Since the beginning of the conflict in Tigray, the possible involvement of Eritrea, the country bordering the Ethiopian province, has often been mentioned. But what do we know about the situation on the Eritrean front?
The Ethiopian army operates freely from Eritrean territory with the support of the authorities in Asmara. If nothing at this stage indicates that Eritrean troops are directly involved, the Ethiopian artillery, infantry and air force use Eritrea as a rear base. This is explained by Biniam Simon, the director of the independent station Radio Erena, the only reliable medium on Eritrean’s side.
Using local sources, Radio Erena explains, for example, that the city of Senafe in the west is under intermittent artillery from TPLF. At least three civilians are said to have been killed in the area on Sunday. The population has found refuge in the surrounding mountains, the radio says. And her hospital, she explains, is currently crowded with wounded Ethiopian soldiers in the front line.
If there is no direct source elsewhere at the border, Biniam Simon does not want to come forward. But in the capital Asmara, he explains, the three rockets fired by the TPLF last Saturday hit a very safe military sector near the international airport. An area called Godaif, which had already been a target during the 1998-2000 conflict. Finally, he explains that reservists from the Eritrean army over 50 years have been put on standby and made available to the government.