Allegations have emerged stating that more than 1,000 members of the police force in Tigray were terminated for allegedly not aligning with the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) during the conflict with the Federal government led by Abiy Ahmed.
Reportedly, a civic organization called “Human Rights First,” as cited by DW Amharic report highlighted human rights violations against ethnic Tigray police personnel who had previously served in various regions—Federal, Addis Ababa, and Tigray—prior to the “The North War, -a reference to the conflict between the TPLF and Abiy Ahmed’s government. The war,however, affected the Afar and Amhara regions as the TPLF forces ventured out of Tigray in an attempted march to the capital Addis Ababa to reclaim Federal government power.
The termination of over 1,000 police members reportedly occurred in violation of the Pretoria Peace Agreement. The legislative action responsible for their dismissal was enacted by the Tigray Regional Council, which lost its legitimacy during the conflict for breaching the constitution, it was said.
The organization emphasized that the “full implementation of the Pretoria agreement”, signed in November 2022 to end the TPLF-Federal government conflict, could have potentially resolved this issue. Mebrehi Berhane, the Public Relations Head of the organization, urged all parties involved to honor the agreement.
The organization further indicated that it had presented the case of the terminated police members and suggested ways to address the problem. However, the Addis Ababa Police Commission rejected these proposals, while there has been no response from the Federal Police or the Tigray regional administration – according to the report by DW Amharic.
Following the outbreak of the conflict, ethnic Tigray members of the Federal and Addis Ababa Police were allegedly subject to discrimination based on their identity, suspended from duty, and not reinstated to their positions.
The situation in the Tigray region was notably different, as the decision to dismiss the police members involved the Tigray Region Council, which lacked the authority to take such actions. The rights group is considering legal action if the reportedly distressed police force members are not reinstated to their positions.
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