- The Popular Front for the Liberation of the Tiger states that it supports the right and duty to voluntarily mobilize for self-defense.
- It says it is not a lattice army, and so in some battles it has recorded victories against Ethiopia and its allies.
- Tigre’s Office of Foreign Affairs says the war can be ended by political decision.
The Tiger Transitional Government says it has taken up arms as a last resort to protect the province from the start of a civil war that unfolded during Meher’s crop production season.
Meher’s crop production in Ethiopia combines high yields, “long-cycle” crops that make up the main diet.
The civil war combined with climate change has disrupted food security, leaving the United Nations estimating more than 5.2 million people in need of food aid.
So those who took up arms did so voluntarily because their livelihoods were violated.
“Tiger’s steadfast property in the fight against the unjust and genocidal war against their survival and human dignity must make it clear that we continue to stand up for the right and duty to voluntarily mobilize our forces for self-defense,” Tiger said. This was reported by the Foreign Ministry.
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On Monday, Reuters reported that the Popular Liberation Front of Tiger (TPLF) used a policy of forced recruitment based on interviews with aid workers captured by Tiger fighters and residents between February and May this year.
The TPLF responded by saying that the allegations were not accurate.
In a subsequent statement issued Wednesday, Tigrian’s transitional government said: “Our people understand this [recruitment] and were the main owners of both mobilization and struggle. “
Fighters of the Tiger People’s Liberation Front react to people from a truck when they arrive in Mekel, the capital of the Tigris region, Ethiopia.
The Tiger Foreign Affairs Division added that if they had been “cut off” by the forces, they would not have been able to fight back and win several battles against the allied armies of the Ethiopian government, the Eritrean and Amharic forces.
The government also said that while there may be “lower-level violations” in the recruitment process, it does not reflect the true nature of their military.
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The Foreign Office said that since last December, when the transitional government withdrew its troops from neighboring provinces, it has “increased the clarity of the purpose of our armed forces”.
Peace or war?
AFP reported on Monday that about 40 Ethiopian peacekeepers of Tiger descent had arrived Sunday in eastern Sudan to seek asylum.
They feared persecution at home after some of their colleagues were arrested by the authorities after returning to Ethiopia.
While a “mini-truce” has been in place for more than a month to allow food aid to the Tigris region, humanitarian agencies have mourned the blockade, while the Tigrian government has said insufficient aid is reaching people and normal life is still stopped.
The World Food Program estimates that Tigers received less than 5% of the necessary aid.
A small group of Tigray protesters gathered near the United Nations in New York.
“All supply lines to Tiger remain sealed, all banking activities are frozen, and power lines and telecommunications have been shut down,” the Foreign Ministry said.
It adds that the Ethiopian authorities have come up with a strategy of slow, painful motive, called “arms starvation.”
Armed hunger makes “voluntary, institutionalized and formal mobilization mandatory” and is “a natural right to defend oneself in order to survive as a people and a civilization,” the office said.
The office said that despite their defensive regime, they believe the war can be ended through a political solution to ensure a lasting end to the conflict.
The News24 Africa Desk is supported by the Hans Seidel Foundation. The stories prepared by the African Bureau, as well as the opinions and statements that may be contained in this article, do not reflect the stories of the Hans Seidel Foundation.