Ethiopia: Parliament vote lifts state of emergency in conflict ridden north

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The parliament in Ethiopia has voted for an early end to a six-month state of emergency declared in November when rebellious Tigrayan forces had threatened to march on the capital.

The Parliament's decision on Tuesday morning came after the cabinet last month proposed cutting short the state of emergency in light of improving security conditions in the country.

After swift advances in November, most of the rebellious forces have since retreated back to their region, Tigray, and there are signs of a tentative thaw in relations between the warring sides.

Tuesday's vote was not a rubber stamp approval. Of the 312 lawmakers who attended the session, 63 opposed lifting the state of emergency, while 21 abstained from the vote.

It was not immediately clear whether the state of emergency would be lifted on Tuesday directly following parliament's vote.

Ethiopia’s war erupted in November 2020 and is believed to have caused the deaths of tens of thousands of people and the displacement of millions. Though the war has subsided in several places, notably within the Tigray and Amhara regions, concerns remain in the northeastern Afar region.

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