Amnesty International Fears for Detainees
UN Integrated Regional Information Network (Nairobi)
April 23, 2001
Posted to the web April 23, 2001
Hundreds of people have reportedly been arrested and are being detained incommunicado following the riots in the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, the international human rights organisation, Amnesty International, said on 20 April.
A statement said there was concern about the treatment of those arrested, as detainees "are routinely reported to be tortured in
Ethiopia". It said that Addis Ababa was now reported "to be calm but tense".
Security forces raided church compounds and mosques where demonstrators were taking refugee, and others were seized from their homes, a statement said. "Some of those arrested are believed to be as young as 11 years of age." The arrests came after widespread riots from 17 to 18 April, following a student campaign to removepolice from the campus of Addis Ababa university.
Amnesty International said more than 40 opposition politicians had reportedly been detained, including the secretary-general of the opposition Ethiopian Democratic Party (EDP), Lidetu Ayalew, two members of the EDP central committee, other members of the EDP, and members of the opposition All-Amhara People's Organisation (AAPO).
According to the report, security forces shot at, beat and kicked demonstrators during the riots, in which as many as 41 people were reportedly killed, and over 250 injured. Most of the dead and injured are said to be high school students and unemployed youths.
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