African Union bloc has appealed for a cease-fire in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region, where federal troops have launched an offensive against the local government for allegedly targeting a military base last week.
“The chairperson [Moussa Faki Mahamat] appeals for the immediate cessation of hostilities and calls on parties to respect human rights and ensure the protection of civilians, ” the African Union (AU) said in a statement.
The AU, headquartered in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa, called for peace talks to accompany a truce.
According to Ethiopian broadcaster Fana, various Tigrayan forces surrendered, while the military also captured a road leading from the town to the Sudanese border. The Ethiopian Press Agency posted photos that it said showed federal soldiers, supported by forces from the neighboring Amhara region at Humera.
State media on Tuesday reported that Ethiopian troops seized Humera airport in Tigray, near the border with Sudan and Eritrea, in what it described as efforts to destabilize local leaders defying Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s authority.
The local government’s communication office did not comment on the status of the airport.
There was also no immediate response from the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), which rules over the state of more than 9 million people.