid is entering into #Tigray

Tigray Civil Service Bureau says the Ethiopian Federal Government  allocated no budget  to Tigray, yet

Water supply for refugee camps a constant challenge in Ethiopia

Germany allocates  20 million Euros to Ethiopia for humanitarian purposes

Tanzania ex-CJ to head Ethiopia human rights investigations

IDPs return home from Amhara

Twitter: አባ አነንያ Eritrean Channel Asena TV Eritrea’s dictator rejects the peace deal

Somali Military Takes Al-Shabab’s Last Stronghold in Middle Shabelle

Export-Import Bank of the United States’ Board of Directors Approves Transactions

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.