Ethiopia Employs Graduates to Help Fight Against Tigray Rebels

The Ethiopian Government has recruited civilians especially graduates to help fight against rebels in Tigray Region. Responding to a mobilization call by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, some new recruits say they are eager to get to the front.

Early in the month of August, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed called on “all able-bodied Ethiopians” to join the armed forces, as the nine-month conflict in Tigray has spread in recent weeks to two neighboring regions in the north of the country.

The Prime Minister’s office said in a statement, “It is now time for all able-bodied Ethiopians to join the defence forces, special forces, and militias and show their patriotism,” less than two months after declaring a ceasefire.

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One of the new recruits said on Tuesday at his graduation that “People are being displaced from their homes, including children and elderly people. When you see this, it motivates you to go and fight.”

“What initiated us to join the war is the atrocities that have been committed. When you take the massacre in Mai Kadra, the attack on the northern command, and the killings in Kobo and Afar, these are heinous and alarming. We want to eliminate this junta (TPLF).”

The conflict in Tigray has seen a dramatic turnaround since late June.

The fighting began in November after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed sent the federal army into Tigray to remove the regional authorities, which had emerged from the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF). According to the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize winner, the operation was in response to attacks on federal army camps ordered by the TPLF.

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It declared victory in late November after the capture of the regional capital Mekele.

But on June 28, pro-TPLF rebel forces recaptured Mekele and then much of Tigray

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