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War updates from Amhara Region, Ethiopia - May 12th to 19th, 2024

Updated May 21, 2024


Overview


For the period between May 12th and 19th, 2024, fighting between Amhara Fano freedom fighters (Fano) and Prosperity Party regime joint forces (regime forces) has continued in various parts of Amhara Region while identity-based persecution targeting Amhara residents has continued in Oromia Region.1


  • There has been ongoing fighting in nearly all zones of Amhara Region while the situation in Gonder sub-region has been particularly volatile. Joint regime forces have continued deliberate attacks on unarmed civilians and civilian targets including with the use of deadly drone strikes.2 Extrajudicial killings continue with victims often accused of supporting Fano (or having family members who support Fano) and attacks often targeting residential neighborhoods with targeted destruction of residential houses. In particular, following military losses in battles with Fano forces, retreating regime forces have targeted civilians in reprisal attacks.


  • There has also been an increase in terrorist attacks by Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) operatives in the Welkait Tegede Setit Humera Zone and Telemt area. Activities include assassination attempts of local officials (carried out by a kill squad called Kibrit) and bombings, which are believed to be motivated by plans to invade these areas, reintroduce Tigrayan settlers and to replace existing administration and security structures with Tigrayan counterparts. There are also efforts underway to train and mobile Tigrayan recruits in UN refugees camps in Sudan. This follows recent hostilities including ethnic cleansing of more than 50,000 Amhara residents by TPLF forces in the Raya area since April 12th, 2024.345678 In addition, on May 1st, 2024, TPLF vice-head Tadesse Werede announced they reached an agreement with the Federal Government to dismantle the Amhara administration in Telemt by the end of June 2024.9 TPLF forces including the Samri squad encamped in UN refugee camps in Sudan have been leading training exercises with an estimated 36,000 armed militants.10


  • On May 12th, an ambulance intended for the transportation of the sick and women in labour for delivery was repurposed to transport regime forces engaged in combat with Fano forces. The vehicle was subsequently attacked by Fano forces, resulting in the loss of lives and the destruction of the ambulance. Currently, throughout the Amhara Region, all vehicles designated for medical purposes have been repurposed for transportation by regime military forces.





War Update Report - May 12 to 19 2024
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1Prosperity Party regime joint forces include but are not limited to the Ethiopian National Defense Force (ENDF), Federal Police, state militias, and riot dispersal forces.

2See the February 14th, 2024 AAA report on human rights violations in the 6-month period since the declaration of the state of emergency (read the report here).

3AAA update from April 16th, 2024 on extrajudicial killings targeting Amhara civilians and members of the Raya Amhara Identity and Border Repatriation Committee in Raya Alamata Woreda of North Wollo Zone, Amhara Region, Ethiopia (link here).

4Reuters Africa article from May 3rd, 2024 (link here).

5Article from Al-Ain Amharic from April 28th, 2024 on the situation of Amhara residents in Raya since TPLF reoccupation of the area (link here).

6Statement from AAA from April 23rd, 2024 on the humanitarian crisis in North Wollo and Wag Hemra Zones of Amhara Region as a result of ethnic cleansing by TPLF’s invasion (link here).

7Statement from AAA from April 21st, 2024 on weak response from international diplomats regarding TPLF’s invasion of the Raya area (link here).

8Statement from AAA from April 15th, 2024 calling for denouncement of TPLF’s aggression in Raya (link here).

9Statement from Tigrai Television from May 1st, 2024 (link here).

10AAA report on the November 2020 Mai-Kadra massacre of more than 1,515 Amhara civilians in Mai-Kadra town by the TPLF’s Samri squad (link here).

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