In a statement issued on Dec. 02, 2020, the Tigray Government accuses the combined forces of Abiy Ahmed and Isaias Afewerki of unleashing heinous crimes that amount to ethnic cleansing.
The statement begins by characterizing the combined forces as invaders, and goes on to detail the crimes it alleges they have been committing.
According to the statement, the forces have been indiscriminately killing and chasing people away from their neighborhoods and repopulating vacated areas with aliens, with a clear intention of erasing Tigrayans off their ancestral lands. Where mass killings have not been possible, the forces have been trying, the statement alleges, to subjugate the people by unleashing a psychological warfare. There have been attempts to make people renounce their identity and accept a new one imposed from above.
The statement goes on to accuse Mr. Abiy Ahmed of sending his war planes and drones to bomb various civilian targets, including churches and factories. The statement adds that this effort is being accelerated with the help of the forces of Isaias Afewerki of Eritrea. In an extraordinary act of treason, Abiy Ahmed has encouraged forces sent by Isayas Afewerki to steal private and public properties and pillage factories that were the lifeline of thousands of people in Tigray. Thousands of livelihoods have been destroyed as a result and thousands left without jobs, and on the brink of starvation.
In particular, the statement accuses the combined forces of the following crimes:
- Indiscriminate killings with a clear objective of ethnic cleansing and material and psychological impoverishment of those who remain.
- Attempting to entirely wipe out local populations and replacing them with aliens with an objective of reifying the false belief held in some quarters that large territories in western Tigray belong to the Amhara region.
- Displacing about 1.3 million Tigrayans with constant bombing, shelling and bombardment of cities.
- Looting and pillaging of both private and public properties, including universities and factories.
- Raping of women, mainly in western and southern Tigray.
- Turning hitherto vibrant cities into ruinous rubble.