Mager News Update – Wednesday, July 27, 2022 (Hamle 20, 2014 EC)

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Mager News Update – Wednesday, July 27, 2022 (Hamle 20, 2014 EC)

Today’s news updates are as follows:

  • Amhara massacre survivors in West Wollega fear another attack could happen under the pretext of reconciliation and
  • Journalist and author Tadios Tantu appeared in court.

Amhara massacre survivors in West Wollega fear another attack could happen under the pretext of reconciliation 

Survivors of the Saturday, June 18, 2022 (Sene 11, 2014 EC) state-sanctioned massacre (genocide) of Amhara residents in Gimbi Woreda (West Wollega Zone, Oromia Region, Ethiopia) told Mager Media that they fear another large-scale massacre could unfold as the woreda administration is calling for “reconciliation”.

Amhara residents were told by the woreda administration that they wanted to organize a dialogue with the local Oromo community to which they complained the perpetrators of the massacre were not limited to Oromo residents in the immediate community but also the Oromo Liberation Army (OLA), Qerro structure, Oromo police and special forces which worked in tandem, and they fear the pretense of a dialogue is to finish off the survivors of the initial massacre.

Local Amhara residents told Mager Media they were threatened days after the initial massacre not to say that the zonal and woreda-level administrations were involved in the attack although all levels of the administration were involved – the regional, zonal, woreda and kebele-level administrations. They also mentioned that, there has been no attention given to understand their predicament let alone provide a solution, and now, the suggestion of a dialogue has been presented.

The local Amhara representatives have also relayed that some of the perpetrators of the massacre including local Oromo residents and Qerro members had left the area and entered the jungle, others went to Addis Ababa, and those who remain in the kebele are the weaker residents, and so it is incomprehensible who the administration wants them to “make peace with”.

Even now, the OLA and Qerro who fled into the jungle are likely not far and have the general area surrounded as the government has not taken any action against them. The zonal administration is also actively trying to dismiss and undermine the genocidal acts committed against the Amharas by claiming the victims were not only Amharas but also Oromo people as well.

Over the past week, the representatives from the zonal administration were present in Oromia Region council meeting representing the West Wollega area, during which they said the victims of the Gimbi massacre also included Oromo people. 

Amhara survivors of the state-sanctioned genocide in both West Wollega and Qelem Wollega fear have said similar large-scale massacres could take place. For instance, kebeles in Hawa Gelan Woreda of Qelem Wollega zone have been continually under fire by OLA’s heavy artillery shelling.

In the case of journalist Tadios Tantu the court granted another court appointment

Earlier today on Wednesday, July 27, 2022 (Hamle 20, 2014 EC), the Federal Court Lideta Tertiary Anti-Terrorism and Constitutional Criminal Court granted journalist and history author Mr. Tadios Tantu an alternative court date to issue his appeal, according to Mr. Tadios’ attorney who spoke to Mager Media.

The attorney told Mager Media, the court which was supposed to hear the appeal in the presence of secondary suspect journalist Getiye Yalew (who was not brought in) was forced to reschedule the appointment so police could bring him in, as the prosecution is unable to hear the appeal without all suspects present.

Attorney Talemhu said the claim that the charges against Mr. Tadios were dropped which was circulated by various media agencies is false and that the appeal simply was not brought forth.

In the case of Mr. Tadios Tantu  journalist Getiye Yalew was given an alternate court date to appear of Monday, August 8, 2022 (Nehase 2, 2014 EC) at around 10 am (local time).

In addition, journalist and history author Tadios Tantu will appear in court tomorrow on Thursday, July 28, 2022 (Hamle 21, 2014 EC) in the court’s Sidist Kilo branch to appeal his case. It is expected the court will either approve or deny bail in the amount of 15,000 birr.

Mr. Tadios Tantu’s lawyer informed Mager Media that during today’s court hearing his client was seen in apparent good health and spirits.

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