ADDIS ABABA: A total of 207 people were killed in a Wednesday attack by gunmen in western Ethiopia, the country’s Human Rights Commission (EHRC) said, more than doubling a previous count.
The independent government body had on Wednesday said 100 people were killed in their sleep and crops burned in a pre-dawn assault in the Metekel area of the Benishangul-Gumuz region.
“133 of the victims were adult men and 35 were adult women. Seventeen children, one of whom a six-month-old baby, and 20 elderly persons were killed,” the EHRC said in a statement posted to Twitter late on Friday.
Mostly inhabited by ethnic Shinasha, Oromo and Amhara people — the last two making up Ethiopia’s most numerous groups — the Metekel area has suffered a string of deadly attacks in recent months.
Local leaders blame ethnic Gumuz people for the violence.
Following Wednesday’s attack, “effort is underway to identify the victims with the help of survivors and identity cards,” the EHRC said.
The body repeated its appeal for “relevant authorities to provide urgently humanitarian assistance to the victims and persons displaced by the attack.”
It added that around 10,000 had fled the Bekuji Kebele area and made for the city of Bulen, around 40 kilometres (25 miles) away, which is already sheltering “thousands of displaced persons”.
Source: The News