Ethiopia accuses WHO chief Tedros of backing Tigray rebels

ADDIS ABABA/GENEVA (Reuters) – Ethiopia’s military accused the World Health Organization (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus on Thursday of supporting and trying to procure arms and diplomatic backing for Tigray state’s dominant political party, which is fighting federal forces.

“He himself is a member of that group and he is a criminal,” army chief of staff General Birhanu Jula said in a televised statement, before calling for him to be removed. Birhanu did not offer any evidence to support his accusations.

There was no immediate WHO comment on the allegation against Tedros, who is Ethiopian of Tigrayan ethnicity.

The accusations came at a time when the WHO is under considerable strain trying to coordinate global efforts against the COVID-19 pandemic after the United States, its biggest donor, froze funding over a spat involving China. Cases and deaths are rising again in many countries around the world.

Tedros served as Ethiopia’s health minister and foreign minister from 2005-2016 in a ruling coalition led by the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF). The TPLF effectively ruled Ethiopia for decades as the most powerful part of the coalition, until Prime Minister Ahmed Abiy took office in 2018.

Abiy has since folded the other three regional parties into his own national party, but the TPLF refused to join.

Birhanu accused Tedros of using his international platform to try to get diplomatic support and weapons for the TPLF.

“He has been doing everything to support them, he has campaigned to get the neighbouring countries to condemn the war. He has worked to facilitate weapons for them (the TPLF),” he said in a televised news conference.

“He tried to lobby people by using his international profile and mission to get support for the TPLF junta.”

Birhanu did not give further specifics.

2 thoughts on “Ethiopia accuses WHO chief Tedros of backing Tigray rebels

  1. WHO is part of the UN . Recently the UN suggested peace talks as also TPLF suggested peace talks. For this reason alone Dr. Teodros Ghebreyesus, the WHO director is on the clear. He is asking UN member counties to support what UN suggested, even though the current Ethiopian government did not accept the suggestion.

    I don’t know how Ethiopians see his actions but that is how the world sees it. Dr. Ghebreyesus in many occasions proven he is a world-class director of WHO, not an Ethiopian-class war monger as many Ethiopians claim he is or want him to be. If he was just an Ethiopian class war monger he would have went to Ethiopia and personally fought on the ground so unless he did that him standing by the side of UN suggested resolution does not make him an African tribal mercenary. For that matter people pointing your fingers at Dr. Ghebreyesus should check the track record of Dr. Abiy Ahmed himself and reach a conclusion for yourselves if Dr. Ahmed himself currently fits the ‘African tribal mercenary’ title..

  2. ኤምባሲያቾቻችንም በሙሰኛ አምባሳደሮች መበከላቸው ለትህነግ አላማ እገዛ ሆኖለታል።

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