Peace negotiations (per 15 March)

  • US Secretary of State Antony Blinken was received by a State Minister of the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs at his arrival at the airport in Addis Ababa.
  • The US Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor (DRL) announced ahead of the visit that it “anticipates spending $1.975 million to support independent investigations of human rights atrocities and justice and accountability processes for alleged atrocities committed by all sides in Ethiopia.”
  • Sources speculate this may have caused the absence of Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonnen at the reception of the delegation.
  • Blinken met with PM Abiy, discussing bilateral and regional matters and strengthening partnership between countries, stated Blinken’s spokesperson.
  • The parties reportedly discussed the need for holding all sides of the conflict accountable for the atrocities committed during the war. 
  • Blinken and Mekonnen met in Addis Ababa during Blinken’s visit to Ethiopia. 
  • Blinken and Mekonnen deliberated on the implementation of the Pretoria Cessation of Hostilities (CoH) Agreement, confirmed the spokesperson for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia, Meles Alem.
  • The spokesperson said that both officials highlighted the positive developments under the CoH, the work of the Ethiopian Rehabilitation Commission as well as Disarmament, Demobilization, and Rehabilitation processes. 
  • Blinken said during the meeting: “There’s a lot to be done, but the most important thing is to continue to deepen the peace that is now taking hold in the north and to strengthen our ties as we move along”.
  • Blinken and Mekonnen have also reportedly discussed the formation of an interim administration in Tigray. 
  • The visiting delegation also discussed Ethiopia’s development, democracy building, the economic situation as well as the peace and security situation within the Horn of Africa region. 
  • Blinken also announced new humanitarian assistance of 331 million USD to Ethiopia to support displaced persons, and people affected by war, drought and food insecurity.  
  • Blinken is due to meet with the Tigray representatives in Addis Ababa. 

Situation in Tigray (per 15 March)

  • The Tigray region is still facing a potentially catastrophic famine situation as aid is trickling in, but not enough to meet the large humanitarian needs, warns Sahan Foundation.

Situation in Ethiopia (per 15 March)

  • The Ethiopian Joint Security and Intelligence Task Force accused some foreign nationals of illegal activities including printing and circulating dollar currency, drug use and weapons circulation. The accused foreigners allegedly entered the country on tourist visas.
  • Five of those foreign nationals have been detained. Their nationalities are not known. 
  • Ethiopia’s general inflation rate was reported at 33.7 percent in February 2023, showing a decline of 0.2 percent from January this year, according to the Ethiopian Statistics Service (ESS).
  • 27 million birr in food assistance and 800,000 birr cash assistance was delivered by The Ethiopian Red Cross Association to people affected by drought in Borena and Moyale areas. 

Regional Situation (per 15 March)

  • Minni Minnawi, Political Secretary of the Sudanese Democratic Bloc which is not part of the framework agreement, reportedly rejected the appointment of a prime minister before reaching full agreement on the processes around political declaration and (transitional) constitution, reports Sudan Tribune. 
  • Yasir Arman, a leading member of the Sudanese Forces for Freedom and Change (FFC) is reported to have said that dialogue with the military leaders over the appointment of a new prime minister as the political process is almost at the end stage.

International Situation (per 15 March)

  • US State Secretary Antony Blinken and IGAD Secretary Dr Workneh Gebeyehu met in Addis Ababa. 
  • In a tweet message, Dr Workneh said “We discussed & underscored IGAD’s essential role in regional peace and security architecture and pledged to continue enhancing the IGAD-U.S. strategic partnership”.
  • In a press briefing, Xue Bing, Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa Affairs of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of China, is reported to have said the international community has to take concrete actions towards reconstruction and economic and social development of Ethiopia.
  • He also said by taking those actions, the international community should help Ethiopia achieve lasting peace, development, and prosperity.

Links of interest

Twitter: MFA Ethiopia
DPM & FM Demeke Discusses With US Secretary Of State Antony J. Blinken
Blinken meets Ethiopian leaders to repair ties damaged by war 
Secretary Antony J. Blinken And Ethiopian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonnen Before Their Meeting
Blinken meets Ethiopian leader to repair ties damaged by war
$331 Million in New Humanitarian Assistance for Ethiopia
The United States and Ethiopia: A Long-Term Partnership
Security, Intelligence Task Force accuses “some foreign nationals” of alleged dollar laundering and counterfeit 
Ethiopia’s general inflation rate declines to 33.7 percent in February: ESS 
Facebook: Addis Standard Amharic
Dr Workneh Gebeyehu on his meeting with Antony Blinken 
Sudan’s non-signatories reject the formation of a new government without them 
Advocates Call on Blinken to Demand Accountability for Atrocities in Ethiopia 
China urges IC to intensify supports to Ethiopia’s north 

Disclaimer: All information in this Situation Report is presented as a fluid update report, as to the best knowledge and understanding of the authors at the moment of publication. EEPA does not claim that the information is correct but verifies to the best of ability within the circumstances. Publication is weighed on the basis of interest to understand potential impacts of events (or perceptions of these) on the situation. Check all information against updates and other media. EEPA does not take responsibility for the use of the information or impact thereof. All information reported originates from third parties and the content of all reported and linked information remains the sole responsibility of these third parties. Report to any additional information and corrections.