Human Rights & Public Liberties

Human Rights & Public Liberties

Published on: 13 Jan, 2021

Protests and turmoil in Ethiopian capital amid fear of rebel advance

Published on: 8 November, 2021


Protesters in Addis Ababa[Al Jazeera]

Protesters in Addis Ababa[Al Jazeera]

On Sunday tens of thousands of Ethiopians rallied in the capital Addis Ababa in support of the government in its war against rebellious northern forces.

The US is one of the powers that has called for a ceasefire to the year-long war. Some of the protesters protested against US interventions in the conflict.

The US has ordered non-emergency government employees to leave Ethiopia.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has said that Ethiopians must be ready to make ‘sacrifices’ to save the country from rebel forces.

Abiy’s comments followed the formation of an alliance by nine groups built around the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front [TPLF].

On Saturday Abiy said on Twitter: ‘There are sacrifices to be made, but those sacrifices will salvage Ethiopia.’

Daniel Bekele, Chief Commissioner of Ethiopian’s Human Rights Commission, said to Al Jazeera: ‘ECHR is monitoring the circumstances of several arrests in multiple locations in Addis. We are concerned about what appears to be an ethnic profiling in these arrests and we shall continue closely monitoring to ensure that the state of emergency directives are not applied in an abusive manner.’

Speaking  to Al Jazeera Fisseha Tekle, Ethiopia researcher for Amnesty International said: ‘The terms of the state of emergency are licences to commit human rights violations. There is no supervision by the judiciary and Tigrayans are targeted. Within days of the state of emergency the police arrested several Tigrayans in the capital and in other towns. At the same time there has been an increase in hate speech by prominent activists and journalists.’

Tekle further said: ‘All of this predicts a grim human rights future for the country and we ask all regional and international actors to influence all parties to the conflict to protect civilians.’