The increasing Atrocities and Killings of Innocent Amhara Civilians – Yet the Little is spoken

The increasing Atrocities and Killings of Innocent Amhara Civilians – Yet the Little is spoken

By Abel Eshetu Gebremedhin (PhD Candidate, AAU)

As the world is focused on Russia-Ukraine war, a grave genocide is taking place in Ethiopia. Increasing atrocities and mass killings aimed at ethnic Amharas have been occurring since Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed took power. Thousands of innocent civilians, many of them women and children, were killed in different parts of Ethiopia. The diplomatic community and media did not give the required level of attention for not openly expressed reason. A little is spoken about by some international vocals though it is yet to be disclosed in full and details. Summary of the few is presented below.

Human Rights Watch in the 2022 events report stated that  “On June 18, heavily armed gunmen killed about 400 Amhara civilians, many women and children and destroyed homes and businesses in villages in West Wellega Zone, in Oromia, and in neighboring Benishangul-Gumuz region. Two weeks later, on July 4, assailants attacked Amhara civilians in Kellem Wellega Zone in Oromia, killing scores”

According to Tamil Guardian reported on June 21, 2022 “More than 250 people mostly from the Amhara ethnic group, have been killed in an attack in the Oromia region of Ethiopia on Saturday.”

On June 19, 2022, the New York times reported that “at least 230 Amhara ethnic group were killed when members of the Oromo Liberation Army attacked Tole, a village in Oromia, Ethiopia’s largest region” 

VoA Africa (June 20, 2022) reported that “Hundreds of people belonging to the Amhara ethnic group were killed by rebels in Ethiopia’s Oromia region over the weekend, survivors said Monday, but the insurgents denied the claims, blaming government forces for the deaths.”

International Crisis Group (Oct 26, 2021) reported that “As the conflict expands, the costs are set to climb. The mid-2021 fighting has already displaced at least 450,000 people in Afar and Amhara, in addition to the nearly two million who were driven from their homes in Tigray. According to some reports, Tigray forces have also looted aid warehouses, shelled residential areas and killed civilians in neighboring regions.”

New York Times (July 6, 2022 ) reported that “the Oromo Liberation Army committed another massacre this week was backed up by the state-appointed Ethiopian Human Rights Commission, which said that the militant group had killed ethnic Amhara civilians in two villages in the Qellem Wollega area, about 370 miles west of the capital, Addis Ababa.— Neither Mr. Abiy nor the commission provided a death toll, but Hone Mandefro, advocacy director for the Amhara Association of America, said that more than 300 people had been killed, with 120 buried on Tuesday in one of the villages. Dozens more were abducted during the attack, he said, and their whereabouts remain unknown.”

On July 21, 2022, Amnesty International said that “Hundreds of people were killed, and scores injured in an attack that survivors and victims’ family members say was committed by the Oromo Liberation Army (OLA). Amnesty International’s Director for East and Southern Africa added that “These horrific killings in Tole, allegedly at the hands of the Oromo Liberation Army, reveal its perpetrators’ utter disregard for human life. This callous massacre, which also saw women and children lose their lives, must be independently and effectively investigated”. Same incidence was reported by The Guardian as “ more than 200 ethnic Amhara have been killed in an attack in the country’s Oromia region and are blaming a rebel group, which denies it.It is one of the deadliest such attacks in recent memory as ethnic tensions continue in Africa’s second most populous country”. 

The killings of Innocent Amahara people started since the inducement of ethnic federalism and EPRDF’s divide and rule political ideology that blackmail Amhara as the oppressor of ethnic groups. The current regime -the Oromo Prosperity Party led government should be held accountable for not protecting the innocent people from the repeated attack.

Filed in: Articles & Opinions