Dehai News

Nation.Africa: Ethiopia and Somalia deny Somali soldiers fighting in Tigray

Posted by: Berhane Habtemariam

Date: Friday, 22 January 2021

Ethiopians protests in SA

Ethiopians from the Tigray region protest outside the Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) in Pretoria, South Africa, on November 25, 2020.

Phill Magakoe | AFP

What you need to know:

  • Dina Mufti, spokesman of the Ethiopian Foreign Affairs Ministry, rejected the assertions, indicating his country never requested Somalia's support in the crackdown against the erstwhile ruling party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front.

Ethiopia has joined Somalia in refuting claims that Mogadishu sent troops to fight in the Tigray war under a secret plan.

Dina Mufti, spokesman of the Ethiopian Foreign Affairs Ministry, rejected the assertions, indicating his country never requested Somalia's support in the crackdown against the erstwhile ruling party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front.

Mufti was reacting to a January 18 letter by the chair of Somalia’s parliamentary Foreign Affairs committee, Abdulkadir Osoble Ali, requesting Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo to investigate complaints by families that their sons serving in the Somalia National Army (SNA) had gone missing while fighting in Ethiopia.

“We have seen reports about Eritrean troops that have crossed into Ethiopia,” Mufti said.

“We are also witnessing similar reports about Somali soldiers participating in the same campaign. Both of these claims are false and unfounded.”

"Nonsense"

Reports emerged this week that about 370 Somali soldiers who had been training in Eritrea were massacred in Ethiopia where they had been drafted to fight alongside Eritrean troops.

On Tuesday, Somalia’s Information Minister Osman Abukar Dubbe appeared on State-run Somali National Television (SNTV), telling the nation that no Somali forces were involved in the Tigray conflict in Ethiopia.

Dubbe insisted that reports indicating that 370 Somali soldiers were killed while fighting alongside Ethiopian forces in Tigray were fake and based on pure fabrication.

The minister said, “No Somali soldiers have been recruited by Ethiopia or deployed to participate in the fighting in the Tigray region.”

“It is just a rumour and it’s nonsense,” he added.

Mothers' voices

For almost a week, the independent media in Somalia have been releasing the voices of mothers claiming to have lost touch with their youths, reportedly sent to Eritrea for military training by the Federal Government of Somalia.

Similar complaints have gone viral through the social media.

Following days of street protests in parts of Galmudug State of Somalia, the State’s security minister, Mr Ahmed Moalim Fiqi, met on Wednesday with parents, mothers and fathers of the soldiers said to be missing in Galkayo town, 750 km north of Mogadishu.

Fiqi assured the parents that his Galmudug State government will address the issue by referring to relevant federal offices.

So far, the Federal Government has not explained the whereabouts of those men or even confirmed they were indeed serving in the SNA.      


Eri-TV: መልእኽቲ ሓድሽ ዓመት ፕረሲደንት ኢሳይያስ አፈወርቂ