A week ago, terrorist TPLF forces shelled villages in the Afar region massacring hundreds of innocent citizens in an ethnic cleansing manner and deliberately provoked another round of war on the route through which relief food has been transported for the people of Tigray worsening the already precarious situation of citizens in Tigray region.
Terrorist TPLF is still holding 1010 trucks that were transporting food to the region and in gross violation of human rights and violation of military ethics used the trucks for transporting army conscripts who were forced at gunpoint to fight in the war against fellow citizens in Amhara and Afar.
By attacking Abaala and two other districts in the Fenti Resu zone in the Afar region from six fronts not only did the terrorist forces kill innocent children, mothers and the elderly, but they also blocked the relief route to the Tigray region and prevented 27 relief food-laden trucks from entering Tigray in a bid to starve the people of Tigray. Regrettably, the international community as usual has kept quiet and chose to ignore the plight of the people of Tigray.
A week ago, Dr Tedros Adhanom, the W.H.O chief lamented that Tigray is on a total blockade and relief food is not reaching the needy population in the region. But the reality on the ground vividly depicts that terrorist TPLF is responsible for any level of famine or starvation in the region.
On September 30, 2021, he tweeted “In Tigray, Ethiopia, over 5 million people face starvation. With famine comes widespread diseases and death. We call for urgent, unimpeded, entry of humanitarian aid including food, medical supplies, equipment, fuel and cash.”
The whole world, including countries and organizations that support the terrorist organization, is very well aware of the fact that terrorist TPLF has created a very dangerous step by waging war on the lifeline of the people of Tigray. As a leader of a reputed UN organ, Dr. Tedros should have also voiced his concern for the starvation and proliferation of diseases that he mentioned.
His ethnocentric viewpoint does not tally with his global responsibilities as he is tolerating and probably endorsing the pillage on peasant farmlands in Amhara and Afar as well as the well-recorded shooting of livestock. Terrorist TPLF has looted medical supplies from almost all medical institutions in Amhara and Afar regions accumulating a stockpile of medicaments that can be used for the needy in Tigray. Dr. Tedros is dead silent on the human rights violations his organization is conducting on Ethiopia, a founding member of the UN.
This is a double standard on the part of the W.H.O. which put Ethiopia’s request for the behaviour being exhibited by the Director- General of W.H.O on a shelf.
With no exaggeration, terrorist TPLF is the only so-called liberation front that is fighting against its people creating a regional concentration camp in which it is deliberately starving its people. The facts on its atrocities against its people are visible on the ground and known to its people and the world thanks to satellite technology.
In utter disrespect for the country’s sovereignty and the territorial integrity of the nation, on November 3, 2020, the terrorist group conducted cowardice and inhuman massacre on army officers of the Northern command who were protecting the people of Tigray, supporting the development programs in the region and fighting off swarms of locust and the proliferation of COVID-19 in the region. A shameful disservice to the well being of its people. In an article published on July 2, 2021, entitled “the Plough and the Kalashnikov, Greg Mills wrote.
But underlying the TPLF rebellion was a fundamental refusal to accept the loss of power in 2018 with the installation of the Abiy government, and more basically a deluded assessment of their ability to maintain the same level of control over the national government that they had enjoyed until then.”
Before proclaiming a unilateral ceasefire and pulling out the military forces from Tigray, the government left more than 400,000 quintals of food, edible oil and a huge amount of fertilizers for farmers in the region which was also witnessed by Samantha Power who visited Mekele upon her visit to Ethiopia. The food was misappropriated and used as a tool for recruiting fighters from among the local population.
Earlier, during the establishment of the Tigray Interim Administration, terrorist TPLF cadres were preventing the local farmers not to engaging in farming their plots of land and were forcing them to get enlisted in the hundreds of camps that the terrorist group has organized in Tigray to fight against the people of Ethiopia it branded as “the enemy”. The farmers missed the farming season and were made to beg food from the terrorist group.
On December 8, 2021, Al-Jazeera reported that The World Food Program (WFP) has suspended food distribution in Ethiopia’s Kombolcha and Dessie towns after looting of supplies that staff was unable to stop due to intimidation, including being held at gunpoint, according to the United Nations.
