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Tragic Massacre: 24 Amhara Civilians Killed and Hundreds Detained by Abiy Regime Forces in Abe Dongoro Woreda (May 29 - June 2, 2024)




Between May 29 and June 2, 2024, Abiy regime forces massacred at least 24 Amhara civilians and detained hundreds of other civilians in Abe Dongoro Woreda and neighboring villages of Jardega Jarte Woreda of Horo Guduru Wollega Zone (Oromia Region, Ethiopia)


Updated June 3rd, 2024



Summary


The Amhara Association of America (AAA) has verified that between May 29 and June 2, 2024, Abiy regime soldiers (Ethiopian National Defense Forces and Republican Guard), in collusion with the Oromia Special Forces and militant groups like Qeerro and Gachna-Sirna, carried out an ethnic-based massacre killing at least 24 Amhara residents and detaining hundreds of civilians in various kebeles of Abe-Dongoro Woreda and neighboring villages in Jardega Jarte Woreda in Horo Guduru Wollega Zone of Oromia Region in Ethiopia.



Description of Incident


The regime soldiers initiated the attack on May 29th in Ido-Kocha Kebele (near Tulu-Wayu town) by killing an Amhara civilian, under the pretext of disarming supposed Amhara extremists in the area. However, this operation prompted a self-defense response from Amhara farmers. Over the following days, fierce clashes erupted in Botro-Bora Kebele, resulting in significant casualties among the regime forces. According to initial reports, during the first three days of confrontation, a substantial number of regime soldiers were killed or wounded, and a significant cache of weapons, including small arms and heavy artillery, were reportedly seized by the farmers. This escalated the situation, leading the regime to deploy large-scale reinforcement forces to kebeles near to where the confrontation was held. According to sources, upon arriving at these kebeles, the reinforcement soldiers carried out indiscriminate violence against Amhara civilians through executions and arbitrary shelling. Such actions flagrantly contravene the principles of distinction and proportionality enshrined in international humanitarian law (IHL), which mandate the protection of non-combatants and the proportional use of force in armed conflict.


Moreover, during this period, hundreds of Amhara civilians living in various kebeles of Abe Dongoro Woreda, including women and the elderly, were arbitrarily detained because of their alleged familial ties to Amhara farmers who fought in self-defense, while the whereabout of numerous others remain unknown. Reports additionally verified that the regime forces intentionally destroyed numerous residential houses and looted other properties belonging to Amhara farmers. According to sources, over 50 residential homes were burned in Botro-Bora Kebele. A large number of farm animals were also looted from Amhara farmers in the area. Such actions represent clear violations of fundamental IHL and human rights principles. The tension and confrontation in the region have continued to escalate for the sixth consecutive day, exacerbating the humanitarian crisis and endangering the lives and well-being of innocent civilians. Numerous Amhara residents have evacuated their homes, seeking refuge in the forests and neighboring villages.


In a related development, recent reports have verified that on June 2nd, 2024, the regime orchestrated a troubling episode in Gomen Kebele, located in Jardega Jarte Woreda. According to sources regime forces, particularly Republican Guard forces, summoned the Amhara residents of this locality for a purported meeting. However afterwards the regime forces arbitrarily detained hundreds of Amharas who had participated in the meeting. The detainees were then forcefully transported via three military vehicles to the woreda Police Station.


AAA was able to identify the names of killed and some of the arrested victims during the reporting period. The identities of 21 killed victims were identified as follows:






AAA’s sources identified names of five individuals who were arrested by regime forces and whose whereabouts are unknown. Another three female victims were reportedly killed while they were returning from grinding mills in Tulu-Wayu town. Below is a partial list of arrested victims whose whereabouts are unknown.





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