More than 50 people have been arrested after an alleged coup attempt in an Ethiopian region, an opposition party says.
National Movement of the
Amhara (NaMA), said dozens of its supporters had been arrested.
Police said earlier that
several suspects were being questioned in the state where the alleged coup
The arrests follow the killing of the army chief, who was reportedly killed by his bodyguard in the coup attempt.
The BBC’s Kalkidan
Yibeltal in Addis Ababa says NaMA is an ethno-nationalist party essentially
campaigning to advance the interests of the Amhara people, Ethiopia’s second
largest ethnic group.
As well as army chief Gen
Seare Mekonnen, four other officials died as a result of the violence and
funerals were held on Wednesday.
The alleged ringleader of
the coup, Brig Gen Asaminew Tsige, was shot dead on Monday, police said.
Asaminew was a member of
the party ruling Amhara region, the Amhara Democratic Party (ADP), a member of
the ruling coalition Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF).
He had a reputation for hardliner
ethnic nationalism and had previously called for the Amhara people to have greater
Earlier this month, in a
video on social media, Asaminew had also openly advised the Amhara to arm
There has been an increase
in ethnic tensions and violence since Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed came to power
last year and introduced democratic reforms.
The arrest of dozens of
opposition supporters happened in the capital, Addis Ababa, NaMA said.
“The campaign of
arrests against NaMA members and sympathisers isn’t just directed against a
party, but is also an identity-based attack,” spokesperson Christian
Tadele told AFP.
The internet was shut down across the country but has now been partially restored. –BBC
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