Mekelle, March 21, 2023 ( Tigrai Television)- EU says it supports U.S. finding that says crimes against humanity have been committed by Ethiopia, Eritrean, and Amhara forces.
“Full support of the US in condemning atrocities committed in Ethiopia, pushing for accountability and welcoming commitments to transitional justice, “EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs Josep Borrell wrote on Twitter this morning.
On Monday, U.S. State Department said that it determines “Ethiopian National Defense Forces, Eritrean Defense Forces, and Amhara forces also committed crimes against humanity, including murder, rape and other forms of sexual violence, and persecution,”
“Members of the Amhara forces also committed the crime against humanity of deportation or forcible transfer and committed ethnic cleansing through their treatment of Tigrayans in western Tigray.” The State Department added.
Ethiopia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs rejects U.S. findings as “untimely”, “selective”, and “inflammatory”. In a statement earlier today, the Ministry said “The Government of Ethiopia does not accept the blanket condemnations contained in the statement and does not see any value in such unilateral and adversarial approach”
The statement announced by Secretary of State Anthony Blinken also accused all parties to the conflict of committing war crimes. Blinken asked about the timing, said it was “appropriate to release the determination” at the time of the human rights report.
The Eritrean government, Tigrain authorities as well as Amhara regional government have not issued any statement regarding the determination until this time.
Senator Jim Risch, a top Republican on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said that Blinken’s finding was belated and that President Joe Biden’s administration could have done better to bring perpetrators to justice.
“The administration’s inaction undermined the US response to the world’s deadliest conflict in recent memory, particularly related to atrocities committed in Tigray,” Risch said in a statement on Monday.
Kaari Betty Murungi, the former Chairperson of the International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia, told the Human Rights Council in September of last year that its report found reasonable grounds to believe that the parties to the conflict in Ethiopia had committed serious violations and abuses of international human rights and humanitarian law since November 2020.
“Extrajudicial killings, rape, sexual violence, and starvation of the civilian population as a method of warfare” have happened in Ethiopia since the earliest days of the conflict, the Chair of the UN Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia told the UN Human Rights Council.
Many experts condemn the US government for omitting the designation of genocide to the crimes in Tigrai to pursue diplomatic gains in the region.