Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2019 for ending the two-decade “state of war” between Ethiopia and Eritrea, with many hailing a new era of peace in the region. Just one year later, Ahmed’s military has displaced tens of thousands of civilians in an ongoing military campaign in the northern Tigray region. Thousands have died since Ethiopia declared war on the Tigray People’s Liberation Front in early November, and at least one massacre has been reported. Ethiopia has admitted federal troops fired at and detained U.N. workers in the northern Tigray region for attempting to enter areas they say are forbidden. Awol Allo, associate professor at the Keele University School of Law in the United Kingdom, was among those who nominated Ahmed for the Nobel Peace Prize, but he now says the prime minister has dashed hopes for peace in the region. “Ethiopia over the course of the last two years moved from a moment of a very high degree of hope and optimism, a vision of transformation, into a total civil war that threatened to destabilize not only the country but also the broader Horn of Africa region,” he says.
This post was originally published on Radio Free.