Ethiopia is spiralling into civil war—and Israel has a chance to help

A destroyed armored vehicle in one of the main streets of Hawzen, in Tigray Region, on June 6, 2021. (Photo by Yan Boechat/VOA/Wikimedia Commons)

After years of relative stability and the election of a prime minister who won a Nobel Peace Prize in 2019, Ethiopia has been mired in domestic warfare since November 2020. Sparked by postponed elections and the COVID-19 pandemic, the war sees the Ethiopian government facing off against rural militias, separatist groups and a paramilitary organization slowly advancing across the entire country.

This leaves the nation’s remaining Jews trapped and scared. So advocates are looking to Israel for help evacuating the country’s Jewish populace, echoing Operation Moses from the 1980s and Operation Solomon from 1991, which brought thousands of Ethiopian Jews to the Holy Land.

One of those advocates is Yaffa Tegegne. The Montreal-based lawyer is the daughter of Baruch Tegegne, the famous activist who spearheaded the campaign to save Ethiopia’s Jews. Tegegne joins to discuss her parents’ legacy, the people he saved and what Canadians need to know about the Ethiopian Jews trapped in the current conflict.

What we talked about:


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