The Prime Minister of Ethiopia has stated that he will personally go to the front line to face the insurgents in the civil war, and it has been more than a year now.
His statement was posted on social media on Monday night, when there were reports that the Tigray army was approaching the capital Addis Ababa.
Mr. Abbey used harsh language and words like “sacrifice” to imply that the survival of this country is at stake.
The civil war with the northern rebels led to a humanitarian crisis.
Thousands of people died, millions were forced to leave their homes, and hundreds of thousands faced famine-like conditions in the Tigray area.
“Starting tomorrow, I will mobilize to lead the National Defense Forces on the front lines,” Mr. Abbey said.
“Those who want to be Ethiopian children will be welcomed by history and stand up for your country today. Let us meet on the front lines,” he added.
When the announcement was made, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) forces stated that they were advancing towards Addis Ababa in at least four areas.
The Ethiopian government denies this. According to BBC Africa correspondent Andrew Harding, the tone of the Prime Minister’s speech was both contemptuous and desperate for certain people.
TPLF rejected the statement made by Mr. Abiy and his spokesperson Getachew Reda, saying “Our troops will not relax their efforts to bring [Abiy’s] Strangle our people to the end”.
The root cause of the conflict is the difference between Prime Minister Abbey and TPLF. TPLF has ruled the country for nearly 27 years, not just Tigray.
Mr. Abi came to power in 2018. In the whirlwind of reform, he let go of politics, reconciled with his old enemy Eritrea, and TPLF was marginalized.
Twelve months ago, war broke out in the long-simmering dispute between TPLF and Mr. Abiy, when Tigrayan forces were accused of attacking military bases to steal weapons, and the federal government responded.
More information about the Tigray crisis: