There are confirming reports of a mass killing likely in three-digit number in the South West Zone of Ethiopia’s Tigray Region. People were stabbed till death in the Mai-Kadra town on the night of 9th November. The reports of this mass killing are because of the ongoing rift between the government and the liberation front. The tensions between Ethiopia’s government and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) is now going for a while and getting stiffer unless this incident happened. TPLF controls the Tigray region, Ethiopia’s northernmost state.
The dead people are said to have been day labourers who were not involved in the ongoing clashes of the Ethiopian Defense Forces (EDF) with the Tigray Regional Paramilitary Police and the militant branch of TPLF which is loyal to the Tigray People Liberation Front (TPLF). It is still unknown who killed these people and what motive was behind this killing. Government has shut down all the communication ways in and out of the Tigray region.
The witnesses of the mass killings, who were providing food and other supplies to the Ethiopian Defense Forces (EDF), visited the town immediately after the deadly attack, on the morning of next day i-e the 10th November. They found the dead bodies scattered all over the town and as well as the injured survivors, according to the report published in the Amnesty International.
According to the witnesses, the dead bodies were found laid in compromised situations near the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia and a road that exits to the neighbouring Humera town. According to the Witnesses, the wounds were perpetrated by the sharp weapons such as knives, blades, scalpels and machetes mostly, Amnesty said.
The independent verification of the information and update regarding incident about the clashes is not easy because the phone lines and internet services are down in Tigray region or allegedly put down at purpose by the government due to unknown reasons. Why the government is not allowing independent non-government organizations to analyze the incident is putting many question marks in the minds of Ethiopia’s government. Government has to answer a lot of questions to clear the air and kill the suspense.
One witness told Amnesty International that; those wounded told me they were attacked with axes, knives, and various sharp weapons. It can also be analyzed from the butchered dead bodies that the attackers use knives, blades and different sharp objects unless modern weapons to kill the innocent citizens; which are said to be mostly day labourers and living under the poverty line. There were also no bullets or any artillery involved in this massacre.
The UN has said that the vital aid supplies to hundreds of thousands of people in the northern region of Ethiopia are at high risk because of the conflict there. Ethiopia is already drowning in the cosmos of poverty, corruption, and bad governance. This important country in Northern Africa witnessed another episode of homicides which will continue to haunt in coming times. This chapter of the mass killing proves to be another nail in the coffin of suffering. This time innocent laborers were the victims.
What role have the players of powerful theatres played so far in Ethiopia and Northern Africa on a larger scale to curb the miseries? All international organizations failed to mediate to cool down the tension between the government and the Tigray People Liberation Front (TPLF). This results in this huge crisis of human killings.
The TPLF was also part of Ethiopia’s ruling coalition for many years; it allows them to prosper on different fronts. TPLF happened to build a proper militia loyal to the organization and its agenda. After Mr. Abiy curbed its influence after coming to power, two years earlier and in the reaction, the TPLF refused to join a unified party. Tigray leader Debretsion Gebremichael told AFP news agency that the accusations were baseless.
According to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), as of 11th November, more than 7,000 refugees had fled western Tigray state into neighbouring Sudan. This mass killing is one of the largest and wildest bloodsheds in the history of Northern Africa and Ethiopia, especially.
Are international organizations placed only to report the mass killings, poverty ratios and providing food and water supplies? International organizations have to step forward and use different tactics to ensure and prevent a massacre of this nature. These organizations have to free themselves from the trap of rich countries that provide millions of funding to start acting rationally unless International organizations will be as useful as nothing.