Unconfirmed social media report says security forces deployed by Tigray regional state launched attacks today on civilians in Alamata town, Raya – a region in northern Ethiopia which was incorporated as part of Tigray in 1991 as Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) took power following the collapse of Colonel Mengistu’s government.
Dejene Assefa has been one of the few advocates of the legitimate and constitutional identity question of Raya people, which includes the town of Alamata. Based on information he shared (in Amharic) on his facebook page, dozens of people have been wounded following an attack by Tigray region security forces in Kebele 02 of Alamata town.
Among the victims are couples whom Dejene identified as Habtu Kebede and Meaza Moges. At least 43 people are hurt including women. However, there is no reports of death at this writing. Ethiopian state media (Ethiopian News Agency or Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation – among others) did not report about it at this writing.
As people in what used to Raya province of Wollo region assert their identity casting aside the imposed Tigray identity, the regional state in Tigray, which forcefully included the region as part of Tigray since 1991, is perusing a heavy-handed policy on alleged grounds that the identity question is a sabotage and mobilization by “others.” Somehow, Tigray regional elites seem to see military strategy significance in Raya for the imaginary war that they think will happen at some point in the future which is apparently standing in their way of making peace by addressing the identity question.
People in Raya province insist that they are simply exercising their constitutional rights and that their identity is not Tigrean. In fact, advocates of the cause seem to have the support of people from other parts of Ethiopia.
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