“Beginning tomorrow, I’ll head to the conflict entrance to steer the protection forces in particular person,” he wrote in an announcement on Twitter late Monday, urging residents to “lead the nation with a sacrifice” and be a part of him. “These of you who intention to be certainly one of Ethiopia’s kids who will likely be celebrated in historical past, stand up immediately in your nation, let’s meet on the conflict entrance.”

“Prior to now and within the current, the wants and lives of every certainly one of us is under [the needs of] Ethiopia,” Abiy added. “We’d reasonably die to save lots of Ethiopia than outlive Ethiopia.”

Abiy referred to the push because the “ultimate combat to save lots of Ethiopia” from “inside and exterior enemies” who he claims are “able to construct their energy on the weak point of Ethiopia.”

The assertion comes after the Tigrayan Folks’s Liberation Entrance (TPLF) — the previous ruling social gathering of Tigray — claimed its fighters had captured two cities as they advance in the direction of the capital Addis Ababa, a couple of yr after the battle erupted within the north of the nation. The TPLF, which dominated the nation for greater than three a long time earlier than Abiy got here to energy in 2018, has been designated a terrorist group by the present authorities.

One of many cities TPLF claims was captured on Saturday contains Shewa Robit, which is about 220 km (136 miles) northeast of Addis Ababa. CNN has not been capable of attain the federal authorities for touch upon the declare.

TPLF spokesman Getachew Reda responded to Abiy’s assertion in a tweet, warning that “our forces will not relent on their inexorable advance in the direction of bringing his chokehold on our individuals to an finish.”

Whereas the Prime Minister is on the battlefield, his duties and the duties of different directors who’ve joined the combat will likely be accomplished by federal and regional officers who will “work to their fullest capability” to supervise the event and administration of the nation.

“Ethiopia is the title of winners,” Abiy concluded his assertion, ” I by no means doubt that my technology shall pay the worth in its title as an icon of freedom.”

When Abiy obtained the Nobel Peace Prize in 2019 for ending a 20-year conflict between Ethiopia and Eritrea, he was lauded as a regional peacemaker. Now, he’s presiding over a protracted civil conflict with rebels in Tigray that by many accounts bears the hallmarks of genocide.

In November 2020, Abiy ordered a army offensive within the northern Tigray area and promised that the battle can be resolved shortly. One yr on, the combating has left hundreds useless, displaced greater than 2 million individuals from their properties, fueled famine and given rise to a wave of atrocities.

Awol Allo, an affiliate professor of regulation at Keele College within the UK who was amongst these nominated Abiy for the Peace Prize, wrote of his shock over the Prime Minister’s assertion on becoming a member of the entrance strains. “The announcement is replete with languages of martyrdom and sacrifice. That is so extraordinary and unprecedented, it reveals how determined the scenario is,” he tweeted on Monday.
Abiy has repeatedly used inflammatory language whereas urging supporters to stand up in opposition to Tigrayan forces. In late October, Fb eliminated a put up by Abiy that violated the corporate’s insurance policies on inciting violence.

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