Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Wednesday, October 21st, 2020

Ethiopia charges prominent opposition figure with terrorism

Ethiopia charges prominent opposition figure with terrorism

ADDIS ABABA- Ethiopia has charged its most prominent opposition figure, Jawar Mohammed, and 23 other people with terrorism-related offenses, telecom fraud and other criminal activities, the attorney general’s office announced Saturday.
The office said they will appear in court on Monday. The charges relate to deadly violence that erupted in July in parts of the capital, Addis Ababa, and the Oromia region after the killing of singer Hachalu Hundessa, a prominent voice in anti-government protests that led to Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed coming to power in 2018. Authorities said over 180 people were killed in the July unrest.
Jawar, a media mogul-turned-politician, has huge support among youth in the Oromia region and returned to Ethiopia after Abiy came to power and urged exiles to come home amid sweeping political reforms that led to him receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.
The Oromo make up Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group but had never held the country’s top post until they helped bring Abiy to power. Now ethnic tensions and intercommunal violence are posing a growing challenge to his reforms.
Jawar has become fiercely critical of the Ethiopian leader, most recently over the postponement of the general election once planned for August because of the coronavirus pandemic. The government’s mandate expires late next month, and a new election date has not been set.
Jawar has been detained since he and several thousand people were arrested during the July violence. His lawyers have repeatedly asserted he was locked up because of his political views and have called for his release(AP)