Ethiopia: Tigray leader confirms bombing Eritrean capital

The leader of Ethiopia’s Tigray region said on Sunday his forces bombed the airport in Eritrea’s capital Asmara, marking a major escalation in a conflict and raising fears of a wider war in the Horn of Africa.

Tigray’s President Debretsion Gebremichael also said his forces have been fighting Eritrean forces “on several fronts” for the past few days. He did not specify where but did say Eritrean forces were deployed and fighting along Ethiopia’s border.

The leader of Ethiopia’s Tigray region said on Sunday his forces bombed the airport in Eritrea’s capital Asmara, marking a major escalation in a conflict and raising fears of a wider war in the Horn of Africa.

Tigray’s President Debretsion Gebremichael also said his forces have been fighting Eritrean forces “on several fronts” for the past few days. He did not specify where but did say Eritrean forces were deployed and fighting along Ethiopia’s border.

The TPLF, which once dominated Ethiopia’s ruling coalition, had previously accused Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed of enlisting military support from Eritrea.

Eritrea’s Foreign Minister Osman Saleh Mohammed denied sending troops to Ethiopia on Tuesday.

The fighting has killed hundreds of people on both sides, sent thousands of civilians fleeing into Sudan, and raised fears it could destabilise other parts of Ethiopia and the wider Horn of Africa region.

Several refugees arriving in the Sudanese border town of Hamdayat said their areas in Ethiopia had been shelled from Eritrea.

“We were shelled by artillery volleys from across the Eritrean border,” said Naksiam Guru, a 22-year refugee who lives near the border. “I saw people dying in the streets.”

Hamdayat is home to a camp hosting 8,000 refugees. Several hundred arrived on Saturday morning, some crossing a border river in boats, some swimming or wading through the water.

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