Friday, May 21, 2021

Senate Resolution 97 passes unanimously.


Senate Resolution 97 passes unanimously.
That the Senate—

(1) calls for the immediate cessation of hostilities in the Tigray Region of Ethiopia;

(2) condemns in the strongest terms all violence against civilians;

(3) calls on the Government of Eritrea to immediately and fully withdraw its military forces from Ethiopia, and condemns in the strongest terms any human rights violations, murder, looting, rape, and other crimes committed by the Eritrean military or any other forces in the Tigray Region or elsewhere in Ethiopia;

(4) strongly disapproves of the escalation of political tensions between the Government of Ethiopia and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) into armed conflict;

(5) calls for the swift and complete restoration of electricity, banking, telephone, and internet services throughout the Tigray Region and other parts of Ethiopia where communications have been restricted;

(6) appreciates the willingness of Sudan to welcome refugees fleeing the conflict in the Tigray Region;

(7) urges the Government of Ethiopia to—

(A) take tangible steps toward improving humanitarian access in keeping with commitments made to the United Nations World Food Programme and Secretary of State Antony Blinken;

(B) pursue accountability for human rights abuses and atrocities; and

(C) make progress on other key issues with regard to the conflict in the Tigray Region and threats to regional stability following the visit of Senator Coons;

(8) calls on the Government of Ethiopia to—

(A) ensure that any apprehensions of TPLF members are carried out with the least possible use of force and that the rights to which those detained are entitled under Ethiopian and international law are fully respected;

(B) require the immediate and full withdrawal of Eritrean forces from Ethiopia;

(C) release all opposition leaders, supporters, and activists detained on the basis of their political activity and views as well as journalists detained on the basis of their reporting, and respect the rights of all Ethiopians to free expression and political participation, without discrimination based on ethnicity, ideology, or political affiliation; and

(D) convene a credible and countrywide process of national dialogue and reconciliation inclusive of all nonviolent political parties, ethnic communities, religious groups, and civil society organizations in Ethiopia to work toward the sustainable resolution of grievances and chart a democratic and peaceful path forward for the country;

(9) urges all parties to the conflict to—

(A) cease all hostilities, commit to a political solution for resolving existing differences, fully comply with international humanitarian law, and refrain from actions that could continue, spread, or escalate the conflict, particularly attacks on civilian targets;

(B) make demonstrable progress to guarantee unfettered and immediate humanitarian access, for personnel and supplies, to areas affected by the conflict, and take all possible steps to protect the safety of civilians, including refugees, displaced persons, and humanitarian aid workers; and

(C) allow for, and cooperate with, independent and transparent investigations of any alleged human rights abuses committed in the course of the conflict in the Tigray Region and other conflicts across Ethiopia, and hold perpetrators to account in a credible process; and

(10) urges the Secretary of State, the Secretary of the Treasury, and the Administrator of the United States Agency for International Development, in coordination with the heads of other relevant Federal departments and agencies, to—

(A) engage at the highest levels with leaders of the Government of Ethiopia, the Government of Eritrea, and the TPLF to encourage the full cessation of hostilities and the withdrawal of Eritrean forces, mitigate the humanitarian crisis that has emerged from the conflict, and support an inclusive process of national dialogue and reconciliation;

(B) immediately establish criteria to end the pause of all non-life-sustaining assistance to Ethiopia and support programs to meet immediate humanitarian needs, including of refugees and internally displaced persons, advance nonviolent conflict resolution and reconciliation throughout the country, and aid a democratic transition in Ethiopia;

(C) take continued actions to ensure that a “full, independent, international investigation into all reports of human rights violations, abuses, and atrocities” committed in the course of the conflict as called for by Secretary of State Blinken on February 27, 2021, is conducted, and impose strict accountability measures on those found responsible;

(D) use all diplomatic, developmental, and legal tools to prevent further ethnic-based violence and mass atrocities, including by non-state armed groups, and promote competitive multi-party democracy in Ethiopia; and

(E) maintain close coordination with international allies and multilateral organizations regarding efforts to address the conflict in the Tigray Region and other regions of Ethiopia and bring attention to the conflict in international fora, including the United Nations Security Council.

Amend the title so as to read: “A resolution calling on the Government of Ethiopia, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, and other belligerents in the conflict in the Tigray Region of Ethiopia to cease all hostilities, protect human rights, allow unfettered humanitarian access, and cooperate with independent investigations of credible atrocity allegations.”.

TMH NEWS 05-20-2021