Ethiopian prime minister Dr. Abiy press conference

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today a press conference organized its first charter flight to evacuate 141 third country nationals (TCNs) from Sana’a, Yemen. “The operation was a success and paves the way for continuing the evacuations of more than 16,000 third country nationals who are stranded in Yemen”, IOM said, adding it has received requests from 38 countries to evacuate their nationals out of Yemen “The first flight required multiple and complex approvals and logistical arrangements. This followed more than a week of efforts coordinating the participation of several governments in the region, which facilitated and allowed the flight clearance and departure on Sunday from Sana’a to Khartoum in Sudan.” Saba Malme, Operations Coordinator for IOM Yemen, reported Sunday that some of the evacuees leaving on this initial flight had been waiting for several days at the airport in Sanaa. “Hopefully we’ll be a little more organized tomorrow, when we do our next flight,” Malme said. He explained that about two dozen TCNs whose names had been cleared for evacuation failed to arrive at the airport. “We tried to contact them, without success,” he said. The IOM chartered plane that left Sana’a on Sunday landed in Khartoum, Sudan, shortly after 3:00 pm local time. The passenger roster included nationals from Sudan, Ethiopia, USA, several Europeans, Nigeria, the Republic of Korea, Syria, Iraq and Indonesia. “With this launching of the humanitarian bridge between Sana’a and Khartoum, the Sudanese government has helped IOM in a very complicated humanitarian operation,” said Mario Lito Malanca, IOM’s Sudan Chief of Mission. “IOM will continue to work with Sudan to address the needs of all migrants impacted by the conflict in Yemen.” IOM has been inundated with calls from migrants, private citizens and family members of people believed to be stranded in Yemen. IOM has identified about 16,000 persons who urgently need international travel assistance, of whom some 5,000 are believed to be ready to travel immediately. Additionally, 38 different governments have reached IOM to discuss evacuating their nationals from Yemen.

Spokesperson for the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights has in a press briefing called for a probe into the latest clash between the Ethiopian security forces and anti-government protesters. According to Ravina Shamdasani’s statement issued on Tuesday January 23, 2018; the Amhara regional state government should ensure that its promised probe into the matter is “prompt, independent, impartial and effective.” Seven people were killed when security forces discharged live bullets on festival goers who were taking part in the Ethiopian Orthodox Church’s Epiphany celebrations over the weekend. displayAdvert("mpu_3") We urge for this to be a prompt, independent, impartial and effective investigation to ensure those responsible for any violations are held accountable. The statement said the Woldiya incident happened “when the security forces tried to stop people from chanting anti-government songs and allegedly opened fire on them. Protesters reportedly later blocked roads and destroyed a number of properties.” The spokesperson added that body’s regional office in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa had collected information from several sources, including local media, trusted civil society sources and official statements. Reuters said the government spokesman Negeri Lencho, reacting to Shamdasani’s statement, told journalists on Tuesday that demands by the
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