The UK and international allies have expressed concerns about reports of human rights abuses and violations of international law in Ethiopia’s conflict-hit region of Tigray.
A statement from the G7 – made up of the UK, US, Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the EU – called for an “independent, transparent and impartial” investigation into the reported crimes.
Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab and his counterparts urged parties involved in the conflict to provide “immediate, unhindered humanitarian access” as the group expressed concerns about “worsening food insecurity” for civilians.
The leaders also called for the “swift, unconditional and verifiable” withdrawal of Eritrean troops fighting alongside Ethiopia in the country’s northern region amid the conflict with the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF).
“We condemn the killing of civilians, sexual and gender based violence, indiscriminate shelling and the forced displacement of residents of Tigray and Eritrean refugees,” the statement released on Friday said.
“All parties must exercise utmost restraint, ensure the protection of civilians and respect human rights and international law.”
The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC) and the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) are due to conduct a joint investigation into human rights abuses committed by all parties.
The G7 noted this, adding: “It is essential that there is an independent, transparent and impartial investigation into the crimes reported and that those responsible for these human rights abuses are held to account.”