Ethiopian rebel group announces unilateral temporary ceasefire

ADDIS ABABA – The Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF), a rebel group operating in the Ethiopia Somali regional state, on Sunday announced a unilateral temporary ceasefire.

In a press statement, the ONLF said its move is to lay the groundwork for talks and peaceful negotiations to find a lasting solution to the grievances in the region.

“Emphasizing the urgent need to foster a climate of peace that can assist the ONLF, the Ethiopian government and other stakeholders in resolving the longstanding conflict in the Ethiopia Somali regional state, the ONLF declares a unilateral ceasefire from Sunday,” the statement said.

“The ONLF will cease all military and security operations against the Ethiopian security apparatus until a negotiated comprehensive cessation of hostilities is reached with the Ethiopian government.” the statement added.

The ONLF made international headlines on April 24, 2007, when it launched a deadly raid on an oil field in Ethiopia Somali regional state. The attack left 65 Ethiopians dead.

After the attack, the Ethiopian government undertook a vigorous counterinsurgency campaign.

It also undertook large scale infrastructure projects to win the hearts of local population who were thought to be sympathetic to the ONLF.