The announcement comes a day after nine rebel groups said they would join forces in an alliance built around the Tigray People's Liberation Front with an aim to "remove the regime".
US top envoy for Horn of Africa will hold two days of talks in Ethiopia, pushing for dialogue to end the Tigray war that has killed thousands of people and displaced millions since November 2020.
Washington is ending Addis Ababa's involvement in the African Growth and Opportunity Act due to "gross violations of internationally recognised human rights," US President Joe Biden said.
The announcement came after the Tigray rebels claimed to have captured several towns in recent days and said they were considering marching on capital Addis Ababa.
This is the seventh aerial bombardment by Ethiopian forces in the war-hit region this week.
"Some 18,600 children under the age of five in Tigray have been admitted for treatment for severe acute malnutrition from February to August this year compared to 8,900 in 2020, a 100% increase," says UN.
Ethiopia’s national army, alongside special forces of the northern Amhara region, launched a coordinated offensive early on Monday, says a Tigray People’s Liberation Front spokesperson.
The reports of a fresh offensive come despite mounting international criticism of the brutal near 11-month conflict in the north of the country.
Abiy's Prosperity Party scored a landslide win in June elections that federal officials touted as the high-water mark of democratic reforms he initiated upon taking office in 2018.
The seven UN officials have been declared "persona non grata" for "meddling in the internal affairs of the country,” the foreign ministry says in a statement published on its Facebook page.
Ethiopia isn’t a failed state, but it’s critically weak. Despite the aggravated state of near-survival and against the odds, Ethiopians have been resilient.
UN official says that a "de facto aid blockade" was exacerbating the humanitarian crisis in Tigray and that millions of people were on the brink of hunger.
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