Several dead in attack in western Ethiopia

Several dead in an attack in western Ethiopia

Ethnic Amhara militiamen on patrol in the city of Gondar (archives).

Gunmen attacked a town in Ethiopia's western Oromia region on Monday, killing several dozen, survivors said. The latter claim that the assailants are members of an ethnic Amhara militia.

The regional authorities rather accuse the rebellion of the Liberation Army oromo (OLA) of being behind this attack, the toll of which remains to be confirmed.

According to residents interviewed Friday evening by the Agency France-Presse (AFP) on condition of anonymity, the attack targeted the town of Agamsa early Monday morning.

The assailants attacked the town from three directions with firearms and continued their attacks until about 2 p.m. [1100 GMT], said a man, who fled the town.

< p class="e-p">They killed about a hundred people, burned many houses and shops, and looted food warehouses [transporting their loot] using rickshaws, cars and motorcycles, he said.

Another claimed cattle were also stolen and the attack left over 100 people dead.

Both witnesses said the attack was carried out by militia men from the neighboring Amhara region.

OLA, an armed group active in the region, accused the Amhara Fano militia of killing at least 62 people in Agamsa.

The regional authorities of Oromia have, for their part, incriminated the Oromo Liberation Army, which they refer to as Shane.

This what happened in Agamsa is that the terrorist group Shane and extremists attacked civilians. The number of victims remains to be confirmed, said Hailu Adugna, head of communications for the regional government.

The federal government had not responded to requests from the federal government. AFP Saturday morning.

According to locals, Oromia regional special forces had left the area on Sunday due to a 'security rotation', but they did not there were no security forces to replace them, said one.

One ​​of the residents, who returned to Agamsa after fleeing, said on Friday evening that there was no presence of government security forces in the area. town.

“We are afraid that the attackers will return. »

— A witness

The Oromia region, the largest and most populated in Ethiopia, is regularly the scene of attacks and reprisals between members of the Oromo and Amhara ethnic groups.

The conflict in Ethiopia has spread to the Afar and Amhara regions, where militia training is relied upon. (archives)

In August 2021, the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC), an independent body attached to the Ethiopian government, said that more than 210 people had been killed in one week in a succession of ethnic attacks in the Gida-Kirimu area, a few tens of kilometers from Agamsa.

In June, hundreds of civilians, mostly amhara were killed in the hamlet of Tole, in another part of Oromia, in a massacre that sparked international outrage. Residents interviewed by AFP and the government blamed the OLA. The organization denied these accusations and blamed pro-government forces.

The government regularly blames the OLA rebellion, which it has classified as a terrorist organization. He considers him responsible for the massacres of Amhara civilians living in Oromia.

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