Ethiopian FM Slams “Reckless” Commission of Human Rights Experts

ADDIS ABABA – The Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Friday slammed the “reckless” Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia after the Commission urged the UN Security Council to take action against the East African nation.

The controversial commission was set up by the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) to conduct an “impartial” probe into human rights violations in the context of the northern Ethiopia conflict.

The UN Security Council was scheduled to discuss the situation in Ethiopia on Thursday after a renewed conflict that brought the five-month government initiated humanitarian truce to an end on August 24, 2022.

Ahead of the meeting, the Commission issued a statement on Thursday calling on “all parties immediately to cease hostilities” while urging the Security Council “to take action on Ethiopia.”

The meeting, scheduled at the request of the U.S., Norway, France and Ireland, was reportedly delayed due to disagreement.

In a response on Friday, Ethiopia’s Foreign Ministry expressed its dismay by the statement that the Commission issued ahead of the UN security council.

“The Commission has no competence or proper appreciation of the conflict triggered by the TPLF in violation of the humanitarian truce,” MoFA said.

“The Commission cannot arrogate to itself a mandate to pronounce on matters of threat to peace and security”.

“Reckless behaviour”

Backed by the US, EU and Co, the UN human rights council (UNHRC) decided to establish the commission last year despite Ethiopia’s opposition and without any support from its African members.

Addis Ababa sees the decision was politically motivated saying the task given to it was already carried out jointly by the UNHRC and Ethiopian human rights commission.

The Commission has Kaari Betty Murungi of Kenya, Steven Ratner from the United States and Radhika Coomaraswamy from Sri Lanka as its members.

“The commission’s ultra vires and blatant call for action against Ethiopia by the Security Council only show the reckless behaviour of the Commission and vindicates the Government’s assertion that the resolution establishing the Commission, and the works of the Commission are politically motivated,” the Foreign Ministry statement reads.

MoFA also accused the Commission of weaponizing human rights “for political pressure and exposed its true intentions, foreclosing all doors of cooperation with the Government.”

“While rejecting the statement made by the Commission,” the Ministry said it “would like to reiterate the commitment of the Government of Ethiopia to continue respecting and ensuring respect for Human Rights and bringing violators to justice.”

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