The Eritrea People's Liberation Front (EPLF) has made tactical withdrawals following losses sustained by the other major Eritrean successionist group, the Eritrean Liberation Front (ELF).
SV: EPLF spokesman Andemicael Cahsi speaking (2 shots)
EPLF SPOKESMAN: "Well the Ethiopian military junta has....since the beginning of July 1978 have issued a new full-scale offensive in Eritrea employing over 150,000 forcefully recruited peasants and hundreds of tanks. The present Ethiopians offensive aims at the reconquests of major strategic posts in Eritrea and opening the road to Addis Ababa. In this offensive the Ethiopians have been able to reconquer certain strategic posts in the west like Tessenei and on the south Adi Ugri and Adikeih from the E.L.F. and in this situation the Eritrean Peoples Liberation Front has decided to adapt new tactics to the present situation to guarantee the continuation of the struggle and the revolution. And as such we have evacuated the town of Dekamhare (Decamere) lying on the strategic Asmara-Massawa road. In general there is no change in the balance of forces between the Ethiopian aggressors and our forces, in fact our forces have not entered, until now, into a direct confrontation with the Ethiopian aggressors. As far as the foreign forces being involved in the conflict are concerned....until now we have not witnessed the direct participation of foreign forces, Cubans or otherwise although its clear that behind to massive Ethiopian campaign in Eritrea there is a full backing of foreign forces particularly that of Soviet and Cuban forces.
The Ethiopian regime is now conducting saturated bombing on the liberated villages and towns in the countryside and this has caused an immense number of Eritreans to flee to the Sudan. In the fighting of the last two weeks, close to 15,000 Eritreans have flooded into the Sudan...already 300,000 refugees are staying in the Sudan and we have received reports of endemic diseases, especially cholera, spreading within these refugees due to the absence of assistance from humanitarian organisations and governments. And this situation is likely to be aggravated with intensification of the war."
The Eritrea Liberation Front operates mainly in the south and west of Eritrea and it is here that the Ethiopian forces have been concentrating their forces. In the past two weeks the ELF has lost three towns in fierce battles and the resulting pressure of EPLF forces (which until now have held a large area in the northern part of the province) has led to the withdrawals.
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Background: The Eritrea People's Liberation Front (EPLF) has made tactical withdrawals following losses sustained by the other major Eritrean successionist group, the Eritrean Liberation Front (ELF). The EPLF forces have pulled back from the town of Dekamhare (Decamere) 30 kilometres (20 miles) south of Asmara which is the capital of the strategic Red Sea province of Eritrea. In Rome on Thursday (3 August) a spokesman for the EPLF Mr. Andemicael Cahsi explained the reasons for withdrawing the forces.