Three regional security forces from the Oromia region, the Sidama region and the Southern region have been sent to fronts in Tigray to fend of attacks the later is carrying out in a continued offensive on neighboring Amhara region.
Following reports of advances by the forces in the Tigray region that currently go by the name Tigray Defense Forces (TDF) who had repeatedly announced their gains made on the southern border of the region with the Amhara region, the latter called up on all the people to help defend the region in whatever they can.
Agegnehu Teshager, the region’s President categorized the situation as posing an existential threat to the people of Amhara and called for a concerted effort to curb this threat.
The region had also opened deposit accounts in various banks to mobilize finance to the region’s security forces which included the special forces, the regional police forces and local militia.
Although reports had shown that the first round of war in Tigray, where the Ethiopian National Defense Forces (ENDF) engaged in full force, had also involved regional security personnel, they have not been sent off to the fronts in such ceremonious manner. Apart from announcing the decisions to move these forces to the front, the government organized farewell events to these forces on Thursday July 15, 2021 which state affiliated media outlets covered.
Since the government left Tigray region after announcing a unilateral humanitarian ceasefire, the Tigrayan forces had been marching to reclaim administrative areas that were put under the Amhara regional government south of Tigray in addition to attacks launched on the Eritrean forces that had retreated to their country.
The government claims the ceasefire is meant to let farmers conduct their farming peacefully during the rainy season as well as to allow unfettered humanitarian access in the region.
As a result, the Tigrayan forces had reportedly occupied several towns along the southern border with Amhara triggering response from the Amhara region which ordered its security forces to stand in defense.
Similarly, the Dire Dawa City Administration police officers joined the war responding to the call.
In a statement the Afar region issued on Friday July 16, 2021, concerning current affairs, it accused the Tigray Peoples’ Liberation Front (TPLF) of not prioritizing national interest and for using child soldiers to fight with the “mother land” denying the people of Tigray the period of calmness intended by the declared ceasefire.
The Somali regional government statement on the same subject also heeded to the calls by the federal government to deploy forces in order to “save the country” by rendering support to the defense forces. It commits to support the federal government and the Amhara regional government in an effort to remove the Tigrayan force once and forever.
In a statement the ENDF Army Building Works Main Coordinator Bacha Debele (Let. Col.) gave to state media, he said that the TPLF forces did not respect the unilateral ceasefire declared by the federal government and attacked regional security forces exploiting this declaration.
He also indicated that the TPLF forces had attacked the defense forces based in Raya area. He further added that the TPLF is exploiting the gap created because of the unilateral ceasefire.
On a separate press statement, State Minister of Foreign Affairs, Redwan Hussein indicated that one of the reasons for the ceasefire was to allow access to organizations that deliver humanitarian support to the Tigray region. But, he said, some have continued their accusations of the government even after the ceasefire and increased access to humanitarian support. He also added that the international community including European Union member states and some individual officials within the US government are biased to the level that seems that they had taken the matter personally and had pushed the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) to adopt a resolution which could be used as a pretext for sanctioning Ethiopia. But equally, these bodies had intentionally ignored war crimes such as the use of child soldiers in Tigray region by the TPLF forces, he complained.