Written by Umamah Bakharia
More than 200 Amhara people were killed in the Oromia region last weekend. Ethiopia is one of the most ethnically diverse nations in Africa. It also has the second-largest population on the continent. But in recent years, the country has struggled with rising ethnic-based violence and tension has struggled with rising ethnic-based violence and tension.
Radio Islam International spoke to a senior Ethiopian analyst at the International Crisis Group, William Davison on the recent ethical violence in Ethiopia.
According to Davison, the recent incident of the recent killings in the west of the region comes amidst ongoing insurgency by the Oromia nationalist organisation called the Oromia Liberation Army (OLA), through which the government has made repeated attempts to the OLA but it recently hit back some major attacks.
The OLA has since denied the attack and blames the Ethiopian government for the massacre. “It is a recent event and it there has been a real shortage of investigation and reporting coming from Oromia because of teh ongoing conflict, so there is not much evidence that’s emerged yet,” says Davison.
Even though religion hasn’t been a big factor in the violence, the insurgency has been ongoing by the OLA, which argues that Oromia doesn’t have its own share of power in the country.
Another factor is Amhara civilians who are subjected to attacks to which they blame the Oromia people and see the region only for the Oromia people. “That is the allegation that spills over into violence in the ethnicities including Amhara in the region that is partly denied,” says Davison.
So far, there have been peace talks between the government and the Tigray leadership even though there still are concerns of violence. However, there has been no effort by the government in the Oromia region.