The ethiopia’s Finance Minister Eyob Tekalign, called for an end to the conflict going on in the northern region of Tigray.
In a statement released on Thursday, Mr Eyob said that collective effort must be made to resolve the Tigray conflict tht has been going on close to a year now which has spread to the neighbouring Amhara and nearby regions.
Mr Eyob said “As we work hard to win peace in Ethiopia and move forward on our prosperity path, let there be a collective resolve that there should no longer be war in Ethiopia,” Eyob said, adding that “guns should be silenced for good.”
Mr Eyob has been the first sitting Ethiopian minister to call for peace since the Tigray conflict broke out in November last year.
The Finance minister’s call for peace, at a time when Ethiopia is registering economic distress, largely caused by the ongoing conflict.
The country has also been ravaged by the Covid-19 pandemic.
At last July, Addis Ababa said that it had lost some $2.3 billion in infrastructure damage in Tigray, where the Ethiopian forces were pursuing the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), once the ruling party but now considered a terrorist group.
last two months, Ethiopia has reportedly spent hundreds of millions of dollars to purchase weapons from Iran, Turkey and the UAE.
Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed issued a short and vague statement on his Twitter account, even as TPLF forces continue to push deeper into the Amhara and other regions.
“The National Security Council has undertaken an evaluation of peace and security issues throughout the country and set direction for subsequent tasks to carry out,” Ethiopia prime minister Abiy Ahmed said.
US President Joe Biden signed an executive order authorising sanctions targeting parties involved in the Tigray conflict last Friday
President Biden’s new executive ordered reports on large scale atrocities continue to emerge from the troubled Tigray region.
The statement by Eyob Tekalign was seen as a positive development, although no statement has come from Abiy’s government backing or rejecting the same.
The minister’s call for peace also shows that the Ethiopian government is taking precautionary measures to avoid further sanctions by the US that could impact negatively on Ethiopia’s economy.
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