Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Monday urged parties to the ongoing internal conflict in Ethiopia to find peaceful means to end the crisis.
Kenyatta in a statement issued in Nairobi, cautioned against a full-blown conflict in the country, saying Kenya and Ethiopia have for long served as anchor states for regional peace and stability.
“While acknowledging the internal efforts being made to end the conflict, President Kenyatta urged the warring parties to prioritize humanitarian needs of local populations by opening up corridors for essential supplies,” it said.
Kenyatta spoke Monday evening in Nairobi during a meeting with Ethiopia’s deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Foreign Affairs Demeke Mekonnen who paid him a courtesy visit.
During the meeting, Kenyatta urged the Federal Government and the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) to de-escalate the conflict saying the crisis risks eroding gains made by Ethiopians in developing their country. On his part, Mekonnen who also delivered a special message to Kenyatta from Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, briefed the Kenyan leader on the political and security situation in Ethiopia.
The Ethiopian premier launched a military offensive against the TPLF, the ruling party in the Northern region near the border with Eritrea after an attack on an Ethiopian military base stationed in the region on Nov. 4.
The political rift between the ruling party in the Tigray region and the Addis Ababa-based government of Ethiopia, deepened on Sept. 9 when the Tigray leaders organized an election which was not sanctioned by the Federal Parliament, following the postponement of nationwide polls this year.
The political contest between the two sides worsened after the government said it was withdrawing budgetary support to the Tigray regional authority. The Tigray authorities responded by mobilizing forces and later attacked a national army station in the region, sparking the current conflict.