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Somalia rejects UN’s plan to probe Ethiopia conflict abuses

GENEVA (SD) – Somalia has joined 14 other countries in a vote against a proposal to probe atrocities committed by Ethiopian military and Tigray forces sides in the over a year old fighting months after UN accused the horn of African nation of sending troops to Ethiopia’s Tigray conflict.

A resolution  seeking to establish an international Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia, to be appointed by the President of the Human Rights Council was tabled before a special session at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva.

 15 members of the 45 members including Somalia, Eritrea, India and Russia voted against the call, endorsing Ethiopia’s argument that there had been a previous investigation that called for accountability, which the Ethiopian government was willing to implement.

21 others endorsed the resolution while 11 others abstained.

China also filed an opposition to the resolution which however received the backing of more than a third of the required number for a resolution to be adopted.

Beijing argued Ethiopia had shown willingness to handle what it called an internal issue. 

China has in the past refused accusations by the Council of violations in Xinjiang, where its controversial counter-terrorism programme has elicited criticism.

 Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Ivory Coast, Gabon, Libya, Namibia from Africa also rejected the resolution but Senegal, Sudan, Malawi and Togo abstained.

After the vote, Ethiopia said it will reject the creation of the team. 

Somalia and Eritrea were previously accused of sending troops to fight alongside Ethiopia’s military against Tigray forces.

According to a UN Special Rapporteur report in June this year,  Somali military recruits who were undergoing military training in Eritrea were spotted in northern Ethiopia where TPLF had been fighting with the government forces.

“The Special Rapporteur also received information and reports that Somali soldiers were moved from military training camps in Eritrea to the front line in Tigray, where they accompanied Eritrean troops as they crossed the Ethiopian border,” the report read in part. The Somalin trainees were also present in the historic city of Aksum, the report noted

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