In Ethiopia, Government and Tigrayan forces have established a telephone hotline to help maintain a ceasefire struck last week, having met in Kenya on Monday for a new round of talks on implementing the truce.
The government as well as regional forces from Tigray agreed last Wednesday to cease hostilities after talks mediated by the African Union, a diplomatic breakthrough two years into a war that has killed thousands and displaced millions.
The truce has raised hopes humanitarian aid can start moving back into a region where hundreds of thousands face famine.
Representatives of Ethiopia’s military and government and forces from Tigray are in the Kenyan capital Nairobi to discuss how to begin implementing the ceasefire, with the talks set to last three or four days.
According to an official familiar with the talks, the hotline will address any flare-up in fighting and coordinate disengagements, with both sides recognising “the challenge of fully communicating with all their units to stop fighting”.
Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s national security adviser and lead negotiator, Redwan Hussien, said on Twitter that the Nairobi meetings would ensure “safety & expedites humanitarian flow to areas hitherto inaccessible”.
Getachew Reda, spokesman for the Tigray authorities, said earlier on Monday that they would honour their commitments.
He said later on Twitter: “Peace is what our people need more than anything. Whether we will deliver on our promise in a manner that satisfies our people, time will tell.