Ethiopian government gives conditions for possible negotiations with Tigray fighters

Ethiopian foreign ministry spokesperson Dina Mufti told reporters that one of the conditions would be for the TPLF to withdraw from the Amhara and Afar regions in the north. Mufti, however, clarified that no decision has been made for possible negotiations to begin.

The Ethiopian government on Thursday gave conditions for possible talks with the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) fighters as the war rages.

Ethiopian foreign ministry spokesperson Dina Mufti told reporters that one of the conditions would be for the TPLF to withdraw from the Amhara and Afar regions in the north. Mufti, however, clarified that no decision has been made for possible negotiations to begin.

“In order for there to be a peaceful solution, they say it takes two to tango,” Dina said, “There are conditions: First, stop your attacks. Secondly, leave the areas you have entered. Third, recognize the legitimacy of this government.”

Mufti added, “By the way, don’t misunderstand, it’s not being said a decision has been made to enter into negotiations.”

TPLF spokesperson Getachew Reda told AFP at the weekend that pulling out from Amhara and Afar before talks start is “an absolute non-starter.” TPLF has also called for the end of the humanitarian blockade on Tigray.

The development in Ethiopia may be an indication that after weeks of diplomatic engagement, the Ethiopian government may finally be ready for talks.

The mediation is being led by former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo who is acting as the African Union Special Representative for the Horn of Africa.

Obasanjo is being supported by U.S. Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa Jeffrey Feltman who has been spending days in Ethiopia, Kenya and elsewhere in an attempt to find a lasting solution to the crisis in Ethiopia.

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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