OSG Report 54: The Ethiopian government is using extreme violence to force a unitary state on an unwilling population.
Empire strikes back: catastrophic consequences
There seems to be a pattern to all this. It is very worrying.
Teshale Abera, former President of Oromia Region Supreme Court, November 2020.
Despite severe restrictions on the flow of information from Ethiopia OSG continues to record a relentless rise in the death toll as the government stifles all aspirations for selfdetermination for the peoples of Ethiopia.
Particularly large numbers have been killed in Western Oromia, especially in Wallega, where another 92 killings of Oromo have been added to the 350 recorded previously since October 2018. Of these 92, 54 died before mid-2019 and 38 in 2020. An additional 60 Amhara settlers died by government hands in Guliso on 1 November. Government forces have been responsible for at least 442 civilian deaths in Western Oromia, 340 in 2020 alone.
The names of another 42 killed within days of Hachalu Hundessa’s assassination on 29 June are recorded (all except 6 in Central Oromia) and added to the 42 already named as being killed in Report 53.
OSG has now documented 505 killings in 2019, including 100 Qimant in Amhara Region and 150 Sidama in SNNPR. Up to publication, OSG has recorded 777 killings in 2020, including 58 Walaita in SNNPR and 60 Amhara in Oromia Region. Those civilians killed in the war in Tigray have not been included in this total or in this report.
A most worrying development is the increase in reports of detainees being taken from police custody and summarily executed. At least ten of the killings by security forces recorded in this report occurred in custody or when detainees were removed from custody by soldiers.
Another significant development is the arrest of Oromo who are prominent in development, finance, the Oromo Relief Association and the Human Rights League for the Horn of Africa.
No longer are government forces restricting arrests to political activists and journalists. Just as in 1992/3, any prominent Oromo in any sphere is at risk of arrest or killing.
In this report, another 208 killings by government forces are recorded, making the total, despite poor access to information, of over 1,342 killings of civilians by Ethiopian government forces since October 2018.