Special representatives from the U.S and E.U have arrived in Mekelle, the troubled Tigray region’s capital, as part of global attempts to bring an end to the civil conflict, which has been raging for 21 months. Mekelle is located in northern Ethiopia.
Annette Weber, a special representative for the E.U, and Mike Hammer, a special representative for the US, are shown meeting with top regional authorities, including Debretsion Gebremicheal, in photos supplied by media sites connected to the Tigrayan army.
“Mike Hammer & Annette Weber, US & EU Special Envoys for the Horn of Africa respectively, arrived in Mekelle today along with Ambassador Tracey Ann Jacobson, Chargé d’Affaires at the U.S. Embassy in Ethiopia, and other representatives and ambassadors to discuss current issues.
“During the officials’ discussion with the authorities of the Tigray region, they were given a detailed explanation of what has been going on in the region as well as Tigray’s stance on peace, humanitarian aid, infrastructure, territorial integrity, and other issues,” Ethiopian Media Outfit Addis Zeybe said in a statement on Twitter.
This is the first time the envoys have been to the city together, and it coincides with positive indications of potential peace talks between the federal administration and the troops of Tigray.
The ambassadors’ Tuesday joint statement stated that “political discussion is vital to address the situation in northern Ethiopia and create lasting peace.”
The two envoys demanded the swift restoration of basic services in the region, such as electricity, telephones, and banking, even as they welcomed “public commitment by both parties to engage in discussions.”
The resumption of the services has been demanded by the Tigrayan troops, but a senior government official stated last week that Addis Ababa was prepared for the discussions “without preconditions.”