The United Nations (UN) has recalled a second senior figure from its operations in Ethiopia over controversial remarks about the war in the country’s north, in a move that could deepen already troubled relations with the government in Addis Ababa.
The UN’s population fund head, Dennia Gayle, is the second top official to be recalled this week.
She follows the international body’s migration chief, Maureen Achieng, who was put on administrative leave.
It is after both women complained about figures within the UN who they said were sympathetic towards rebel forces in Tigray in a leaked audio clip.
The UN migration office in Ethiopia has told the BBC that Ms Achieng “shared personal opinions that were not reflective” of their values.
In an interview with a pro-government writer the two women accused recent emergency coordinators sent by the UN of side-lining their office in Ethiopia and suggested there is a power struggle within the international body.
The Ethiopian government has a fraught relationship with aid agencies including the UN which accused it of blocking aid to Tigray.
Last week, seven UN officials were expelled by the government after it said they meddled in its internal affairs.
However, UN Secretary General Antònio Guterres rejected the accusations saying he had not seen any evidence for them.