At least 50 civilians have been killed in Kiramu district, east Wellega Zone in Ethiopia’s Oromia Regional State in the latest string of targeted attacks against ethnic Amhara people.
Survivors of the targeted attacks said the rebel Oromo Liberation Front otherwise known as ‘OLF Shane’ and some mebers of the Oromia Regional Special Forces carried out the targeted attack.
“Shane and the Oromia Special forces have killed ethinic Amhara residents in the district. They have also looted our properties and burned down our homes,” residents have told Mereja.com.
“First, the conflict was between Amhara farmers and OLF Shane. Later, the Oromia Special Force joined the Shane troops to carry out targeted attacks against ethnic Amharas. The dead bodies have not been collected yet, one of the survivors told Mereja.com.
Ethnic Oromo residents on the other hand blamed what they call “FANO.”,an organized youth militias, to kill ehnic Oromo residents in the district. Ethnic Oromo residents in the area refer government forces to as “FANO” that are deployed to the area to reverse militant activity of Shane.
Other residents said there were no Fano forces in the district.
The number of casualties in the district is estimated to rise as the number of bodies of victims who were killed in the jungle were not counted, eyewitnesses have said.
A resident of Kiramu blamed the “OLF Shane” for the unfolding killings in the district and according to him there were no what is called Fano forces in the district but the residents had defended the OLF Shane forces.
Currently, over 60,000 ethnic Amhara people fled to Haro locality fleeing the targeted attacks in Kiramu and nearby areas.
The Ethiopian government has not yet released a statement regarding the latest security incidents that claimed hundreds of lives in the region.
The security situation in the region has been deteriorating since Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government came to power in April 2010. His government has failed time and again to end ethnic-based violence in the Oromo region mostly targeting ethnic Amharas.