CNA Staff, Nov 11, 2020 / 17:32 pm America/Denver (CNA).
A conflict between the Ethiopian government and the government of Ethiopia’s Tigray region must halt immediately, or it will destroy more lives and turn the country into a “failure,” Ethiopia’s Catholic bishops have said.
“We, the Catholic Bishops of Ethiopia urge both parties to immediately stop the armed conflict and start peaceful dialogue for the benefit of the people and resolve their differences in the spirit of understanding, mutual respect and trust,” Cardinal Berhaneyesus Souraphiel of Addis Ababa said in a Nov. 9 statement from the Catholic Bishops Conference of Ethiopia.
The bishops said they were saddened by the armed conflict and the resulting deaths, displacement of people, and destruction of property, Catholic News Service reported.
“Conflict between brotherly people does not help anyone. Instead, it destroys lives of innocent people and it is an act that will turn our country into a failure and (create) extreme poverty,” the Ethiopian bishops said. They regretted the failure of truce negotiation efforts by religious leaders, elders and others.
In the northern Ethiopian region of Tigray, the regional government is run by the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF). The group once dominated the ruling coalition of Ethiopia but felt marginalized by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s political changes after he took office in 2018. He dissolved the ruling coalition and merged its ethnicity-based regional parties into a single party, the Prosperity Party, which the TPLF refused to join.