Ethiopian authorities in the capital, Addis Ababa have detained about sixteen (16) officials from the United Nations as relationship between the government and the world body grows sour by the day. According to reports, the arrest is linked to the ongoing conflict between Ethiopia and the Tigray rebels.
Recall that, earlier in September this year, the Ethiopian government expelled seven UN officials from the country after they were accused of “meddling” in internal affairs. Government officials have since blamed the UN of allegedly supporting the Tigray People’s Liberation Front which is currently at loggerheads with the Ethiopian government.
According to the authorities, the United Nations supplies food and other items to the Tigray region; although the government is yet to comment on the recent arrest, the move has been considered as one which is informed by the UN-Tigray relationship.
Commenting on the arrest, UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric, told reporters that, “we are, of course, actively working with the Government of Ethiopia to secure their immediate release.” In total, about sixteen officials were initially arrested; however, reports say six among them were released after interrogations.
In a recent development, authorities in Ethiopia have recruited new members into the national army in preparation towards a possible raid of the capital, Addis Ababa after several rebel groups forge together against the government.