Ethiopia arrests 90 for suspected involvement in deadly ethnic violence

Source: Xinhua| 2019-07-19 18:58:25|Editor: Shi Yinglun
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ADDIS ABABA, July 19 (Xinhua)-- Ethiopian authorities have arrested 90 people suspected of involvement in recent deadly ethnic violence, an official said on Friday.

Adego Masaya, Deputy Chief Administrator of the western Benishangul Gumuz regional state, said the 90 suspects are accused of involvement in deadly violence in April that left scores dead, reported state media outlet Ethiopia News Agency.

Masaya said his administration has also replaced about 95 percent of officials in violence affected areas, for poor performance and failure to prevent recent violence.

He further said local and federal security forces have been deployed in violence affected areas to prevent a recurrence of the unrest that has affected the Benishangul Gumuz region in recent months.

Ethnic violence between members of the Amhara and Gumuz ethnic groups in April left at least 17 dead and thousands of others displaced.

Benishangul Gumuz, located along the Ethiopia-Sudan border, hosts Ethiopia's largest development project, the 6,450 Mega Watts Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam hydro project. The dam is being built on the Blue Nile River.

Ethiopia follows an ethnic federalism model, which has been credited with giving self-governance rights to more than 80 ethnic groups that make up the country's estimated 105 million people.

However, critics say the ethnic federalism model magnifies ethnic diversity at the expense of national unity, leading to occasional ethnic tension and clashes.