Ethiopia: Eritrean forces still in Tigray?
Eritrea lodged a diplomatic protest with the United Kingdom Aug. 12 after the British ambassador to Ethiopia publicly called "for Eritrean forces to withdraw completely back to their own borders." Eritrean forces intervened in support of Ethiopia's federal government during the two-year war in northern Tigray region, but supposedly withdrew after last year's ceasefire. Asmara's diplomatic statement decried "unwarranted remarks" by the ambassador, Darren Welch, without explicitly stating that it no longer has forces in Tigray. One day earlier, the UK Minister of State for Development & Africa Andrew Mitchel issued a finding that "Eritrean forces remaining in Tigray present an obstacle to the overall objective of peace and stability within the region." The controversy comes 10 months after a formal ceasefire in Tigray that has led to a reduction of violence in the region, although rights abuses and a humanitarian crisis persist, exacerbated by a devastating drought. (AFP, Jurist)