Tigray rebels retake Ethiopian world heritage Lalibela

Tags: International News

Tigray rebels on 12th December recaptured the north Ethiopian town of Lalibela, home to a UNESCO world heritage site from the  Ethiopian government  forces..

Ethiopian Civil War

The conflict started on 4 November, when the  Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed ordered a military offensive against  the northern regional forces in Tigray.

The escalation came after months of feuding between Mr Abiy's government and leaders of Tigray's dominant political party, the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF) .

For almost three decades, the party was at the centre of power, before it was sidelined by Mr Abiy, who took office in 2018 after anti-government protests.

Mr Abiy pursued reforms, but when Tigray resisted, the political crisis erupted into war.


Lalibela is a town in the Amhara Region of Ethiopia. It is famous for its rock-cut monolithic churches. It is a holy pilgrimage site for Christians.  The Rock-Hewn Churches were declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1978

Ethiopia (Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia) - 

  • A landlocked country in the horn of Africa. 
  • Capital - Addis Ababa
  • Currency - Birr
  • Lake Tana in the North is the source of Blue Nile

Abiy Ahmed - He is the present prime minister of Ethiopia. As the first Ethiopian and the first African head of state, he won the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize for his work in ending the 20-year post-war territorial stalemate between Ethiopia and Eritrea.

Horn of Africa

  • The Horn of Africa takes its name from the horn-shaped land formation that forms the easternmost point of the African continent, projecting into the Indian Ocean south of the Arabian Peninsula. 
  • The term is also used to refer to the greater region of adjacent countries located at the southern end of the Red Sea and on the Gulf of Aden: the Sudan, Eritrea, Djibouti, Somalia and the landlocked Ethiopia.
  • Located on the main shipping route for the transport of oil from the Persian Gulf to Europe and the United States, the Horn of Africa is considered one of the most strategically important regions in the world.

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