At least 54 people from as many as three villages were murdered Sunday in a schoolyard by an armed rebel group in Ethiopia, a human rights group alleged, citing accounts from survivors who hid in a forest.
In a press release, Amnesty International claimed that the Oromo Liberation Army (OLA) was the suspect in the attack which took place in the Guliso District of West Wellega Zone. The human rights organization said that Ethiopian government forces had pulled out of the area the day before the attack.
“This senseless attack is the latest in a series of killings in the country in which members of ethnic minorities have been deliberately targeted. The fact that this horrendous incident occurred shortly after government troops abruptly withdrew from the area in unexplained circumstances raises questions that must be answered,” Deprose Muchena, the group’s regional director for East and Southern Africa, said.
The Ethiopian Human Rights Committee claimed in a release posted on Twitter that as many as 60 assailants took part in the attack.
“No amount of grievance can justify such brutality, and perpetrators should be held to account.” – @DanielBekele@EthioHRC unequivocally condemns the massacre of civilians in Wollega Zone’s Gawa-Kanka, Gilla-Gogola, and Seka-Jerbi kebeles. pic.twitter.com/XI5ZcYOmEP
— Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (@EthioHRC) November 2, 2020
“No amount of grievance can justify such brutality, and perpetrators should be held to account,” the group’s chief commissioner, Daniel Bekele, said.
In a Facebook post, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali said, “The government will use all available means to address the problem. Security forces were deployed in the area. They are taking action. The government will continue to work hard to ensure the safety of our people.”
በኢትዮጵያውያን ላይ እየተፈጸመ ባለው ማንነትን መሠረት ባደረገው ጥቃት እጅግ ማዘኔን እገልፃለሁ።
የኢትዮጵያ ጠላቶች፤ “ወይ እኛ እንገዛለን፤ ወይ ሀገር አትኖርም” ብለው ተነሥተዋል።…
The New York Times reported that despite the prime minister’s efforts to unite the country since coming to power in 2018, ethnic tensions have been simmering in the country.