Fri. Mar 31st, 2023


Tensions remain in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, after police targeted civilians who held parallel celebrations to mark Adwa Victory Day on Thursday.

The day marks victory over Italian invaders in the famous Battle of Adwa in 1896 by the army of Emperor Menelik II, the founder of modern-day Ethiopia.

Police fired tear gas inside a historical Orthodox Christian church where some people had sought refuge after hundreds of people were dispersed from a city square named after Menelik II.

Residents told the BBC that police also blocked all ways leading to the square, which one described as “unprecedented”.

The official celebrations were held at Meskel Square, the city’s main square, which is uncommon for this particular holiday. Senior army and government officials were in attendance.

Several people who sustained injuries were reportedly admitted to hospitals.

An opposition party, the National Movement of the Amhara, said one its members was killed by bullets fired by security forces. The BBC has not independently confirmed the claim.

A statement by the government communications office blamed individuals it claimed wanted to “create disturbances”.

It admitted that “some people” were injured in the church including those who were attending religious services

By Joy

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