(Source: Tghat, 20 February 2021) –
The Tigray government issued an 8-point terms of peace yesterday. The terms of peace can be read in Tigrinya, in English and also in audio (Tigrinya) from Dimtsi Weyane. Today three Tigray political parties issue a 6-point statement that largely overlap with the Tigray government’s terms of peace. Their demands are targeted at the international community and include the immediate withdrawal of Eritrean army and Amhara militia, access to humanitarian aid and media, and independent investigation of crimes of atrocities and end to war and a start of negotiation. We present their joint statement as is below.
A Joint Press Release by Salsay Weyane Tigray (SAWET) , National Congress of Great Tigray (the Congress) and Tigray Independence Party (TIP) on the Current Situation in Tigray
More than hundred days have been counted since the invasion of Tigray by allied forces of tyranny from within and outside of Ethiopia. During these hundred days of pain and agony for Tigray, all kinds of abominable horrors have been committed by these forces on Tigray and its people. Tigray’ territories are scrambled like a fallen pray’s body, its people are indiscriminately killed, properties destructed and looted women are raped. All these cringing stories of horror are still continuing unabated.
The invasion of Tigray cannot be said to have come as a surprise to the international community. We are aware that the government of Tigray had been notifying the international community of an impending invasion of Tigray through open letters, press releases and every means it had. The government had also been pleading for action from the international community before things went out of hand. Regrettably, all the pleas by the government of Tigray fell on deaf ears and we are all left to witness all the destruction and humanitarian crises that has unfolded.
In the last one hundred days, it is with great sorrow that we learned the east Africa region was left to be ruled by force rather than law. During those unfortunate days, nations have invaded other nations with no precincts, a government had invited invading armies on its own people, nations have sent drones to massacre people of another nation, armies have committed war crimes with impunity and many more other horrific acts have become daily occurrences hurting the hearts and minds of all humanity. It is unfortunate to see that nations in the region are learning diplomacy, negotiations and peaceful engagement are becoming languages of the weak and force seems be the only way to secure survival.
The people of Tigray have become a target of all these acts of violence because they chose to exercise their right to self-determination through an election with the biggest turnout in their history and a hopeful participation of opposition parties. In this election, the people of Tigray showed their deep aspiration for democracy and plurality of ideas. Contrary to this though, the invaders (both foreign and domestic) have either no incident of election in their history or decided to postpone an election to cling to power without popular will. Tigray was seen as a bad example by the invaders as a bad example against their plan for the region as whole. Thus, the invasion is an invasion of tyranny on a democratic aspiration of a people.
We are afraid that inaction on the part of the international community has begun to nurture new dictatorships in the horn of Africa in addition to the ones that we already had. Inaction by international community will also expedite the catastrophe of the human disaster in Tigray and further push the mobilization of the Tigray people for armed resistance. We fear the situation in Tigray will further escalate to the regions as we have started to observe signs of that. It is becoming a firm assertion of not only us but of all concerned people, governments and institutions of the globe that failure to act by the international community will make the horn of Africa an epicenter of unparalleled human misery. The effect of this unfortunate situation in this region will definitely be felt far and across the world beyond the seas as well.
With a firm belief that the international community will act and spare this region from the looming disaster, we, the above mentioned opposition parties in Tigray, call upon the international community to act, for a second time in weeks. In what follows, we are just repeating all our demands in our previous press release.
The international community should act swiftly,
- to ensure an immediate withdrawal of the invading Eritrean army
- to ensure an immediate withdrawal of the aggressor Amhara militia and Ethiopian army
- to ensure a secure access and direct humanitarian assistance in Tigray
- to ensure an unrestricted access to the international media to get to Tigray and cover what is happening.
- to ensure a deep, independent and international investigation of the egregious war crimes and crimes against humanity that are committed by all forces that wreaked havoc in Tigray and make the perpetrators accountable.
- to press the Ethiopian government to stop the ongoing war in Tigray and start a dialogue process aiming at resolving the political problems in Tigray and the country.
Tigray will prevail!!
Salsay Weyane Tigray (SAWET)
National Congress of Great Tigray
Tigray Independence Party
February 2021, Mekele-Tigray