Ethiopia: concern after the arrest of thousands of Tigrayan civilians in Addis Ababa

Many Tigrayan civilians have been arrested by government authorities in Ethiopia since the state of emergency was established.

© Wikimedia Commons / Mattias Kiel Nielsen

Text by: RFI Follow

1 min

Since the government declared a state of emergency two weeks ago, Ethiopia has been rocked by a wave of arrests.

The authorities ensure that they only arrest individuals suspected of espionage, but the operation is taking on worrying proportions.

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With our correspondent in Addis Ababa,

Noé Hochet-Bodin

According to an Amnesty International report, it is first of all the Tigrayans who are arbitrarily arrested because of their ethnic origins.

The NGO estimates that there could be hundreds, if not thousands, currently detained.

Fear has therefore once again taken hold of the Tigrayans living in Addis Ababa.

The state of emergency in fact allows the police to arrest individuals without an arrest warrant, if there is "

 a reasonable suspicion that they support the Tigrayan party of the TPLF 

".

Arrest following denunciations from neighbors

If the police and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs deny any ethnic profiling, this is what Amnesty International denounces.

Because no Tigrayan is really immune.

Some residents are reportedly denounced by their neighbors, arrested at the café because they speak Tigrinya, or even arrested during a police check, because their names sound Tigrayan.

Very little information is filtering out about these arrests.

Amnesty International ensures that the police stations in the capital are full and that the police gradually move the numerous detainees to at least 6 places of detention requisitioned for the occasion, where they are deprived of any contact with the outside.

A humanitarian source in the Ethiopian capital speaks of the extreme conditions of detention.

See also: In Ethiopia, Human Rights Watch warns of the situation of women victims of sexual violence

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