Commissioner of the Addis Ababa Police, General Degife Bedi, on Monday gave a press conference to a few government-affiliated media about the mass arrest of young Ethiopians in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa by his police department and other security forces. His statement was full of falsehood and obfuscation, to say the least. With a straight face, the Commissioner has said that over 2,000 young people have been arrested and all of them were engaged in civil disturbances and crimes. The truth is that many, if not most, of the detained youth have done nothing wrong except walking home or sitting in coffee shops, or bars. A few of them were participating in the effort to rehabilitate victims of the Burayu massacre, as they testified after they were released. For Addis Ababa residents who expected to hear a good explanation from their police commissioner, General Degife’s press conference has been terribly disappointing. Perhaps the commissioner has decided not to invite the independent media to his press conference to avoid tough questions. Addis Ababa residents and its youth deserve a better, more humane leadership from the city’s police chief than what we are currently witnessing.
General Degife Bedi’s press conference (video):