Biden administration asks Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to restore telecommunication services in Ethiopia’s Tigray region

The Biden administration on Tuesday evening called on the Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali to restore telecommunication services in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, a day after the government announced a unilateral ceasefire.

“We urge the Ethiopian authorities to immediately restore telecommunication services in Tigray and permit unhindered freedom of movement for and ensure the safety and security of humanitarian organization personnel,” the administration said in a statement. “Our paramount priority is addressing the dire humanitarian situation.  The United States stands ready to work with the Ethiopian government, Tigrayan authorities, the United Nations, and other international partners to expedite the delivery of life-saving food assistance, including to the estimated 900,000 people likely already experiencing famine conditions.” 

The statement by the United States Department of State said the ceasefire could be “a positive step if it results in changes on the ground to end the conflict, stop the atrocities, and allow unhindered humanitarian assistance.”

“We are closely monitoring developments.  We call on all parties to commit to an immediate, indefinite, negotiated ceasefire, so as to end the violence, restore stability to Tigray, and create a context for an inclusive dialogue that preserves the unity, sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Ethiopian state,” the government said. “We urge all parties to adhere strictly to international humanitarian law and commit to unhindered humanitarian access and independent mechanisms for accountability for human rights violations and abuses.  We continue to call for the immediate, verifiable withdrawal of all Eritrean forces from Ethiopian territory, a necessary step for an effective, sustainable ceasefire and in accordance with the Ethiopian government’s March commitment to do so.”

Chief White House Correspondent for

Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

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