By Staff Reporter
November 3, 2020 (Ezega.com) -- The rebel Oromo Liberation Front known as ‘OLF Shene’ on Sunday night massacred at least 34 ethnic Amharas in Guliso district, Qanqa locality in western Ethiopia, the Oromia Police Commission has said.
Described as one of the most deadly massacres in Ethiopia’s history by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, the death toll from the attack is expected to surge as 11 people are missing.
Commissioner General Ararsa Merdassa on Tuesday told journalists that 34 people were killed in the attack and 11 others also went missing. A school and 50-60 houses were burned by the rebel group.
Families of the victims who escaped the massacre told ezega.com that the gunmen gathered ethnic Amhara residents and started shooting which lasted at least an hour.
The mass killings, which opposition forces have classified as genocide, were occurred shortly after members of the national defence force had left the area.
The Prosperity Party of Amhara has condemned the deadly and barbaric assaults and acts of terror on innocent and unarmed Amhara people.
This is the latest mass killing against ethnic Amharas in Ethiopia’s Oromia region since Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed took office in April 2018.
The gunmen used grenades and machine guns to massacre the innocent people and later burned their houses, according to eyewitnesses.
"They gathered us and said they wanted to hold a discussion with us." Suddenly, they started shooting at will. Even children and women were not spared, many were shot at close range," the man, who was not named, has told local media.
“Your fathers had killed our Oromo fathers and now it is time for you to die, the OLF Shene murderers had told the victims
As Africa’s second most populous nation battles unfolding ethnic deadly attacks, Ethiopians living in other parts of the country are expressing fear that similar attacks can spread.
The Oromia regional state in a statement said it would man hunt the perpetrators who massacred the innocent civilians. It blamed Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) for plotting with OLF to launch the targeted attack.
According to the statement, forces who stand contrary to the reform have continued to kill civilians despite the government's focus on development activities demanded by the people.
The Ethiopian Defense Force has been deployed at the locality for months due to the rebellion activities there. The attack by the Oromo Liberation Front happened about four hours after the withdrawal of the force from the area.
The victims had complained over the withdrawal of the national defence force from the area. “If you leave us, it is the same as killing us. Otherwise, take us with you” they were quoted as saying
Prime Minister Aby Ahmed expressed grief over latest identity-based attacks and death of people
“Enemies of Ethiopia are exerting their maximum efforts either to rule the country or ruin it. One of their goals is to bring despair to our people”, the Prime Minister added.
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