AU envoys for Tigray crisis include former SA president


The African Union (AU) appointment of three high-level envoys, one a South African, to help resolve conflict in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, is an “initiative for peace” according to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

The envoys are Joaquim Chissano, former President of Mozambique; Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf former Liberian President and Kgalema Motlanthe, former President of South Africa.

They were appointed on Friday by AU chair, President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa.

Welcoming the decision, Guterres underlined UN support for efforts to ensuring a peaceful, stable and prosperous Ethiopia, according to a statement.

“He commends the African Union chair, President Cyril Ramaphosa of South Africa, for this initiative and extends the full support of the UN. He also expresses his appreciation to Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed of Ethiopia for facilitating this initiative for peace,” the statement said.

More than 30 000 people fled the Tigray region in northern Ethiopia, for Sudan in the past two weeks to escape fighting between national and regional forces.

UN estimates are up to 200 000 could arrive in the coming months.