MSF says staff witness Ethiopian troops execute civilians in Tigray

Eritrea Ethiopia Tigray
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed launched a military campaign in Tigray last year after blaming the region's ruling party, the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), for attacks on army camps
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed launched a military campaign in Tigray last year after blaming the region’s ruling party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), for attacks on army camps

The medical charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said Wednesday its staff had been attacked, and had witnessed Ethiopian soldiers executing at least four men in the war-torn northern Tigray region.

The charity, known in French as Medecins Sans Frontiers, said in a statement that three staff members had been travelling in a clearly marked MSF vehicle on Tuesday on the road from regional capital Mekele to Adigrat when the incident happened.

“Along the journey they encountered what appeared to be the aftermath of an ambush of an Ethiopian military convoy by another armed group, in which soldiers were injured and killed. Military vehicles were still on fire,” said Karline Keijer, head of emergency programs for the charity.

She said Ethiopian soldiers at the scene stopped the MSF car and two public transport minibuses driving behind it.

“The soldiers then forced the passengers to leave the minibuses. The men were separated from the women, who were allowed to walk away. Shortly afterward, the men were shot.”

The MSF team was allowed to leave, but their vehicle was again stopped by soldiers not long after.

“They pulled the MSF driver out of the vehicle, beat him with the back of a gun and threatened to kill him. Eventually the driver was allowed to get back into the vehicle and the team could return to Mekele.”

Ethiopia’s army could not be immediately contacted for comment on the statement.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed launched a military campaign in Tigray last year after blaming the region’s ruling party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), for attacks on army camps.

Abiy, winner of the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize, declared victory when federal forces entered the regional capital Mekele in late November however fighting continues.

After weeks of efforts to assert that normalcy is returning to Tigray, Abiy conceded Tuesday that there had been atrocities committed in the semi-autonomous region.

“Battle is destructive, it hurts many, there is no question about it. There have been damages that happened in Tigray region…” he said.

Residents of Tigray have told human rights groups and journalists of massacres, widespread sexual violence and indiscriminate killings of civilians by security forces.

Abiy also admitted soldiers from neighbouring Eritrea were in the region.

Ethiopia’s rights body on Tuesday corroborated studies by international rights groups that a bloody massacre had taken place in the historic town of Axum in November, saying over 100 had been killed by Eritrean soldiers.


2 thoughts on “MSF says staff witness Ethiopian troops execute civilians in Tigray

  1. ትልቁ የደንቢያና የሐማሴን ሊጥ እንደሚከተለዉ መለሰ

    It could be him or someone who run his profile , but my friend received the following reply against the allegation and killings of innocent people in Tigray

    “Perhaps that is your stock in trade.. so you think everyone does that.. Rape is repugnant and abominable to Eritrean society. women were 1/3 of the liberation army. So by our customary laws, the values enriches during liberation war and legal provisions in or modern civil and penal codes, sexual violence entails harsh punishment. Do shut up and do not insult a society you know nothing about”. Haven’t connected with Yemane Ghebremeskel, linkedin alert.

    He concluded his message by giving an order to the man to shut his mouth.

    Comment: This gang leader, Mr Yemane Ghebremeskel, brought several reasons from high & low to back up his claim and evade accountability and veil the terrible experiences of our people, being raped, killed & thrown to the ditches. Rape is repugnant in all society, but citing this moral value doesn’t disprove the reality on the ground.Women were 1/3 of soceity, hence rape was not committed by Eritreans. Historically speaking, Could we say rape was not committed in any army where women were part of a giant army? This army could be victorious or loser. The victory or loss or even the compostion (constituents) of the army doesn’t prove the absence of a crime which could likely be committed by its members.

    Given the fact that there are harsh punishment against anyone who committed crimes and rape against her/his victims, but this punishment or penal code doesn’t avoid crimes of various features and magnituide. To sum up, he made a ridiculous conclusion. Let me remind you something what an FBI crime investigator told : Criminals like  Yemane Ghebremeskel and others always bring something to the crime scene and always leave something behind at the crime scene. The reality on the ground (massacre of our beloved ones & destruction of our public and private infrastructure are still there ) coudn’t be covered up by such tiny and pointless remark like the one made by this gang leader, Yemane Ghebremeskel.

    Just my penny Contribution! Tigray will prevail and undeniably be an independent nation whose foundational elements are the blood of our martyrs, serving as a seed, indomitable Tigray defense Forces, and all Tegarus who are fighting against evil forces and devoting their lives, time and resouces to make that happen.

  2. BTW, The guy didn’t insult Eritreans colllectively or this gang leader except telling him why is he leading the crime against innocent civilians as a gang leader?? Hence, he just acted agressively and respond in away that resembles the expression of beating around the bush. Calling a killer and directing gang criminals is not an insult but calling a spade a spade.

    We all have equally beloved ones that are brutalized and tortured in the same manner by these war criminals. We donot have to justify it unless we made an obstacle against our community .

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