Five arrested for attack on mosques in Ethiopia’s Amhara region

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Five people suspected of burning down four mosques in region have been arrested, a regional spokesman says.

Five people suspected of burning down four mosques in Ethiopia’s Amhara region have been arrested, a regional spokesman has said, as rising intercommunal and ethnic violence threatens political reforms initiated by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

“Five people who are suspected of leading and organising the attacks have now been arrested,” Getnet Yirsaw, the Amhara state spokesman, said in a Facebook post on Saturday.

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State-affiliated Fana Broadcasting Corporate reported on Saturday that a number of mosques were attacked and that “other properties were destroyed” in Mota town, more than 350 kilometres (217 miles) north of the capital, Addis Ababa.

“Attempts by extremists to breakdown our rich history of religious tolerance and coexistence have no place in the new prosperity focused Ethiopia,” Abiy, this year’s Nobel Peace Prize laureate, said in a statement posted on his Facebook and Twitter accounts.

“I condemn such acts of cowardice and call upon all peace loving Ethiopians to draw upon our deep knowledge of coexistence and our reservoir of respect,” the statement added.

Fana also said one church was attacked.

Religious strife
While ethnic violence has been a persistent problem under Abiy, recent unrest appears to have been at least partly motivated by religion.

During several days of violence in the Oromia region in October that killed more than 80 people, attacks on both mosques and Orthodox Christian churches were reported.

Yet analysts caution that conflicts that appear to be rooted in religion are often also shaped by disputes over land use, ethnicity and other issues.

Muslims make up about one-third of Ethiopia’s population of 110 million, second only to Orthodox Christians at 40 percent, according to the last census which was conducted in 2007.

But Muslims are vastly outnumbered in Amhara, the country’s second-most-populous region where Orthodox Christians make up more than 80 percent of the total.

The attacks on the mosques were condemned by the Orthodox Church and the Ethiopian Islamic Affairs Supreme Council, Fana reported.

Daniel Bekele, head of the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission, said in a statement that Amhara regional officials “should act promptly to investigate and bring perpetrators to justice”.


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4 Responses to Five arrested for attack on mosques in Ethiopia’s Amhara region

  1. I condemn any barbaric act of burning churches and mosques. Did we forget about Rwanda? God forbid if ethnic and religious conflict breaks out in Ethiopia no one will win but logically the biggest loser will be Amhara people and the Orthodox church. You maybe saying why is that. The Muslim population and mosques in the Amhara regions are way smaller than the Amhara population and churches that are in the Muslim areas from the Somali region in Ethiopia to Orono region, there are millions of Amhara who are still living these places for centuries. This will be the biggest Exodus and disaster in human history. So Amhara people and groups should give this into consideration, they have to see the bigger picture and think beyond the Amhara region. If I was an Amhara person, I wouldn’t even think entertaining the idea of Muslim vs Christian or churches vs mosques. I would argue the Amhara leaders and groups to be wise and tone down their rhetoric and immediately start rebuilding those mosques.

    December 22, 2019 at 10:39 am

    • Waryaa

      beacuse amhara know that is dangerous act and at times they want to exercise thier muder and sinful nature , they simply put the blame on Woyane to get away from this stinky and perilous task.

      They will certainly face the music if they continue to engage in this kind of merciless task. Mark my words , they will regret it . Nearly 30 years ago, many amhara people became rich instantly by robbing shops , killing innocent people and selling religious items, when derge lost power and woyane was entering Finfine. Now, people know this historical barbarity and chaos that entitle killers to a huge riches, they are still curious to involve in it and get rich. They donot care wether you are amhara, tigrean Oromo or other ,they will hange you or anyone to make infinitely many properity, money etc

      shame shame shame shame shame shame shame shame shame shame shame shame
      KILLERS, ROBBERS deserve face the music deserve face the music deserve face the music deserve face the music AMEN

      Manitoba, CA

      December 23, 2019 at 8:29 am

      • A real Muslim doesn’t sell alcoholic beverages, a real Muslim does not pimp women , a real Muslim does not prostitute , a real Muslim does not rent rooms to prostitute’s customers . Ethiopian Muslims committee announced that Muslims should not consider this attacks as if they were directed at Muslim religion followers for the reasons mentioned above .

        The attacks were just simply poor communist hooligans robbing the feudal bourgeoisie rich, not Christian attacking Muslims . Church , Mosque and businesses were targeted by the Communist hooligans.

        Queen JaZZ'Isr Sheba
        December 23, 2019 at 4:38 pm

  2. This is very disturbing news for those of us who still have that gem of the colored close to our hearts and thoughts. This shows that thanks to demonic efforts by the ghoulish commies the legendary fabric of the society was left staggering after years of assault. One legendary culture of noble Amhara neighbors are known for just as my own Oromos is how they raise their children with impeccable values such as respect for elders and places of worship regardless of creed. We are both known for that because I know such products as my dear friends since my early formative years. But O’grief such culture of raising children has been eroded in both groups after decades of the rude mouths of the students of Das Capital. They call that Cultural Revolution. In their book children must obey only them but not their parents. They claim that our values are deeply rooted in the ‘decadent feudal culture’ and must be eradicated. Then you have these who have no respect for their elders, fathers/mothers and places of worship. I still remember how those ‘muezzins’ of Marx/Lenin/Mao used to address the old emperor. It was so vile that it makes you plug your ears. Criticizing was one thing but it was not all like that. They used to insult his old age. I used to wonder how those guys were raised. I mean all of them. It showed that they grew up unattended like those miscreants at the bazaars of the Middle East. Eyal-al-souqs that is. That is who we have now both in Amhara and Oromo regions. They are not the majority but have shown to be capable of turning into destructive forces on a dime. We had seen them when such eyal-al-souqs were roaming from one area to another in small towns and rural locations torching factories and places of worship occupied or unoccupied. It is not a shame to just a particular group of people but to all of us. This is not something we should use for bashing others. It is not that funny, ok!!! That old country was the country that provided refuge for those who fled murderers more than 1,400 years ago!!! You dear Amhara parents and elders! You have so much work cut out for you just as my own Oromos. We both somehow have to craft long and short formula in how to rein in such rowdy youths. The governments of regions along with the federal should do everything to straighten out these goons like wire. To show up at places of destruction and say ‘I’m here’ is not enough. It should level deterrent measures to such destructive vagabonds comparable to what crime was committed. We have read news bearing similar destructions in other areas before but I still have to see one mugshots of the criminals. Mao’s ‘re-education camps’ ain’t cut the mustard with such demons. Parade their mugshots because embarrassing them begins with that!!! All those from 16 years of and up must be charged as adults. This ain’t right and the regime has nothing to do with it. Those satanic bigots roaming the country who have melted away among the public are the ones that are instigating shameful acts like this. I am glad to hear that some of them are being rounded up. Then you throw’em in jail and toss away the key. So much damage has been done to the ages old inter-ethnic harmonious living. Inter-creed harmonious living was the latest glue that has bonded the society for more than 1,400 years. Such savage act to places of worship could be the last straw before that gem of the colored which have been holding very close to our hearts goes up in flames. This is not funny!!! This is not funny at all!!!!

    Ittu Aba Farda
    December 22, 2019 at 11:54 am

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