Urgent call by Association for Human Rights in Ethiopia (AHRE)

The FDRE constitution and other international treaties ratified by Ethiopia clearly state that citizens have the right to live peacefully in a place of their choice, to own property, to build a family and raise their children in a stable environment and the government is responsible to respect, uphold and protect the rights of its citizens.  However, despite the expectation and hope for the recent reform in the country to bring about change, the human rights abuse in the country is spreading and getting worse. In particular, the massacre of innocent civilians and displacements have become a daily occurrence. In addition, the freedom of moving from place to place and earning a living has also become nearly impossible. The incessant massacre has caused citizens to feel alienated from their villages and took away their sense of safety. Association for Human Rights in Ethiopia has issued multiple statements on this matter. However, as the abuse continues, we continue to urge all concerned parties to take appropriate measures to stop abuses and massacres of innocent civilians. 

AHRE is deeply concerned about the constant massacres, displacements, extreme violations of human rights and suffering of civilians in different parts of the country especially in different parts of Wolega. As the government reported, on February 7, 2022 innocent civilians in Gidami Woreda, Kelem Wolega zone were massacred. According to the zonal administration, the massacre was carried out by the Oromo Liberation Army, adding that 87 civilians were massacred, and 81 others were killed in various places, bringing the total to 168 civilians. Woreda officials stated that such attacks have been frequently happening in the area, costing the lives of hundreds and displacing tens of thousands.

Moreover, in a statement issued on January 10, 2022, by the Amaro Special Woreda Government Communication Office, it was said that three people were killed, four others were injured, and properties were looted when armed men attacked vehicles traveling from Dilla to Amaro in the western region of Oromia. Woreda government officials say such attacks have been repeated several times in the area, killing hundreds and displacing tens of thousands. These attacks highlight the serious human rights abuses that are taking place and the frequency and severity of the problem in the area.

Similarly, drivers traveling from the Amhara region are enduring killings, beatings, and kidnappings due to repeated attacks by militants in Gohatsion, Abay Desert, and other areas of the Oromia region. According to a report by Deutsche Welle on February 14, 2022, within a one-year period, 10 drivers were killed. Association for Human Rights in Ethiopia calls on the government to take immediate and appropriate action to ensure the safety and well-being of citizens, as the attacks on drivers and similar incidents restrict citizens’ right to freedom of movement, work, and life. 

Therefore, Association for Human Rights in Ethiopia calls on the government to take the following steps to end the ongoing human rights violations in the country:

  • To take precautionary measures, to ensure accountability and to ensure that citizens are free from repeated attacks
  • Provide the proper support and assistance to victims and ensure lasting solutions

In addition, our organization calls on civil society organizations, the media, local elders and political parties to advocate, and condemn these heinous crimes. 

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