Somali state soldiers return home from Tigray
NAIROBI, Kenya - Dozens of Somali soldiers from Ogaden returned on over the weekend after a grueling battle with the Tigray Defense Forces [TDF] which has been embroiled in a conflict with the federal government of Ethiopia under the leadership of Abiy Ahmed.
The TDF, which controls most parts of Tigray, has been fighting against the Ethiopia National Defense Forces [ENDF] which stormed the region in November 2020. Even after making gains, ENDF decided to withdraw following international pressure.
However, TDF claimed the national army had been weakened as it ran riot to neighboring states of Amhara and Afar, leading to a national outcry for reinforcement. It's this situation that forced the regional army from the Somali region to join ENDF in the Tigray war.
However, the state's special forces contingent who were part of nationwide troops call-up returned home after concluding a decisive, limited, and objective military operation along with national defense forces against TDF.
According to reports, the Somali State special forces came home with zero casualties. Photos released by authorities in Jigjiga showed the soldiers getting a rousing reception as they hugged senior government officials.
The Somali region came out in protest against the TDF operation which is called "unnecessary". It's at this time the regional government decided to dispatch soldiers to several parts of Tigray where they faced TDF, which is still dominant in the state.
Reports indicate that the war between TDF and ENDF is far from over, even as Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed prepared to take an oath of office. His Prosperity Party scooped most seats in the Horn of Africa nation, which has struggled with instability for months now.
Ethiopia is facing the worst internal conflict in as many years, with the UN saying many people could succumb to hunger due to starvation. Currently, thousands of people have been displaced and others killed according to official reports.