Blinken discusses need for accountability for atrocities during Ethiopia visit | CNN Politics


US Secretary of State Anthony Blanken pressed Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed on Wednesday to hold him accountable for atrocities committed by all sides in the years-long conflict in northern Ethiopia.

The secretary of state and the prime minister met for about two and a half hours in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, during Blanken’s first visit to the country as the first US diplomat.

His visit comes months after a settlement was reached between the two main parties in the conflict – the Abiy government and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front. “Agreement on the Permanent Cessation of Hostilities” It was intended to end a bloody conflict that has led to a humanitarian catastrophe and caused a significant rift in relations between the US and Ethiopian governments.

A senior State Department official said before the trip, which also includes a visit to Niger, that the United States was seeking to “reframe our engagement with Ethiopia” after the “earthquake-destroying” conflict. Is.

“To move this relationship forward, we will continue to need action from Ethiopia to help break the cycle of ethno-political violence that has dogged the country for decades, including in this recent conflict.” more intense than,” said Mollie Faye, the head of state for African affairs, on a call with reporters last week.

In their meeting on Wednesday, Blankenship and Abiy discussed “significant progress in the implementation” of the cessation of hostilities agreement, including “improved humanitarian access and restoration of basic services,” according to a US State Department readout. ” included.

The readout said the two “discussed the importance of accountability for atrocities committed by all parties to the conflict” and “the need for a comprehensive and comprehensive transitional justice process.”

CNN reported extensively on the mass killings and acts of sexual violence that took place during the conflict, some of which Bear the scars of genocide. Blanken said in late 2021 that the U.S. would make a decision about whether the crimes in northern Ethiopia constituted genocide “once we get all the analysis to look at the facts and look at the law,” but the public The determination is yet to come. was made

A joint report released in late 2021 by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission found that all parties to the conflict had violated “international human rights, human rights and refugee rights.” have committed violations of the law, some of which may amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.”

The Biden administration enacted some punitive measures in response to the war. In November 2021, he Restrictions imposed Eritrea’s military and its only political party for involvement in the conflict. In early 2022, Ethiopia lost access to a lucrative U.S. trade program called the African Growth and Opportunity Act due to “gross violations of internationally recognized human rights.”

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