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Ethiopian Government Pressures Business Owners to Defy Opposition Strike


Shopowners re-opened and taxi and minibus drivers returned to the streets of the Ethiopian capital Tuesday, apparently bowing to government pressure to ignore an opposition-led strike.

Some businesses opened their doors in the Mercato district of Addis Ababa, where police battled anti-government protesters for days last week, leaving at least 46 people dead.

Information Minister Berhan Hailu has warned of consequences if businesses refuse to serve the public.

On Monday, the main opposition Coalition for Unity and Democracy called for a week-long strike to protest the results from parliamentary polls in May which gave a victory to the ruling party.

Top opposition leaders have been arrested and held without charge in the wake of the unrest.

The acting U.S. Ambassador to Ethiopia, Vicki Huddleston, has cautioned the government and opposition to resolve their differences through dialogue.

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