Amnesty International condemns mass arrests in Ethiopia

Amnesty International has condemned the recent arrests of thousands of people in Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital.

The NGO indicates that these detentions “threaten a new era of progress in the field of human rights” under Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

The Ethiopian authorities say that the police have carried out a wave of arrests following recent ethnic violence between the Oromos and other minority groups that have killed dozens of people in the capital and its suburbs in Burayu.

AFP quoted a source as saying that 65 people were killed in the violence.

A total of 3,200 people were arrested, according to Fana Broadcasting Corporate, a state-owned broadcasting company.

Addis Ababa police chief Degfie Bedi said about 1,200 people suspected of involvement in the fighting had been arrested and 107 suspects had been charged.

In addition, 2,000 more were arrested in casinos, shisha clubs and institutions where people chew khat (leafy narcotic stimulant) relays Fana Broadcasting Corporate.

Mr Degfie said those who had not participated in the violence would be released after receiving “training”.

Abiy came to power in April and implemented a number of reforms, including the release of dissidents and non-banned opposition groups, including the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), formerly known as terrorist organizations.

Some of the opposition leaders in exile have returned to Ethiopia since the beginning of these reforms.

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