ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – Ethiopia said on Thursday it was bearing down on the capital of Tigray region in a two-week-old war, and tore into the World Health Organization (WHO) head with accusations of diplomatic lobbying for the rebels.
The conflict has killed hundreds, sent 30,000 refugees into Sudan, and called into question whether Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed – Africa’s youngest leader and last year’s Nobel Peace Prize winner – can hold his ethnically-divided nation together.
A federal government air strike injured many university students on Thursday in the Tigray capital of Mekelle, a bastion of the regional ruling Tigray People’s Liberation Front, TPLF forces said in a Facebook post.
The attack took place around 12:45 pm (0945 GMT), the post said, in the Meles Academy University, where “it resulted in heavy casualties of many university students and other civilians.” The Facebook message was accompanied by several photos that appeared to show adults with injuries in Mekelle.
Reuters was unable to authenticate the photos or the information; assertions by all sides have been impossible to verify because internet and phone connections to Tigray have been suspended and the government has restricted access.