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Sebahat Nega under custody

Sebahat Nega under custody

The Ethiopian National Defense Force arrested the founding member of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), Sebahat Nega, along with seven other individuals, including two colonels, who had defected from the national army.

He was captured hiding in a ravine where it was extremely difficult to reach, ENDF Deployment Department Head, Brigadier General Tesfaye Ayalew, told the Ethiopian News Agency.

Sebahat is amongst dozens of leaders of the TPLF captured by the army since earlier this week. Three days ago, the Ethiopian National Defense Force (ENDF) disclosed it had captured former officials of the front hiding inside a cave, valleys, and in farmer's houses.

This includes Solomon Kidane, former deputy mayor of Addis Ababa, Tekelewoyni, Former CEO of Relief Society of Tigray and Abadi Zemu (Amb.), Kidusan Nega, Former Speaker of Tigray Region and one of his siblings of Sebahat.

Security measures were taken against those who refused to surrender. So far, Sekou Toure, a former Senior Official of Tigray, who admitted TPLF forces attacked the North command of the National Army, is among those who have been killed after refusing to surrender. 

Others who trained TPLF’s militia and later coordinated security protection for their leaders have also been captured, according to Tesfaye.

Almost a month and a half ago, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) announced the end of military operations in Tigray region, after the national army controlled Mekelle. Yet fighting has continued in many parts of the region as the army attempts to capture senior officials of the TPLF.

By mid-last month, the ENDF offered a 10 million birr (USD 260,000) reward for the whereabouts of the fugitive leaders of TPLF, including Debretsion Gebremicahel, former President of Tigray.

Although none of the fighting forces have reported causalities due to the fighting between the two forces, it is believed that thousands have lost their lives due to the war.

Last week, the Tigray Emergency Coordination Center (ECC), in a meeting held to discuss humanitarian needs based on assessment findings, disclosed that more than 4.5 million people in the region need emergency food assistance, including 2.2 million IDPs.