Deadly Disputes Leaves At Least 27 People Dead in Eastern Ethiopia

By Staff Reporter

Afar-Somali-border-EthiopiaOctober 29, 2020 ( -- Deadly disputes between ethnic Afar and Somali peoples in eastern Ethiopia have left at least 27 people dead and several others wounded, officials from the Somali regional state have said.

The disputes occurred along their common border areas between Monday to Wednesday and at least 27 civilians were killed, the regional government said in a statement.

Somali Issa tribe representative Mohammed Mussie told DW Amharic service that additional two individuals were killed by unidentified gunmen while funeral ceremonies for the dead were taking place.

Currently members of the federal security forces are deployed in the area while investigation is underway about the causes of the disputes, casualties and property damage.

More than 100 people have been killed over the past two years in ethnic conflicts and perpetrators have remained at large while both the regional and federal governments have been indifferent in finding lasting solutions to the recurrent disputes.

The Somali regional government said it is providing the necessary support to the victims in partnership with the federal government.

The Afar Region Communications Bureau head Ahmed Kaloita told DW Amharic service that ten civilians were killed last Tuesday night in Serkemo and Tele localities in Gelealo district of the region by unidentified gunmen.

According to the head, two employees of the Ethiopian Ministry of Education who went to Gedamaitu town of the region to witness the official reopening of classes for grade eight students were gunned down last Monday.

Ahmed said eight Afari people including children and women were killed on Wednesday in similar terrorist attacks.

Meanwhile, the National Movement of Amhara (NAMA) said government security forces have detained several of its members who took part in the demonstrations that were held on Tuesday in some towns of Amhara region.

NAMA in a statement said the government security forces harassed and in some cases detained demonstrators who protested the targeted killings of ethnic Amaras in Oromia, Benishangul Gumuz and South Nations Nationalities People (SNNP) regions.

NAMA’s statement said the people of Amhara have been denied democratic and human rights during the Abiy’s led government on top exclusions from the country’s political structure and economic benefits during the previous regime.

It called for immediate release of its members and supporters without any pre-conditions. The government on its part said it banned the demonstrations in order to turn away planned security attacks.

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