Ethiopia: MPs set up commission of enquiry into recent massacres

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Ethiopia's parliamentarians have set up a commission of enquiry into the recent "inhumane massacres of civilians" in the country in a resolution adopted on Wednesday.

They named several regions, without explicitly referring to the most recent killing, which took place on Monday in the Qellem Wollega administrative zone of Oromia, the country's largest and most populous region.

The attack targeted the Amhara people, the second-largest ethnolinguistic community after the Oromo.

On Wednesday, the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, called for an investigation into "the attacks on Wollega territory" and urged the Ethiopian authorities "to take the necessary measures to protect civilians, especially minorities, and prevent such events".

In its resolution, voted during a "special session on the current security situation", "the House of People's Representatives strongly condemns the indiscriminate killings of civilians and members of the security forces" in several parts of the country, to which it is "necessary to provide a solution".

"It has been decided to form a special committee to investigate the matter, so that the House and the people have sufficient information, as well as to make recommendations for further action," the text said.

On Monday evening, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed had accused the Oromo Liberation Army (OLA), a rebellion active since 2018 in Oromia, of being responsible for the massacre in the Qellem Wollega area, in the far west of Ethiopia.

The OLA, which has already been implicated by the authorities and survivors in a similar massacre perpetrated on 18 June in the neighbouring West Wollega area - also in Oromia - has once again denied being responsible for these killings targeting the Amhara community, pointing the finger at a local militia allied with the government.

On Tuesday night, in a video posted on the internet, Hangasa Ibrahim, a member of parliament from Mr. Abiy's Prosperity Party, accused Oromia leaders of having set up a militia group posing as the OLA, without providing any evidence.

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