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Tigray: UN chief urges end to fighting

Fighting began in November of 2020 after fighters loyal to the TPLF attacked a base housing federal troops   -  
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Mary Altaffer/Copyright 2022 The AP. All rights reserved. -

Ethiopia

The UN Secretary-General on Monday called for an end to hostilities in the Tigray region of northern Ethiopia where the situation is getting "out of control", calling for the "immediate withdrawal" of Eritrean troops.

"The situation in Ethiopia is getting out of control. Violence and destruction are reaching alarming levels," Antonio Guterres told reporters.

"Hostilities in the Tigray region of Ethiopia must end now -- including the immediate withdrawal and disengagement of Eritrean armed forces from Ethiopia," he added.

"There is no military solution," the UN Secretary-General insisted, underlining the "terrible price paid by civilians" and the "nightmare" experienced by the Ethiopian population.

He highlighted the "random" attacks that kill civilians "every day", the hundreds of thousands of people displaced by the violence, and the "disturbing evidence of sexual violence and other acts of brutality against women, children, and men".

Due to the clashes, humanitarian aid to Tigray has been suspended for seven weeks, he noted, calling on all parties to allow the passage of humanitarian convoys.

He also called for an "urgent" resumption of talks.

The Ethiopian government on Monday reiterated its readiness for peace talks but said it would continue military operations in Tigray, a day after the African Union (AU) called for an "immediate" end to hostilities.

The TPLF rebels were quick to say on Sunday that they were "ready to respect an immediate cessation of hostilities.

According to sources, Tigray is currently caught between a joint offensive by the Ethiopian and Eritrean armies from Eritrea in the north and Ethiopian troops assisted by forces from the neighboring Amhara and Afar regions in the south.

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