U.S. Senator Chris Coons is one of Congress’s leading voices shaping U.S. policy on Africa. For many years he was the top Democrat in the Senate Sub-committee on Africa and earlier this year, President Biden tapped Senator Coons to be his special envoy to Ethiopia. (There is now a full time envoy for the Horn of Africa, Jeffrey Feltman)
I caught up with Senator Coons in person at the Halifax International Security Forum, not long after governments around the world advised their citizens to leave Addis Ababa, ahead of a possible battle for control of Ethiopia’s capital.
Along with fellow journalist Robbie Gramer of Foreign Policy, we asked Senator Coons to explain U.S. policy towards the Ethiopian conflict, including whether or not the time was right to impose sanctions on government and rebel leaders.