ADDIS ABABA – The African Union has launched the peace talks to end the conflict in northern Ethiopia today.
In a statement, AU Commission Chair Moussa Faki Mahamat said he was pleased to launch the direct talks between the between the government of Ethiopia and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) in South Africa.
Today’s talks is the first direct talks that the two sides have held since the conflict began in north Ethiopia nearly two years ago.
It is part of the ongoing AU-led process to support the Parties find a political solution to resolve the conflict, Mahamat said.
Olusegun Obasanjo, the AU High Representative for the Horn of Africa, is facilitating the talks, along with former President of Kenya, Uhuru Kenyatta, and former Deputy President South Africa, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka.
The AUC Chairperson did not disclose the agendas discussed on the first day of the talks.
The Chairperson , however, said he was “encouraged by the early demonstration of commitment to peace by the Parties and to seek a lasting political solution to the conflict in the supreme interest of Ethiopia.”
He reiterated the AU’s commitment to support the Parties in “an Ethiopian-owned and AU-led process to silence the guns towards a united, stable, peaceful and resilient Ethiopia.”
Mahamat also expressed his appreciation to President Cyril Ramaphosa for hosting the talks in the spirit of pan-African solidarity.
Representatives of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), the United Nations and the United States are participating as observers to the AU-led peace process.
The talks will continue until Sunday, 30th of October, according to the spokesperson of President Ramaphosa.
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