By Staff Reporter
ADDIS ABABA – (BORKENA) – Following the serious attacks in four monasteries located in Debre-Elias Woreda, East Gojjam Zone of Amhara Region, only one monk was left unscathed in the area, Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church (EOTC) announced.
Addis Maleda quoted its source as saying that an unidentified number of monks were killed in a five-day operation conducted consecutively from May 26 up to 31, 2023 by government security forces under the pretext of hunting down armed forces.
Head of Monastery Administration Department with EOTC, Aba Habte-Giorgis Asrat told Addis Maleda that serious damage has occurred on all four monasteries and churches in the area. He said that before the government security forces conducted the operation, which they call “law enforcement”, several monks and assistants used to live in the area. During the recent visit, the Monastery Administration Department confirmed that only one mink was found alive in the area, Aba Habte- Giorgis said.
He further said that nothing was known about the whereabouts of the monks apart from those and their attendants who were proved to be killed by the operation. Several dead bodies were seen littering around in the wide garden of the monastery, Aba Habte- Giorgis said.
Aba Habte-Giorgis said that the monasteries that were damaged heavily by the operation are Silassie, Kidane-Mihiret, Elias and Giorgis. Including the exterior face of the churches and monasteries, the temples were heavily shelled by the operation, according to the head.
“The damage inflicted on the building of Kidane-Mihiret, in particular, is the most serious one,” he said. Here temple materials including holy properties and the dome of the church were reportedly destroyed.
Aba Habte- Giorgis further said that this time spiritual service has been disrupted fully in all churches. Joint discussion is underway between the Supreme ArchDiocese and Regional Diocese to investigate the severity of the damage and to rehabilitate the churches and monasteries, he said.
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