Fighting continues unabated in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, where the offensive launched by federal forces together with Eritrean forces, Amhara special forces and Fano militias is trying to bend the resistance of the military apparatus of Mekelle’s regional ruling party, the TPLF (https://www.garoweonline.com/en/world/africa/amid-peace-talks-fighting-reported-in-ethiopia-s-tigray-region).
The B30 and B20 arterial roads, which are two of the main road junctions in northern Tigray, have fallen under the control of federal forces and their allies, while a rapid advance is underway toward the branch of the B30 that runs south from Adwa towards Abiy Addi, in an attempt to isolate the TDF forces still present in the northwest of the region and make their mobility and supply difficult.
On October 24, in a pincer maneuver from the north and south, the entire B30 route came under federal control, with the fall of the main population centers of Inda Aba, Enda Ras, and Adi Gebru. Control of the B30 now allows mobility of units and supplies from the northern border with Eritrea to the Amhara regional state in the south. On the same day, the town of Dedebit, which was a focal point for support to TDF forces still present in the northwestern regions of Tigray, was captured by federal forces and Fano militias.
On October 22, federal forces managed to reach the city of Adwa, where, however, the situation still appears uncertain and evolving. Tigrayan TDF forces reportedly counterattacked from the northeast and northwest, and fighting is reportedly still ongoing. The main objective of Tigrinya forces at this time appears to be to prevent the advance of federal forces along the A2 highway junction cha from Adwa to Adrigat and northeastern Tigray.
On October 24, federal forces and their allies managed to push south of Adwa along the B30 road junction, capturing several towns until they lapped the town of Abiy Addi, where fighting was reported on several occasions. The advance along the road axes is strongly supported by intense action by Ethiopian air forces and, especially, Turkish-made Bayraktar TB2 drones, which have provided vital close air support to units on the ground (https://www.aspistrategist.org.au/turkish-drones-are-destroying-ethiopias-promise-of-peace/).
No major changes, however, have occurred over the past week in the northeastern quadrant of Tigray, except for a resumption of Eritrean artillery activity against the town of Adigrat. The action is interpreted by many as preparatory to launching an offensive toward the town, with the goal of reaching the A2 highway.
Also essentially unchanged is the situation in southern Tigray, where the front line remains settled around the town of Alamata, pushing east toward the borders of Afar and west toward those of Amahra.
While hard-to-verify information about violence and summary executions in multiple parts of the frontline and by all parties involved continues to surface on social media, the Ethiopian federal government has issued a statement condemning the proliferation of false information and unjustified accusations and announced a review of its relations with some states and organizations (https://www.aa.com.tr/en/africa/ethiopia-condemns-atrocities-allegations-against-its-govt/2723586).
Finally, talks sponsored by the African Union between the federal government of Ethiopia and the regional government of Tigray are still underway in South Africa, although little real progress seems to be made toward a cease-fire. The African Union’s Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa, former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo, along with former Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and former South African Vice President Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka are the initiators of this attempt at dialogue between the parties, made difficult, however, by the continuing clashes on the ground (https://www.theeastafrican.co.ke/tea/rest-of-africa/ethiopia-peace-talks-what-you-need-to-know-4000722).