What’s happening in Ethiopia? Here’s what the rebel advance toward Addis Ababa could mean.

Tigrayan women Tarik and Meresaeta, who fled the town of Samre due to the conflict, in Mekele, in the Tigray region of northern Ethiopia, on May 5. (Ben Curtis/AP)

The two main rebel groups fighting Ethiopia’s government made significant advances toward the capital this month, just as the current conflict there marked its one-year anniversary.

Thousands of opposition forces last week pushed to within 200 miles of Addis Ababa, where the embattled government of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has called on residents to fight what it says is “an existential war.”

Abiy this month also declared a state of emergency that gives the government broad powers to detain people suspected of supporting the rebels. Both sides appear to have dismissed the possibility of a peaceful solution and U.S. special envoy Jeffrey Feltman said last week that a cease-fire “doesn’t seem anywhere near.”

Still, Feltman and his African Union counterpart, Olesegun Obasanjo, made a last-ditch effort for a peaceful settlement in Addis Ababa this week.

Here is the latest on the Ethiopian conflict and what’s at stake.

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