Wednesday, May 22, 2024
HomeOpinionEthiopia's Unchecked Abuses: The Plight of the Amhara People 

Ethiopia’s Unchecked Abuses: The Plight of the Amhara People 

Ethiopia’s National Security Council during a meeting

Isael Ze Etiel

The recent mass arrests of Amhara individuals in Addis Ababa and various parts of Ethiopia  based on their ethnic background have raised serious concerns about the state of human  rights and accountability in the country. Being Amhara has become a crime in itself, with  individuals being detained without arrest warrants, subjected to illegal searches of their  electronic devices, and coerced by the police to either pay bribes or face arrest. 

The Ethiopian government’s security forces have been accused of widespread abuses  against Amhara individuals, including shootings, abuse, and killings, with no one held  accountable for these actions. The government seems to operate with impunity when it  comes to the lives of Amhara people, treating them as criminals before they even have a  chance to stand trial. 

Furthermore, the Ethiopian government has been implicated in mass killings in various  regions across the country, including Oromia, Tigray, Gambella, Benishangul, Afar, Somali,  and the former SNNP regions. Despite these allegations, the government has attempted to  distance itself from responsibility and portray itself as innocent, undermining efforts for  reconciliation and transitional justice. 

On April 24, 2024, a statement from the National Security Council emphasized that while a  peaceful political transition is important, it is just one step towards achieving broader goals.  The statement highlighted that Ethiopia’s challenges cannot be fully addressed by simply  tweaking the current approach and underscored the need to address historical divisions. Three proposed solutions were outlined: addressing current political issues through national  dialogue, rectifying recent political challenges through transitional justice, and  implementing reforms aimed at protecting and preserving the leading party’s prosperity. 

The government’s approach to reconciliation appears to be self-serving, with a focus on  appointing loyalists to key positions and crafting a narrative that absolves it of any  wrongdoing. While the government claims to be working towards peace and security, its  actions tell a different story, with ongoing human rights abuses, extrajudicial killings, and  ethnic-based arrests continuing unabated.

It is crucial for the international community to pay attention to the plight of the Amhara  people in Ethiopia before the situation escalates further. Preventing further atrocities in the  country is paramount to avoiding a humanitarian crisis with regional implications. The time  to act is now to prevent history from repeating itself and ensure accountability for all those  responsible for human rights violations in Ethiopia. 

In conclusion, the situation in Ethiopia, particularly concerning the treatment of Amhara  individuals and the broader human rights abuses across various regions, is deeply troubling.  The government’s actions, characterized by ethnic-based arrests, extrajudicial killings, and a  lack of accountability, paint a grim picture of the state of human rights and justice in the  country. The proposed solutions outlined by the National Security Council are a step in the  right direction, emphasizing the need for national dialogue, transitional justice, and reforms  to address historical divisions. However, the government’s self-serving approach to  reconciliation and continued human rights violations underscore the urgency for  international attention and action. Preventing further atrocities and ensuring accountability  for those responsible are crucial to averting a humanitarian crisis in Ethiopia. It is imperative  for the international community to intervene now to prevent a worsening of the situation  and uphold the principles of human rights and justice for all Ethiopians.

Editor’s note : Views in the article do not necessarily reflect the views of


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