In Addis Ababa, Ethiopian Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonnen has conducted talks with the United States Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa Jeffrey Feltman. Demeke Mekonnen has asked the United States to criticize the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) for its “destructive acts.”
“The US government chose silence which was uncharacteristic of the fraternal relationship between the two countries,” a foreign ministry statement quoted Demeke Mekonnen saying.
“Demeke emphasized Ethiopia’s long-standing hope that the US will rightly denounce the invading troops’ harmful activities in a manner consistent with the two nations’ relationship,” according to the statement. “The Foreign Minister spoke in detail about the roots of the TPLF attack on the Ethiopian National Defense Forces (ENDF) Northern Command, including all of the group’s damaging deeds leading up to the present,” the statement expressed.
TPLF soldiers are currently fighting in the neighboring Amhara and Afar provinces after Ethiopia withdrew its forces from Tigray in early July following its unilateral ceasefire proclamation on June 29, which the TPLF flatly rejected. Meanwhile, the special envoy was reported, in the statement, as adding that the US government “fully understands the opinions of the Ethiopian people on the TPLF.” The pillars of US policy towards Ethiopia, according to Feltman, are maintaining, affirming, and sustaining Ethiopia’s sovereignty, peace, and unity.
In the violent war that began in November of last year, over 2 million people were internally displaced. Relations between the United States and Ethiopia appear to have deteriorated after the former called on the Ethiopian government to engage in talks with the TPLF, a group designated as a terrorist organization by Ethiopia’s parliament. The TPLF headed a four-party coalition that dominated Ethiopia for 27 years until it was ousted in 2018.