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US spells out steps Ethiopia must take ‘immediately’ to avoid sanctions

By Julian Pecquet
Posted on Tuesday, 21 September 2021 08:57, updated on Monday, 27 September 2021 12:33

Ethiopians protest against international pressure on the government over the conflict in Tigray, at a demonstration organised by the city mayor's office held at a stadium in the capital Addis Ababa, Ethiopia Sunday, May 30, 2021. (AP Photo/Mulugeta Ayene)

The Joe Biden administration has put Ethiopia on notice that it needs to see rapid progress on ceasefire negotiations and humanitarian access to Tigray if Addis Ababa wants to avoid a raft of painful sanctions.

In a follow-up call with regional media on Monday 20 September following Friday’s announcement of new executive authorities, State Department officials made clear the US had run out of patience after “months of failure by parties to the conflict to respond to international calls.”

The new order declares a national emergency and paves the way for the US to sanction Ethiopian and Eritrean government officials as well as leaders of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) and the Amhara regional government and its forces.