URGENT APPEAL FOR AN IMMEDIATE CEASEFIRE IN ETHIOPIA AND RETURN OF ALL TELECOMMUNICATIONS

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On Wednesday, 4 November 2020, with the world's eyes focused on the US elections, the Ethiopian prime minister, Abiy Ahmed, initiated an all-out military invasion by the federal army on the region of Tigray in Ethiopia, an action with the potential to escalate into a devastating civil conflict.

Abiy Ahmed has shut down all contact between the region and the outside world, making it impossible to gain information about the impact on the civilian population and the number of civilian and military casualties. Airstrikes have reportedly been carried out on the dense and heavily populated city of Mekelle, with the PM stating that there will be more.

The region is in a vulnerable position, since to the north it borders Eritrea, a country whose president Isaias Afwerki holds a long-standing grudge against Tigray’s leaders – there have been unconfirmed reports that Eritrean forces have crossed the border and joined Abiy's campaign. 

Abiy Ahmed has ignored calls from the Head of the UN, the US Secretary of State and the African Union, for an immediate ceasefire, and continues to attack his own people whilst depriving them of their fundamental human rights.

This petition calls upon the UK and US governments and on the leaders of the United Nations and the African Union to intervene in order to prevent the risk of heavy civilian casualties, the displacement of civilian populations and a potential humanitarian crisis, and to press for an immediate ceasefire so that peace can return to Ethiopia.