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News: PM Abiy tells Parliament Deputy PM and FM Demeke Mekonnen leading ‘a study committee’ of negotiation

PM Abiy Ahmed at the 13th regular session of the House of People’s Representatives held today. Picture: PMO

Addis Abeba – Responding to a question raised by a member of parliament this morning regarding the rumored talks between the federal government and Tigray state authorities, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said his government “wants peace with everyone” and revealed for the first time that “a study committee” has been formed under the leadership of Demeke Mekonnen, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs.

“an official study committee has been set up under the leadership of the Deputy Prime Minister”

PM Abiy Ahmed

Prime Minister Abiy’s statement comes in the backdrop of a report by the French newspaper Le Monde, which published a news last week on Thursday citing its sources that “behind the scenes” talk was to take place between the Federal government and Tigrayan authorities. The news portal said the talks were scheduled to take place at the end of June in Arusha, Tanzania. PM Abiy did not directly link the “study committee” with the rumored talks but said: “We want peace with everyone. Every day of peace brings benefits to us,” and pledged that “negotiations are not made without public knowledge.”

The Prime Minister further said that “an official study committee has been set up under the leadership of the Deputy Prime Minister”. But “no results have been announced yet” by the committee, which the Prime Minister referred to as “this is the negotiating committee” without further elaboration.

“When the war broke out we announced it to the people; nothing will make us hide it when negotiations start,” PM Abiy said and added that “there is no single enemy, but the enemy of the country; and there is no work that can be done alone, but together.”

According to the Prime Minister, the desire of the people of Ethiopia “and that of ours” is to spend expenses “not for bullets but for development,”; but he told law makers that “just because we want peace does not mean that we are doing secrete negotiations.” AS

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