Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC) recommended that the government ensure perpetrators of rape in Tigray are brought to justice and to ensure that victims receive the appropriate support and assistance
February 11, 2021
EHRC on Thursday released what it called a follow-up report on the situation in the Tigray region of Ethiopia.
It is based on monitoring, but the commission admitted that some monitoring works were conducted remotely due to the security situation and lack of social basic social infrastructures in the region.
The Federal police commission has deployed forces in the region, but the number does not seem to match the level of needs for providing security to all parts of the region, it was indicated.
The commission has also contacted, it is indicated in the report, the Tigray region interim administration as part of the work of assessing the situation in the region.
Government structures that are not functioning are part of the problems, it was said.
For the interim administration, “the presence of Eritrean soldiers in the North-western and Eastern Tigray, and the fact that the former Western and Southern Zones of Tigray are now under the Amhara Region’s administration, adds to the challenge of fully re-establishing the regional governmental structure.”
The overall finding, from the commission’s view point is that “the war has left the regional governmental structures in shambles and caused physical damages to key infrastructural systems.”
The impact is that it has “led to serious gaps in provision of local administrative, safety and security as well as basic social services,” it was said.
The report also sees the rise in gender-based violence in the region as part of the consequences of the dismantling of the regional administration.
It is claimed that a total of 108 women were raped. 52 of them happened in Mekelle, 22 in Adigrat, 7 in Wukro and 27 in Ayder. Human rights claims are based on information, as indicated in the report, from the health official and regional health bureau.
EHRC made further claims that the number could be higher had structures like police and health facilities, to where victims turn to for help or to report them, were operational.
Only 30 percent of health facilities are said to be operational by the time the report was released. On the other hand, Lia Tadesse, the Minister for Health, on Thursday said “restoration of services by health facilities in Tigray is progressing with increasing number of health facilities functioning fully or partially, and commencing their routine activities.”
Who is behind the alleged rape? The report left is unspecified. What is confirmed,however, is that convicted criminals from ten prison facilities in the region set themselves free following the law enforcement operation in the region and that the interim administration in the region could not trace them as prisoners documentations have been destroyed.
On a different note, EHRC remarked that there have been improvements in terms of provision of humanitarian assistance.
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