Dead bodies allegedly recovered from a river bank in Kassala, Sudan, fueling claims of Humera Massacre. Ethiopian government issued alert about fake stories
Updated on August 3, 2021
Reuters on Monday said thirty dead bodies, at least, were discovered along the banks of Setit River, which is known in Ethiopia as Tekezze, in the Kassala region of Sudan.
Citing a certain Tewodros Tefera,who made a claim that he buried 10 bodies in the past six months , Reuters went further to quote him as saying “They were shot in their chest, abdomen, legs… and also had their hands tied.”
Another “Ethiopian refugee,” as reported by Reuters, said, on condition of anonymity,for fear of repercussion against family members in Ethiopia, said “We found nine…They tied them up with a rope and they were swollen, but there’s no marks of them being hit or shot”
It is with a story like that the supporters of Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) are readying for a social media campaign to claim that there was a “massacre in Humera”
In fact, many of the stories from mainstream media outlets, regarding the alleged bodies, were shared on Twitter with the hashtag #HumeraMassacre
Apart from the pro-TPLF activists, some leaders with a policy leverage actively circulated the story on social media.
USAID Administrator, Samanta Power, said “Deeply troubling reports from Ethiopia-Sudan border. I was in eastern Sudan today & heard harrowing stories from refugees who fled same area. Warring parties must immediately facilitate humanitarian access & commit to ceasefire before more lives are lost”
Tewodros Adhanom, former central committee and executive members of TPLF, now Director General of World Health Organization, said “Heartbreaking. Ineffable tragedy.” Ethiopian activists criticize him for not saying a word when over one thousand civilians were brutally massacred by TPLF forces in Maikadra.
The TPLF has been attempting, through war, to gain access to Sudan by controlling the Humera region of Ethiopia. Some international actors seem to push the idea of opening up the access point on alleged grounds of “humanitarian aid delivery.”
Perhaps there is more to the story of bodies that are reportedly recovered in Kassala.
State of Emergency Fact Check Task Force, a government body, shared a brief alert on its social media page, on Monday, saying that it has received information that TPLF propaganda wing has prepared audio-visual materials for the “Humera Massacre” campaign.
“The fake ‘Humera Massacre’ campaign by TPLF propagandists has been revived again using false images and showing graphic images. We ask all to disrupt and prevent dissemination of fabricated and misleading information,” it said.
On the other hand, some Ethiopian activists on social media have been warning at least for over a week now saying the TPLF has transported dead bodies, from battles in Afar and Raya areas, to Tigray region to make claims of genocide.
No independent body, so far, verified about the circumstances under which the alleged victims were massacred.
Editor’s note : This news article was updated on August 3, 2021 to correct error about the location of Kassala. It was first indicated as “Kassala region of Ethiopia.” It should read as Kassala region of Sudan.