Ethiopia’s Abiy visits, holds talks with Museveni
Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | President Yoweri Museveni has today met the Prime Minister of Ethiopia Abiy Ahmed Ali as conflict in the Tigray region spreads to other parts of the country.
According to a short press release by the Presidential Press Unit, Abiy who was in Uganda for a one-day visit met Museveni today at State House Entebbe and held bilateral talks whose nature was never disclosed.
“The two leaders discussed various issues and agreed to further strengthen cooperation in bilateral, regional and international issues of common interest. Ethiopia and Uganda have been cooperating in various peace processes in the region,” the press lease reads in part.
PM Abiy said, “My appreciation to President Museveni for a warm welcome to Uganda and important deliberations on various bilateral and regional issues. I look forward to meeting again soon.”
The meeting was also attended by the Ethiopian Head of Prosperity Party Main Office, Binalf Anduwalem, the State Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia, Redwan Hussain and Alemtsehay Meseret, Ethiopia’s Ambassador to Uganda. On Uganda’s side Foreign Affairs Minister Gen. Jeje Odongo and Uganda’s High Commissioner to Addis Ababa Rebecca Amuge Otengo also attended.
After the meeting in Entebbe, Abiy moved to Rwanda where he held talks with President Paul Kagame.
History of Ethiopia conflict
Fighting broke out in the Ethiopian region of Tigray after the government accused the TPLF, the party that governed the region of insubordination.
The TPLF ruled Ethiopia with an iron fist for over 30 years until April 2018 when Abiy Ahmed was appointed as Prime Minister to replace Haille Mariam Desalegn who resigned after months of antigovernment protests in the Oromia region where Abiy comes from.
For his rapprochement with Ethiopia’s arch-rival Eritrea, Abiy was even awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2019.
His international image however took a nosedive the following year after he was accused of human rights violation as his force tried to put out what he called a rebellion in the Tigray region. For over eight moths the Ethiopian Federal Forces took over Tigray until about three months ago when they were driven out of the region by the TPLF.
Fighting also spread to neighboring regions of Amhara and Afar and the TPLF has threatened to takeover Addis Ababa, if Abiy doesn’t recognize their control of Tigray. Therefore, his coming to Uganda to speak to Museveni raises suspicion of whether he’s trying to enlist his support.
Uganda has intervened either politically or militarily in a number of countries in Africa, including neighbors South Sudan and others far afield like Somalia.