MEKELLE: Ethiopian Airlines will on Wednesday December 28 resume its flights to Mekelle after 18 months.
Flights to Mekelle were suspended on June 28, 2021 after Tigray forces took control of much of Tigray, including the capital Mekelle.
Ethiopian Airlines Group CEO Mesfin Tasew said the resumption of the flights will enable families to reunite, facilitate the restoration of commercial activities, stimulate tourist flow and bring more opportunities.
“We are ready to serve our passengers who are traveling on the route between Addis Ababa and Mekelle and play our part in the socio-economic development of our country,” Tasew said.
This follows peace talks between the federal government and Tigray leaders following the war that started in November 2021.
The mediators, who met peace negotiators in Nairobi last week, expressed confidence in normalcy returning to the Tigray region and peace in Ethiopia.
The two sides, the Ethiopian military leadership and representatives of the rebel Tigray People’s Liberation Front, agreed to establish a joint monitoring team to oversee the peace agreement signed in November.
In this regard, Kenya’s former president Uhuru Kenyatta, will travel to Tigray to oversee monitoring of last month’s peace deal.
This is after Ethiopian federal and Tigray region officials agreed last Thursday in Nairobi to grant the AU full access to the region to oversee an end to the two-year conflict
With planned daily flights to Mekelle, the airline said it will increase the daily frequency depending on the demand on the route.
“Ethiopian currently operates to a total of 20 domestic destinations currently and plans to increase this number in the coming years. Passengers can contact our Global Call Center or the nearest Ethiopian Ticket Office for more information or booking their flights,” the airline said.
Other critical services such as communication are expected to resume, and National Security Adviser to the Prime Minister Redwan Hussien said Ethiotelecom is expected to make such an announcement.
Earlier on December 26, a delegation led by House of Peoples Representatives Speaker Tagesse Chafo left for Tigray, to oversee the implementation of cessation of hostilities agreement.
Redwan said the handing over of heavy weapons and resumption of Constitutional duty of ENDF in Mekele is expected to be executed until Thursday as per the understanding reached in Nairobi.