Ethiopia’s Human rights at a crisis level, Commissioner

Non-State actors indicated as leading human rights violators. The Commission called on the Ethiopian government to protect citizens from human rights abuse.

Ethiopian Human Rights Commission _ Daniel Bekele
Daniel Bekele, Ethiopian Human Rights Commissioner. Photo : File / credit : DW Amharic

By Staff Writer
January 24, 2020

Major International Human rights defenders hailed Ethiopia for the improvements in the areas of freedom of expression and human rights after  Abiy Ahmed ( now Nobel Peace Prize winner) became prime minister.

As it turns out, the country is now living a major human rights crisis again, and this time around, the principal violators are non-state actors inspired by radical ethnic nationalist political ideologies.

Ethiopian Human Rights Commission Commissioner, Daniel Bekele, has presented a six months work report to the Ethiopian House of People’s Representatives on Thursday.

The Commission sees the human rights crisis, it calls them complex ones, as an outcome of the challenges that the reform measures in the country are facing.

Mr. Daniel spoke with emphasis that  “…citizens have been killed horrifyingly and disgustingly, rapped and some have become disabled as a result of the attack.”  

Radicalized religious and ethnic-based politics and social and economic crisis has led to protest violence in the urban and rural areas, said Ethiopia’s Human Rights Commission Report.

Hospitals and university campuses are some of the places where citizens get killed.  The report also highlighted that properties (private and individual) worth millions of birr had been destroyed in politically motivated ethnic-based attacks in different parts of the country, and thousands internally displaced.

Mr. Daniel also pointed out that armed groups have forcefully kidnapped people, including public servants, foreigners, females, and even children.

The Commissioner also said that the root causes of the problem are social and political problems that the government and the parliament needs to work on it.

Mr. Daniel recommended that the government should conduct a meticulous investigation into human rights abuse and bring the perpetrators to justice.

For nearly two months now, the whereabouts of 21 students of Dembi Dollo University is unknown after a militant wing of Oromo Liberation Front (It is locally called Shane) kidnapped them on their way home following the university’s closure.

OnĀ  January 11 of this year, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government announced on state media that it had secured the release of 21 kidnapped students, and it is negotiating for the release of six others.

Two weeks after that, kidnapped students’ parents are saying that they have not heard from their children, and the government is silent about it.

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