Addis Abeba, February 07/2019 – Asemahegn Asres, Amhara regional state communication bureau head, said lives were lost and properties were damaged in clashes that erupted in localities in central Gonder Zone of the regional state, Amhara Mass Media Agency (AMMA), quoted Asemahegn as saying.
According to him the clashes, in particular in Dembiya Woreda of central Gonder, have claimed lives and resulted in destruction to properties. Asemahegn said the clashes occurred when the federal army’s 24th brigade was leaving the area, being substituted by the 33rd brigade. “Organized armed groups” have attacked government security forces, leading to renewed clashes in the area, AMMA quoted Asemahegn as saying.
According to an earlier report by DWAmharic, clashes between groups from the Amhara and the Kimant people in Chilga Wereda in central Gonder have led to a closure of the road connecting Gonder to Metema as of February 01. The portal also quoted commander Enyew Zewdie, police chief of the zone, as saying lives were lost and properties were damaged in the clashes. The commander did not mention the number of people killed.
Ethiopia Live Update, a twitter portal, reported that clashes between groups from the Amhara and Kimant people have also occurred in localities in western Gonder zone. Details of causalities are not clear.
A referendum to determine the administrative jurisdiction of the Kimant people was held in eight Kebeles in September 2017. Seven of the eight Kebeles have voted to remain in the administrative jurisdiction of the Amhara Regional State, whereas Quaber Lomye Kebele voted to join the Kemant self-administrative zone, which was established two year prior to the referendum. The result of the September referendum was approved by the House of Federation in October 2017. Since then however, clashes have frequently visited the two communities. Activists blame “Kimant identity group”, which refused to accept the results of the referendum, for the clashes.
Asemahegn told AMMA that the clashes do not represent the the people of Amhara and Kimant. AS