Ethiopia declared the state of emergency in November after forces from the northern region of Tigray said they had gained territory and were considering marching on the capital Addis Ababa.

Ethiopian government said last month the army was clearing the Tigrayan forces from the northern Amhara and Afar regions.
Ethiopian government said last month the army was clearing the Tigrayan forces from the northern Amhara and Afar regions. (AP)

Ethiopia's cabinet has approved the lifting of a six-month state of emergency ahead of its expiration in light of changing security conditions in the country.

"Now we have reached a stage where threats can be neutralised through regular law enforcement mechanisms," the statement from the prime minister's office said on Wednesday.

The cabinet's decision was sent to parliament for its approval.

Ethiopia declared the state of emergency in November after forces from the northern region of Tigray said they had gained territory and were considering marching on the capital Addis Ababa.

The government said last month the army was clearing the Tigrayan forces from the northern Amhara and Afar regions, dismissing Tigrayan statements that their forces were retreating voluntarily to create an "opening for peace".

READ MORE: Ethiopia declares nationwide state of emergency

Millions displaced

Over the weekend, the military said it was planning to enter the Tigray regional capital of Mekelle and "eliminate" the rebellious forces.

That statement came amid diplomatic efforts to end conflict that broke out in November 2020 and has displaced millions and triggered widespread hunger.

Witnesses, lawyers and human rights groups have said that thousands of ethnic Tigrayans were held under the state of emergency’s sweeping powers of detention. 

An unknown number have been released after the shift in the war late last month.

Ethiopia’s government has sought to restrict reporting on the conflict and detained some journalists.

READ MORE: UN: Ethiopian government arrests at least 1,000 under state of emergency

Source: TRTWorld and agencies