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PP delegation led by Adem Farah visits Mekelle

Heads of the Tigray People’s Liberation front (TPLF) deny reports of internal divisions as well as rumors of a potential merge with the incumbent Prosperity Party (PP). However, the leaders of both parties have disclosed they are engaging in a series of bilateral meetings to address prevailing issues in the country’s north.

A joint press release published on May 15, 2024, states that a consensus on a range of agendas has been reached in Mekelle this week after a PP delegation headed by Deputy Chair Adem Farah traveled to Tigray to meet with Debretsion Gebremichael (PhD), TPLF chair, and other senior party officials.

The talks marked the third meeting between the parties since the signing of the Pretoria agreement on November 2, 2022, which marked the end of the two-year war in northern Ethiopia.

The press release includes expressions of commitment from both sides towards addressing the underlying political causes of the war, and emphasizes a dedication to establishing a favorable political environment that would facilitate the successful implementation of the terms of the Pretoria peace deal.

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The TPLF said the parties have “identified common agendas despite differences in purpose and ideology.” On the other hand, PP says the two have “achieved a party-to-party agreement after identifying the main agendas.”

Both parties have agreed to collaborate “resolutely” in order to ensure long-lasting peace following comprehensive discussions. However, both parties denied recent rumors of a merger between them.

The statements detail that following detailed discussions on recent violence in Raya Zone, both parties concur that such an incident “should not have occurred and that it contradicted ongoing efforts to achieve lasting peace in the country.” The statements emphasize the need for peaceful conflict resolution and dialogue to prevent similar incidents in the future.

The press release also highlighted the importance of refraining from the dissemination of negative information and a commitment towards addressing emerging tensions and a collaborative effort to control “any conflicting trends that may arise again”.

On May 15, the President of the Tigray Interim Administration (TIA), Getachew Reda, expressed his satisfaction with the discussions, describing them as “very cordial” on his X (Twitter) account. He also highlighted that the primary focus of the talks was on “fostering peace and the importance of close collaboration to achieve that goal”.

According to Getachew’s Twitter account, the leadership of the TPLF and senior representatives from the PP engaged in another round of discussions covering a wide range of issues that hold significant implications for peace and stability in the country.

The TPLF has also strongly denied what it calls “false” and “misleading” claims by a May 12, 2024 report from Deutsche Welle (DW) Amharic, which suggested that internal strife within the party could result in “the leadership killing one another.”

A TPLF press release from May 16 urges the publication to correct the “mistaken information.” It also accuses the media of lacking professional responsibility and expresses disappointment in what it characterizes as allegations from a “responsible public media outlet.”

“Even though there is no such threat and reality on the ground, the news was intentionally cooked by some individuals, specifically responsible for that matter within the broadcaster, to create terror and uncertainty, and perhaps facilitate or reveal some unknown conspiratorial plan that doesn’t belong to TPLF and its leadership,” reads the press release.

The TPLF says that misleading information from the DW Amharic programme is “not unprecedented” and calls for thorough assessment and investigation to take corrective measures against those responsible for the allegedly false reports.

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