Middle East/North Africa

Biden sending envoy to Ethiopia amid Tigray conflict

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President Biden is sending his special envoy for the Horn of Africa to Ethiopia amid ongoing fighting in Tigray.

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan said on Twitter that Biden asked Jeffrey Feltman to travel to the nation “at a critical moment.” He further called on Ethiopia’s government and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) to begin negotiations.

“Months of war have brought immense suffering and division to a great nation, that won’t be healed through more fighting. We call on all parties to urgently come to the negotiating table,” Sullivan said.

The Ethiopian government has been fighting with the TPLF since November in a conflict that sparked concerns of worsening famine and reportedly subjected hundreds of women and girls to violence.

Amnesty International released a report Tuesday finding women and girls in Ethiopia’s northernmost regional state have been subjected to rape, sexual slavery and other forms of torture by Ethiopian forces.

Reuters reported that the Oromo Liberation Army group, which once opposed the TPLF, has joined forces with the group because they now have a common cause in overthrowing the government.

In addition to Ethiopia, Feltman will also travel to Djibouti and the United Arab Emirates, the State Department said Thursday.

He will meet with senior officials in the countries to “discuss opportunities for the United States to promote peace and support the stability and prosperity of the Horn of Africa.”

The three-country trip will take place Aug. 15-24.

Tags Ethiopia Jake Sullivan Joe Biden Tigray conflict
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