Ethiopia appears to be detaining people ‘on ethnic grounds’, warns human rights commission

“People have been arrested at their workplaces, homes and on the streets and are being detained at various police stations in the city,” in the capital Addis Ababa, the EHRC said.

The prosecution echoes the findings of previous CNN research and accusations this summer of International Amnesty.

The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission recognized that the state of emergency declared on November 2 gives authorities the power to detain “persons suspected of collaborating with terrorist groups for reasonable reasons”, but demanded that law enforcement “must protect human rights and respect principles “. of legitimacy, reasonableness, proportionalism and impartiality “.

Human rights “cannot be restricted under any circumstances,” the commission warned Ethiopian law enforcement agencies.

Ethiopia is at war with itself.  Here's what you need to know about the conflict.
Speaking to CNN last week, prior to the EHRC’s statement, Addis Ababa Police Commander Fasika Fenta said police had been arresting people who had reason to believe they were working with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Tigray, the former ruling party of the northern region of Tigray. Fighters loyal to the TPLF have been fighting the Ethiopian army since Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed ordered an offensive in Tigray in November last year.

Fasika on Friday denied that the police were targeting people because of their ethnic origin, saying they were TPLF agents who had been paid and given weapons.

But he admitted that the majority of those detained were ethnic Tigraya, and said that people of other ethnic groups had also been detained. He said he did not have the exact number of people arrested.

CNN is seeking a response from the Ethiopian government to the commission’s indictment.

Amnesty International leveled similar charges against Ethiopia in July, saying then: “Dozens of Tigrayans have been arbitrarily arrested and detained by the Addis Ababa police without due process … The arrests appear to be ethnically motivated, with former detainees, witnesses and lawyers who they describe how the police checked identity documents before arresting people and taking them to detention centers. “

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