The international non-governmental organization has urged the Ethiopian government to let in international investigators to identify how many people were killed during the country’s Irreecha festival on October 2.
People were killed in Bishoftu town 40 kilometers Southeast of Addis Ababa during the annual festival that normally attracts 40 million Oromos people in the country’s most important cultural event.
More than 500 have been killed since November 2015. In August this year security forces shot dead 100 during the large-scale anti-government protests culminated in Ethiopia’s largest region Oromia from November 2015 and swept to Amhara region in July 2016.
But opposition of the Ethiopian government insist that during the festival alone not 50 people died, it was 678.
The dead succumbed to a stampede resulting from induced fear and tagging from police tear gas and gun shots as it confronted a huge crowd to prevent a demonstration.
Ethiopia government is being antagonized for its persistent harassment, criminal charges and surveillance of independent media and NGOs. And there is no free space for political freedom.
Felix Horne, a senior Africa researcher at Human Rights Watch said, “As more and more people are killed in protests this year, the government should urgently change course to prevent more bloodshed.”
HRW said that Ethiopians should be allowed to criticize their government without fear and security forces restrain and be accountable.