According to Al-Jazeera United Nations spokesman Stephane Dujarric on Wednesday said a large number of humanitarian food supplies, including nutritional items for malnourished children, were stolen and looted in Kombolcha in the Amhara region.
“The small-scale theft of food escalated into mass looting of warehouses across Kombolcha in recent days, reportedly by elements of the Tigrayan forces and some members of the local population,” Dujarric told reporters.
“Such harassment of humanitarian staff by armed forces is unacceptable. It undermines the ability of the United Nations and all of our humanitarian partners to deliver assistance when it is most needed,” he added.
The incidents will worsen malnutrition and prolong food insecurity in northern Ethiopia, where an estimated 9.4 million people across the Tigray, Amhara and Afar regions need critical food assistance, Dujarric said.
It is shameful that terrorist TPLF known for its lies and misinformation has denied the action and continued to blame the Ethiopian government for everything going on in the regional state. In a statement it issued on December 10, 2021, the so-called Tigray External Affairs Office said.
“Over the past two days, there have been some media reports, citing a brief statement by the World Food Program in Ethiopia (WFP Ethiopia), that Tigray forces have looted food stock that had been stored in the city of Kombolcha. While this baseless claim has received undeserved coverage, the truth of the matter is that at no time during their stay in Kombolcha did Tigrayan forces ever loot aid meant for those in desperate need of emergency assistance.”
“Contrary to the falsehoods being propagated by the Abiy regime, our forces did not loot any food aid; in fact, they protected it, even as their families and compatriots were subject to starvation. This has been communicated to relevant UN agencies and the United States Agency for International Development/Catholic Relief Services (USAID/CRS). As always, the criminal Abiy regime continues to throw one lie after another to whitewash its complicity in starving millions of Ethiopians.”
Even if terrorist TPLF sought the official UN Statement was a lie, again it attributed the case to the leadership of the Ethiopian government which had nothing to do with the incident. This reminds one of the Ethiopia anecdotes which states “stealing camel and trying to hide”
Imagine, TPLF is deliberately starving its kith and kin to attract the attention of the world and falsely criticizing the government for a blockade of food aid. For almost a year, farmers in Tigray have been prevented from tilling their plots of land resulting not only in an alarming level of food deficiency but also changing the demographic mix in the region as the villages are now full of very old persons and the disabled. All this is of course done in the name of liberating Tigray.
Terrorist TPLF’s multiple attempts to expand into the territory of the Afar region had two basic intents the first is to choke Ethiopia from having access to the main international outlet to Djibouti Port and to annex the region as part of the so-called de-facto Tigray State. The second is to control the relief food pipeline to Tigray and smuggle in various communications and other materials it could use for the war against the people of Ethiopia as it has done in the past.
This terrorist organization and its supporters abroad have already turned the relief and humanitarian challenges in Tigray into a tool for exerting pressure on the Ethiopian government through false propaganda, misinform and extortion.
The UN, EU and several western countries are well aware of the savage activities of the terrorist TPLF but still refrain from condemning the incidents and taking the necessary actions to deter.
Late last year on August 31, 2021, in an interview with Ethiopian State media, USAID director, Sean Jones, said that the TPLF is exploiting the situation inappropriately.
We feel that aid is being forcefully taken away from those who need it, he said, as reported by EBA. He added, “What I can say with certainty is that the TPLF looted warehouses in areas where they entered.”
He also made references to TPLF loots in the Amhara region (in North Wollo and South Gondar) where the TPLF forces controlled several towns. Recent reports indicate that the TPLF forces lost several towns.
They employed scorched earth policies. They have destroyed schools and health facilities, including hospitals, among other things.
All told, terrorist TPLF holds sole responsibility for the starvation in Tigray because it has continued to obstruct the smooth flow of food to Tigray and has confiscated food meant for the needy. The world needs to expose the treachery of TPLF which tries to shift the blame on others while it is the main culprit for any level of starvation in Tigray.
Editor’s Note: The views entertained in this article do not necessarily reflect the stance of The
BY SOLOMON DIBABA
THE ETHIOPIAN THURSDAY 27 JANUARY 2022