BENISHANGUI-GUMUZ, 24 December 2020 – Ethiopian federal forces have been accused of killing 42 people in the Benishangui-Gumuz region.
In reports Thursday, Ethiopian state media did not give the identity of the 42 people killed in the military operation to hunt down the attackers.
The assailants torched the homes of sleeping villagers, stabbed and shot dead innocent villagers, leaving at least 100 people, including children, dead in all.
Dozens of people remain unaccounted for.
It is unclear who the attackers were, but rights groups like Amnesty International, have said they targeted ethnic minority communities viewed as “settlers” in the region.
Amnesty International said it had spoken to survivors and an official who reported that members of the ethnic Gumuz community attacked the homes of people from the Amhara, Oromo and Shinasha communities.
The attack occurred Wednesday, a day after Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed visited the region.
Abiy Ahmed described the massacre as tragic, and said his government had deployed a force to to the region to help find a solution to the conflict.
State media said five current and former government officials, including a former deputy minister, are under detention for some role they allegedly played in the crisis.
Some of those detained are accused of not fulfilling “their responsibility appropriately”.