The Ethiopia Government and Tigray rebels on Wednesday agreed to sign an agreement to end the vicious civil war that has been escalating in Tigray region for the past two years.
The pact was brokered by a team of Kenya’s former president Uhuru Kenyatta, Nigeria’s former president Olusegun Obasanjo and former South Africa’s Deputy President Phumzile Mlambo-Ngucuka, which has been meeting in South Africa.
In the process spearheaded by the African Union (AU), both sides agreed to end their long-drawn conflict that has left thousands of Ethiopians dead amid warnings of a ravaging famine.
Majority of people living in northern Tigray region need food donations, with the World Health Organization (WHO) optimistic the peace pact will allow resumption of aid deliveries.
The news has been received with skepticism given a previous ceasefire agreement to end the Ethiopian civil war was violated in August a few months after either side pledged to it.
Officials from the Ethiopian government and Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) have agreed to a disarmament process and to allow key services to resume led by aid deliveries.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres welcomed the deal as a “first step” and expressed hope that it will restore peace and stability to millions of Ethiopians affected by the war.
Tigray region has been isolated from the outside world since the war began hospitals running without drugs as banking, phone, power and internet services disconnected.
The war started on November 4, 2020 after troops loyal to the ruling party in Tigray, the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), seized an army barracks causing the Ethiopian army to seize the region.
This came after relations between the government and TPLF that had dominated the entire Ethiopia for 20 years up to when Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed ascended to power in 2018