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UK says killers in Ethiopia “must be held to account, whoever they may be” and responds to call that eye witness statements are taken from refugees from Tigray about reports of war crimes and crimes against humanity in that region.



Lord Alton of Liverpool – To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of reports that three senior members of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, including the former Ethiopian Foreign Minister, have been killed by the Ethiopian military on 13 January; and what representations they have made to the government of Ethiopia about those deaths.
[HL12132]
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon – We are aware of reports that senior members of the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, including the former Ethiopian Foreign Minister Seyoum Mesfin (who served as Foreign Minister 1991 to 2010), were killed on 13 January by Ethiopian Security Forces. Our Embassy in Addis Ababa continues to try and corroborate and verify reporting from the Tigray region but significant barriers remain, such as continued insecurity and limitations on communications in the region.
We have consistently underlined the overriding need to protect civilians and adhere to international law and international human rights law. We continue to call for independent, international, investigations into allegations of human right abuses and violations. We have been clear that perpetrators of those incidents that are proven must be held to account, whoever they may be. We will continue to make these points in upcoming conversations with the Government of Ethiopia.

Lord Alton of Liverpool – To ask Her Majesty’s Government what steps they are
taking to ensure that eye witness statements are taken from refugees from Tigray about reports of war crimes and crimes against humanity in that region; how they intend to preserve any such evidence; and what plans they have to put judicial mechanisms in place to bring those responsible to justice.
[HL12133]
Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon – Access to Tigray for Human Rights and humanitarian staff remains limited. We support the call made by the UN High Commission for Refugees for independent human rights monitors to be given access to Tigray to verify allegations that have been made against all parties to the conflict, and to help ensure accountability. We will continue to make this point in upcoming conversations with the Government of Ethiopia. We are also calling for unimpeded access for humanitarian organisations to reach those most directly affected by the fighting
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