On November 4th, it appears that Ethiopia is on the brink of a war, as Ethiopia’s Nobel Peace Prize-winning prime minister Abiy Ahmed ordered the military to confront the country’s Tigray regional government after he accused it of carrying out a deadly attack on a military base, declaring “the last red line has been crossed” after months of alleged incitement.
The statement by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s office, and the reported overnight attack by the well-armed Tigray People’s Liberation Front, immediately raised concerns that one of Africa’s most populous and powerful countries could plunge back into war.
That would send a shock wave through one of the world’s most turbulent regions, the Horn of Africa. Ethiopia’s neighbors include Somalia and Sudan, and the prospect of spreading instability sent a chill down the spines of observers.
A report by the United States Institute of Peace said the fragmentation of Ethiopia “would be the largest state collapse in modern history, likely leading to mass interethnic and interreligious conflict … and a humanitarian and security crisis at the crossroads of Africa and the Middle East on a scale that would overshadow the existing conflicts in South Sudan, Sudan, Somalia, and Yemen.”WAR COMES TO ETHIOPIA AS NOBEL PEACE PRIZE-WINNING PRIME MINISTER SENDS TROOPS AGAINST REGIONAL GOVERNMENT