Deadly Drone Attack Unveils Ongoing Conflict in Amhara

In the enduring conflict between government security forces and Fano militants in the Amhara region, a recent drone attack has left civilians reeling in fear and devastation.

Witnesses recount the harrowing events of May 12, 2024, when an explosion ripped through Gulo Primary School in the Kewet District of the North Showa Zone, claiming the lives of three farmers and leaving a female teacher critically injured.

The aftermath of the attack paints a grim picture of recurring violence in the region, with innocent citizens caught in the crossfire between warring factions.

Residents speak of government security forces allegedly targeting civilians under the guise of combating Fano militants, driving many to seek refuge in the forests to evade persecution.

Further reports emerge of another drone strike at Mezezo High School in the Tarmaber district, where additional injuries were sustained.

Despite efforts to seek clarification from authorities, responses from the North Shoa Zone Command Post and the National Defense Force remain elusive.

The conflict’s origins trace back to the federal government’s decision to “reorganize” regional special forces, igniting tensions that have since spiraled into a protracted struggle.

A six-month state of emergency, declared in August 2023, was extended for an additional four months, with its conclusion imminent.

The protracted conflict has left thousands of workers unemployed, exacerbating their economic hardships and disrupting their ability to provide for their families.

Endris Abdu, the Head of the Amhara Region Industry and Investment Bureau, reported that over 6,000 workers across more than 1,200 industries have been displaced due to the conflict.

Meanwhile, Desalegn Tasew, the Head of the Regional Peace and Security Bureau, disclosed that the ongoing war has resulted in the destruction of property valued at over 15 billion birr in the region.

The repercussions of the conflict extend beyond economic devastation, with the education sector bearing a heavy toll. Mulunesh Desie, the head of the regional education office, lamented the partial or complete destruction of 298 schools and the displacement of 2.6 million students, with 3,725 schools forced to shutter their doors.

Allegations of deliberate killings by the National Defense Army in areas like Bahr Dar, Merawi, and Majete have been documented, with the federal government dismissing complaints against its forces.

International human rights bodies and Western nations have condemned the drone attacks, citing civilian casualties and urging their cessation.

In response, Field Marshal Birhanu Jula, Chief of General Staff of the National Defense Army, has defiantly asserted the continuation of targeted strikes, further entrenching the cycle of violence and suffering in the Amhara region.

Numerous reports from international human rights organizations, including the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission and the UN, have raised concerns about the protection of innocent civilians amidst the conflict.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *