The American envoy for the Horn of Africa takes stock of his mission in Ethiopia

The American envoy for the Horn of Africa takes stock

A joint offensive by the Ethiopian and Eritrean armies was launched overnight from Monday to Tuesday against the Tigray region in northern Ethiopia. From New York where he is for the UN General Assembly, the American special envoy to the Horn of Africa Mike Hammer has confirmed and condemned this operation, and particularly the involvement of Eritrea. In front of journalists on Tuesday, he also took stock of his recent mission to Ethiopia aimed at bringing the belligerents back to the negotiating table. And despite the escalation on the ground, he still wants to be “positive”.

With our special correspondent in New York, Leonard Vincent

The only obstacle to the resumption of negotiations between the Ethiopian government and the Tigrayan authorities, according to Mike Hammer, lies in a word hammered out several times: “ Trust, trust, trust “, according to him. The belligerents do not believe a word of what the adversary promises, he explained.

Taking stock of his mission on the spot, the American special envoy wants to be, if not optimistic, at least, as he said, “ at work with the African Union for rebuild that trust ” and “ stop the fighting “. He repeated it: there is no military solution to this conflict. If guns talk, he insisted, “ there will be no victory for anyone. »

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However, Mike Hammer intends to respect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Ethiopia. “ It’s their country he said forcefully. This is why the United States, according to him, wholeheartedly supports the African Union, its mediator Olusegun Obasanjo and any other actor Alluding to former Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, appointed by his successor William Ruto to look into the crisis.

US sanctions are not excluded. against those who deserve it “, he however specified. While saying ” prefer to focus on the positive », Including the discussions that are currently taking place in New York, on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly.

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We spotted movements of Eritrean troops crossing the border. We are very worried and we condemn it. All foreign external actors must respect the territorial integrity of Ethiopia and avoid fueling the conflict. We couldn’t be clearer. We repeated it.

Mike Hammer condemns joint Ethiopia-Eritrea offensive in Tigray