A Nobel Prize-winning civil rights leader is now leading Ethiopia’s military

Ethiopia’s Nobel Peace Prize-winning civil rights activist and Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed announced on Wednesday that he will leave “temporarily” to lead the Ethiopian military on the front lines as they fight rebels.

Mr. Ahmed’s government responded to the 2014 secession of the Ogaden region by deploying the military to ethnic areas in search of fugitives, including pirates who had kidnapped foreign aid workers. Abiy said that the rebels have a “cruel agenda to corrupt people, to scare people, to enslave them, to lay hands on children,” referring to anti-government militants. He said that while he will leave the fighting in the Ogaden region, he plans to lead troops into other conflicts.

On social media, many Ethiopians applauded the decision. One Instagram user posted that “this is the most brave and honest leader we can ever have.” Another said: “I am extremely proud that our Prime Minister has decided to lead soldiers for the defense of his country.”

My heart full of love for what you’re doing🙏🏽❤️❤️🙏🏽❤️🙏🏽❤️🙏🏽❤️#انتحمد#时ريا_3000🔮✊🏾✊🏾 pic.twitter.com/i0gPUpCqyL — Abdi Hana (@Soba_Wewe) December 12, 2018

JUST IN: @JustinTrudeau led the voice of support for Ethiopia with the delegation that received @EthiopiaPM yesterday: “I congratulate the government and the Prime Minister of Ethiopia on his leadership on the very complex issues that are involved here”. pic.twitter.com/9ANnSiVOuK — Sarah Wilkinson (@swilkinsonbc) December 12, 2018

My congrats to @EthiopiaPM on leading Ethiopia’s military towards war in another war on behalf of the nation, arguably in front of the World. This is one way of showing the world your “openness”. #Gomremufenye😊🇰🇰#NobelPrize — ig[expletive]marya] (@aniitzgodeng2) December 12, 2018

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