Some 15 Ethiopian peacekeepers in South Sudan, originally from the Tigray region, refused to return to Ethiopia on Monday, said UN spokesman Stephan Dujarric.
A contingent of 169 Ethiopian soldiers was due to rotate out of South Sudan.
“We’re trying to get the details, but I do understand about 15 members of the contingent chose not to board the flight at the Juba airport… They’ve asked to stay,” said Dujarric at a media briefing.
Conflict broke out in Tigray in early November 2020 following the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) seizing federal military bases in the region after a breakdown in relations with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government.
Thousands of people are reported to have been killed, and about two million have been internally displaced.