Stepping Toward Peace

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Representatives of the Ethiopian government and rebels from the northern Tigray region met in South Africa this week to negotiate a peace agreement to end nearly two years of civil war, Al Jazeera reported.

The talks in Pretoria mark the first time the two warring sides have met since the conflict started in November 2020. At the time, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed sent troops into Tigray after accusing the region’s ruling Tigray People’s Liberation Front of attacking federal army camps.

South African officials said the negotiations are being mediated by an African Union team led by Nigeria’s former President Olusegun Obasanjo. The talks will end on Sunday.

The meetings come amid a surge of fighting following the collapse of a humanitarian truce in August. Last week, Ethiopian forces captured three towns in Tigray, sparking concerns that the advancing troops will commit abuses against civilians.

The conflict has killed thousands of people, displaced millions and left hundreds of thousands on the verge of famine.

Last year, a joint investigation by the United Nations and Ethiopia’s human rights commission found that all sides in the civil war had committed war crimes.

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