Eritrea has reportedly ordered reservists under the age of 55 to deploy immediately, according to reports Friday.
The country has faced accusations for more than a year of being involved t in Ethiopia’s war against Tigray rebels.
Eritrea is a country exercising a mandatory national service, occupying a huge strategic area of 1,000 kilometers (621 miles) of Red Sea coast.
Meanwhile, the UN chief’s spokesperson, Stephane Dujarric, said Friday that a cessation of hostilities between Tigray rebels and the federal government in Ethiopia is crucial.
“We are supporting the African-led efforts in discussions between the authorities in #Tigray and the Central Government in Addis. It is a matter of urgency to see a cessation of hostilities,” he tweeted.
A humanitarian truce in March was shattered Aug. 24 after a resumption of fighting between the government and the rebels on many fronts.
In hopes of finding a negotiated settlement, the African Union Commission renewed the mandate of former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo as Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa. Obasanjo has been trying to facilitate peace talks between the parties.
Newly-elected Kenyan President William Ruto appointed on Wednesday, his predecessor, Uhuru Kenyatta, as the country’s peace envoy to Ethiopia and the Great Lakes region.
Although the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (rebels) declared acceptance of AU mediation at the beginning of the week, its forces have not stopped fighting in the neighboring region of Amhara, where, according to credible military sources, fierce fighting has been taking place for days on several fronts.
“We are increasingly concerned by the growing military activity in northern Ethiopia. We strongly condemn the resumption of hostilities,” US State Department spokesperson Ned Price said Thursday.
The war between federal forces and Tigray rebels erupted in November 2020 after the TPLF, a party that ruled Ethiopia for 27 years until 2018 at the head of a four-party coalition, attacked federal army bases stationed across Tigray including in the regional capital of Mekele.