Hundreds killed in ethnic conflict – witnesses — Analysis

A deadly attack on civilians in Ethiopia’s Oromia region was reportedly one of the worst recent instances of violence

A surge of ethnic violence in Ethiopia last week, resulted in the killing of at least 200 civilians in the country’s Oromia region. Although the central government of Addis Ababa did not confirm these reports immediately, it acknowledged that there were attacks against innocent persons.

“I have counted 230 bodies. I am afraid this is the deadliest attack against civilians we have seen in our lifetime,”Abdul-Seid Tahir was a Gimbi County resident, according to the Associated Press.

According to reports, the attacks targeted Amhara ethnic group which is one of the most populous in Africa. The Oromo Liberation Army, an Oromo armed group seeking to self-determination for its people, is claimed by witnesses. According to them, the militants were reacting against the Amhara after a string of defeats against the government forces.

They denied all allegations and claimed that they were not true. “regime and local militia”These were the perpetrators of atrocities. “Our fighters had not even reached that area when the attacks took place,”They agreed.

Abiy Ahmed Ali, Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, expressed his outrage at the incident “attacks on innocent civilians and the destruction of livelihoods by illegal and irregular forces”. He blamed the Twitter account for his actions. “elements whose main objective is to terrorize communities”For the violence.

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The government-appointed Ethiopian Human Rights Commission also confirmed on Sunday that the video circulated on social media on Friday shows extrajudicial executions by government forces. According to the organization, at least 30 individuals were killed during the December 2021 incident.

Ethiopia’s federal government considers OLA a terrorist organisation and calls them OLF-Shene. This is the same name that was used by the Commission. Commenting on the surge of violence in the region, it called on the federal government to find a “Lasting solution” for the crisis.

As part of a government sponsored resettlement programme, three decades ago the Amhara arrived in large numbers in Oromia. They are asking for help to leave the region in the wake of these attacks.

“The government has said they are listening, but no action has been taken. Once again, this kind of killing has become the norm,”Samuel Getachew, a journalist based in Addis Ababa spoke out about the current situation during an interview with Al Jazeera. According to him, it was difficult for journalists to cover the events in Oromia because of restrictions placed by government.

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