Friday, October 14, 2016

Ethnic Unrest Threatens to Derail Ethiopia’s Boom: QuickTake Q&A

(Oct 14, 2016, (Bloomberg))--For a decade, Ethiopia has been lauded as an economic success story and a bastion of stability in the tumultuous Horn of Africa region. That status is now under threat as an outbreak of ethnic unrest is met with a government crackdown.

1. What sparked the conflict?
Protests erupted last year in Oromia, the nation’s most populated region, which surrounds the capital, Addis Ababa. The trigger was a plan, since put on hold by the government, for the integrated development of the capital and surrounding areas of Oromia. The Oromo have long complained of state repression and harassment.

Violent clashes have taken place involving the nation’s two largest ethnic communities, the Oromo and Amhara, and businesses have been attacked. Security forces have killed more than 700 people since the unrest began, according to a Brussels-based human rights group.

2. What does the government say?
Authorities accuse “foreign elements” of orchestrating the strife. On Oct. 9, Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn’s administration declared a six-month state of emergency that it says is needed to restore law and order. Read more from Bloomberg »

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