US Embassy in Ethiopia "Strongly" Disagrees with Country's State of Emergency

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The television presenter said after reading a formal statement by the government that "at the end of a cabinet meeting today, the state of emergency has been declared from now".

Quoting an unnamed source "close to the government", the Addis Standard newspaper reported that the Council was debating whether to make the measure span three or six months.

The duration of the state of emergency was not specified during the evening state TV broadcast.

"The best way to ensure stability at this time is not to declare state of emergency that was tested and failed", Mohammed wrote on Facebook earlier on Friday.

In the latest twist in Ethiopia's current political dramas, Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn formally submitted his resignation from his position as the nation's premier and as chairman of the ruling EPRDF coalition.

Fegessa also revealed that the state of emergency would further extend its duration if the expected outcomes are not achieved. Several individuals have been murdered and thousands have been detained, including top restriction figures.

But anti-government sentiment remained in the two regions and the analysts believe Hailemariam's response to the protests eventually led to his resignation, a first in modern Ethiopia.

The Prime Minister said he is stepping down "to be part of the solution and for the success of the reforms and the solutions we have put in place".

In an effort to ease tensions, the government this week released more than 700 prisoners arrested during the protests and a previous state of emergency.

A state of emergency gives the federal government authority over all security forces, including local militias and regional police, said Ethiopia researcher Rene Lefort. "Otherwise, they would not discuss about the state of emergency".