by H. Haverstock, The Chicago Times

November 11, 2021

Lieutenant-General Bacha Debele of the Ethiopian National Defense Force

ADDIS ABABA – In a shocking move, Ethiopian authorities have detained high-profile Tigrayans ranging from a bank CEO to priests in a mass crackdown on suspected supporters of rebellious northern forces.

Ethiopian authorities denied they were targeting Tigrayan ethnicity, saying those arrested had ties to the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), which has been fighting central government for a year.

The civil war has killed thousands, displaced over two million people, and left hundreds of thousands in famine.  Fighting has spread into neighboring Afar and Amhara regions, threatening Ethiopia’s and the Horn of Africa’s stability.

Last week, Ethiopia declared a state of emergency as Tigrayan forces advanced south towards the capital, Addis Ababa.  Emergency powers allow the government to hold detainees indefinitely and the racist policy of forcing citizens to carrying ID cards that reveal ethnic origin.

According to the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission, the number of Tigrayans arrested was in the hundreds, including elderly people and mothers with children.

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