More than 1,500 arrested since Oct. 8 in Ethiopia

A state of emergency was established following waves of anti-government protests, mainly in Oromia region

More than 1,500 arrested since Oct. 8 in Ethiopia

World Bulletin / News Desk

More than 1,500 people have been arrested in the Ethiopian regions of Oromia and Amhara since the state of emergency was declared on Oct. 8 following waves of anti-government protests. 

“Arrests have been made on people who have been suspected of all sorts of crime…and others handed themselves over,” government spokesman Getachew Reda told a press conference Wednesday.

A weeklong series of demonstrations, in which protesters attacked factories and government buildings -- mostly in the Oromia region --- followed the killing of at least 56 people in a stampede that was triggered when police fired bullets and tear gas to disperse crowds at an Irreecha celebration in the south-central town of Bishoftu.

“Most of factories and plants are now back in business and people are going about living normally,” he said. 

“Peace and stability have been restored [but] a lot remains to be done,” he said. 

The Oromo, who make up Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group, have been protesting against the government since November last year. Demonstrators initially targeted a plan to extend the boundary of Addis Ababa, which the Oromo said would force them off their land, but the protests have since widened to address political and economic exclusion.

On a separate note, Getachew said the prime minister would soon announce a cabinet reshuffle. 

Last Mod: 26 Ekim 2016, 15:13
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