News / Africa

    Opposition: More Than 40 Killed in Ethiopia Protests

    Opposition leaders in central Ethiopia said security forces have killed more than 40 people in recent weeks, amid protests against a government development plan.

    Demonstrators began holding rallies late last month over a plan to expand the city limits of Addis Ababa, the capital.

    Critics in Ethiopia's Oromia region said the plan would displace local farmers and rob the area of its autonomy.

    Oromo Federalist Congress leader Bekele Nega told VOA's Horn of Africa service the government is trying to crush the protests. He said troops have broken into innocent people's homes, while other Oromia residents tell VOA they have seen soldiers shoot civilians.

    The government put the death toll from the protests at five, not including four police officers it said were killed Tuesday in Oromia.

    The Ethiopian government said the protests have been infiltrated by extremists, including hardliners from Ginbot 7 and the Oromo Liberation Front, groups the government considers terrorist organizations.

    Muktar Kedir, president of the region, said, "No development will take place without the consent of the public."

    Nega disputes that, saying the government has not been inclusive during the drafting of its development plan for Addis Ababa.

    Salem Solomon

    Salem Solomon is a journalist and web producer at Voice of America’s Horn of Africa Service, where she reports in English, Amharic and Tigrigna. Her work has appeared in The New York Times,, Reuters and The Tampa Bay Times. Salem researches trends in analytics and digital journalism, and her data-driven work has been featured in VOA’s special projects collection.

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    This forum has been closed.
    Comment Sorting
    by: Anonymous
    December 18, 2015 3:31 PM
    You all need to stop blaming all the problems of Ethiopia on Eritrea!!
    In Response

    by: Sara from: UK
    December 19, 2015 7:30 PM
    Eritrea is still under UN Security Council sanctions for supporting terrorism in Ethiopia.

    Just the facts!

    by: Hojetahoo from: Canada
    December 17, 2015 1:23 AM
    Killing children and university students with live bullets is not an answer! I am shocked to see the graphic images of students victims lying on streets on the social media. Peaceful #OromoProtests should be answered peacefully, not with gun. Evicting people and in-slaving farmers without proper compensation is legitimate question. This happening all over Oromia region. Oromos are tired of the Ethiopian regime mass killing and arrest. The Ethiopian regimes call it development, when evicted people are baging on streets and starving to death
    In Response

    by: yaya from: Addis ababa
    December 17, 2015 8:26 AM
    To talk so much while afar from the scene looks nice. We need development. The government is doing its best to benefit everyone. Terrorists will not hinder our development and we will never surrender to such provocations
    In Response

    by: Tolessa K. from: Nazret, Ethiopia
    December 17, 2015 6:18 AM
    Chicken sitting on computer in Canada telling people to rise up on other side of the world. Throw a brick at Canadian or U.S. police and see if you survive, social media tiger.

    by: Mimi from: Ethiopia
    December 16, 2015 9:15 PM
    Protests for lack of development, then against development...

    The usual suspects (opposition "leaders") stirring unrest every calendar year to justify next installment of $$$ from Eritrea.
    In Response

    by: Birru from: Oromia
    December 18, 2015 7:10 AM
    No one is against development but today Oromo youth is intentionally marginalized from having possessions.

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