BY SUMUR TSEHAYE
Two leading opposition political parties protested the Ethiopian government’s decision to delist the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) from a list of terrorist designation.
The Ethiopian parliament on Wednesday removed the dominant party in the Tigray region from a list of “terrorist organizations”, a significant step towards establishing an interim regional government following the end of a two-year civil war.
TPLF which led the northern region into war with the federal government in late 2020, was designated a “terrorist” group in May 2021.
“The house has approved the decision to lift the TPLF’s terrorist designation with a majority vote,” the parliament said on Facebook.
However, Wednesday’s decision was strongly opposed by EZEMA (Ethiopian Society for Social Justice) and NAMA (National Movement of Amhara).
According to EZEMA, removing the TPLF’s terrorist group designation will not bring lasting peace, calling the decision neither “timely” nor “correct”.
“The decision to absolve the TPLF of its terrorist designation and release it from its culpability is a grave and irreparable mistake”. EZEMA alleged
“This action will have far-reaching consequences, and the ruling Prosperity Party and Ethiopian Government will bear the brunt of responsibility for the widespread devastation inflicted upon the nation by the TPLF”.
Furthermore, NAMA questioned the “legality” of the decision stating the absence of “several parliament members”.
On the other hand, a dispatch from the House said the move was meant to “consolidate the agreement between TPLF and the federal government of Ethiopia in Pretoria”.
The House said the decision is part of efforts to resume rule of law and protect the “national interests of Ethiopia”.
Moreover, following last week’s nomination of Getachew Reda by the Central Committee of TPLF, the Ethiopian government on Thursday confirmed that it has appointed a senior official in the TPLF as head of an interim government for Tigray after a peace deal ended a brutal two-year conflict.
“Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has appointed Getachew Reda as president of the Tigray region’s interim administration,” Abiy’s office said in a statement posted on Twitter.
PM Abiy’s announcement today came after yesterday’s decision by the Ethiopian House of Peoples Representatives (HoPR) to de-list the TPLF from its terrorist designation list.
The decision was approved by a majority vote, 61 against, and five abstentions.
(The East African Daily)