Djibouti is the latest country to appeal for a “peaceful settlement” to the conflict between Ethiopia’s central government and the Tigray regional leadership.
It follows a meeting between Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmeds special security adviser, Gedu Andargachew, and Djibouti’s President Ismail Omar Guelleh.
In a statement broadcast on state-owned TV, Djibouti’s Foreign Affairs Minister Mahmoud Ali Youssouf said the government was following the conflict with “great concern”.
Djibouti recognised Mr Abiy’s government as the “sole guarantor” of Ethiopia’s unity and territorial integrity, it added.
Landlocked Ethiopia uses Djibouti’s port for imports and exports, and the conflict in Ethiopia could negatively affect Djibouti’s economy.
Ethiopia has rejected mediation with the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), which Mr Abiy wants to dislodge from power in the northern Tigray region.
He said the military operation was launched after the TPLF violently took control of a huge military base in Tigray, and the conflict will end once TPLF officials are arrested and prosecuted.
The TPLF says its members have been “victimised” since Mr Abiy took office in 2018. It also accuses him of trying to impose a unitary system of government in Ethiopia.
Thousands have fled the conflict to neighbouring Sudan, which expects to receive close to 200,000 refugees.
On Monday, the leaders of Uganda and Kenya met Ethiopia’s Deputy Prime Minister Demeke Mekonnen and called for talks to end the conflict.