The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said that more than 1,300 Sudanese refugees had left Awlala and Kumer refugee camps in Ethiopia’s Amhara region

Mekelle: 10 May 2024 (Tigray Herald)

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) said that more than 1,300 Sudanese refugees had left Awlala and Kumer refugee camps in Ethiopia’s Amhara region, local media reported on Thursday. Some 1,000 Sudanese refugees have left the Awlala camp, while 300-400 others have recently left Kumer, near the border town of Metema in West Gondar zone, the reports said, quoting UNHCR. According to the reports, UNHCR said most of the refugees went to Metema and Gondar city. The reports have also quoted UNHCR as saying that the refugees left the camps due to rampant organised robberies, kidnappings and killings and poor services. On Wednesday, Ethiopia’s Refugees and Returnees Service expressed “concern” over the recent incidents in the camps and pledged to address the “safety concerns” and the problem of the “basic services”.

2) The US Special Envoy to the Horn of Africa, Mike Hammer, is on a visit to Ethiopia, Djibouti and Kenya from May 8-19 to discuss domestic and regional issues, a statement by the US Department of State said. During his stay in Addis Ababa, Hammer will discuss the implementation of the Pretoria Cessation of Hostilities Agreement, and resolving the longstanding issues through dialogue, and avoiding another conflict, with the officials of the Ethiopian government, the Tigray interim administration and the African Union. Hammer will also discuss with Ethiopian officials the importance of resolving conflicts in Amhara and Oromia regions through dialogue and investigating human rights violations, the statement said.

3) Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s Special Envoy and former president Mulatu Teshome discussed with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan a wide range of bilateral, regional, and global issues of common interest in Ankara on Thursday, the Ethiopian embassy in Ankara said. The embassy said the two sides also discussed the ways to strengthen their diplomatic relations and partnership. Ethiopia’s Foreign Minister Taye Atskeselassie also attended the discussion, the embassy indicated, adding that Mulatu delivered Abiy’s letter to President Erdoğan. The Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs also said Taye discussed bilateral issues with his Turkish counterpart on Wednesday. The high-level discussion came days after Turkey deployed its naval ship to protect Somalia’s international waters. Ethiopia is at loggerheads with Somalia following the signing of a sea access Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the northern autonomous region of Somaliland in January.

4) Ethiopia’s Federal High Court Thursday rejected a bail request by former State Minister of Peace Taye Dendea and ordered his continued stay in the Federal Kaliti Prison in Addis Ababa. Taye has been detained in the Federal Police Crime Investigation Division in the capital since November 2023. Federal prosecutors charged him with collaboration with extremist armed groups, instigation of violence and possession of an illegal firearm, which the police said was found in his home in Addis Ababa. Taye was arrested in November 2023 on suspicion of a conspiracy to overthrow the government of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. The member of the ruling Prosperity Party and an elected MP in the Oromia regional council, was an ally of Abiy until he called the PM a “blood thirsty barbarian”, in a social media rant. The Oromia regional council removed Taye’s immunity months after his detention.

5) Safaricom Ethiopia disclosed that security concerns and data restrictions were hindering its operations in the Horn of Africa state, the media reported, quoting the telco’s CEO, Wim Vanhelleputte. During Safaricom’s annual performance report in Nairobi on Thursday, Vanhelleputte said: “Our operations in conflict areas remain subject to restrictions,” adding that the telco’s 500 towers in the conflict-wracked Amhara region, a fifth of its total in Ethiopia, were hit by data restrictions due to the state of emergency since mid-2023. “We hope this will improve soon,” Vanhelleputte was quoted as saying. Meanwhile, Safaricom PLC, the parent firm in Kenya, announced a decline of its annual net revenue by 18.7 percent in the budget year ended March, due to losses from its Ethiopia operations.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button