Ethiopia’s Tigray rebels accept AU call for talks

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Tigrayan rebels confirmed they would take part after the Addis Ababa government confirmed its participation earlier on Wednesday.

Both sides in the two-year long civil war in northern Ethiopia have now agreed to attend peace talks this weekend in South Africa following an invitation by the African Union.

The Tigray rebels have however raised some questions about the invited participants, observers, guarantors and the role of the international community.

“Considering we were not consulted prior to the issuance of this invitation, we need clarification to some of the following issues to establish an auspicious start for the peace talks,” said a statement signed by Tigrayan leader Debretsion Gebremichael.

Fighting in Tigray state resumed in August, breaking a five-month humanitarian truce.

The upsurge has also brought in troops from neighbouring Eritrea, who are backing the Ethiopian government army.

The talks will include as mediators former presidents of Nigeria and Kenya, Olusegun Obasanjo and Uhuru Kenyatta.