Ethiopia: About 600,000 people displaced, 21 killed in Moyale

by Engidu Woldie

ESAT News (December 17, 2018)

About 600,000 people have been displaced in Moyale in the past eight months while at least 21 people were killed in renewed clashes over the weekend between the Somali Gare and Borena Oromo communities in Moyale, Southern Ethiopia.

At least one hundred people have also been injured in the fight while residents of Moyale were forced to flee in their thousands to save their lives, according to Utukana Mole, a member of peace delegation.

Abdi Adil, head of security for the Somali region told ESAT that administrative boundaries drawn in a referendum 10 years ago has been the cause of conflict. He said there are areas in Moyale that do not fall under the administration of either side. The illegal contraband trade in the area has also its contribution to the crisis, according to Adil.

Abdi Adil said 9 people were killed and 31 injured from the Somali side, including peaceful citizens who were not involved in the violence. He called on the federal government to intervene and disarm the perpetrators before further lives would be lost.

Ethnic clashes in the south and south eastern Ethiopia led to the displacement of over 1.4 million people and the country currently has 2.2 million people IDPs as a result of conflict.

In the just ending year, Ethiopia has more new conflict-driven Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) than any other country in the world.

The total IDPs in Ethiopia has reached 2.8 million.

Meanwhile, chief of the western command of the national army, Major General Asrat Denero said main highways that were shut down in western Ethiopia as a result of conflict have been opened.

Since June, at least 40 people have lost their lives in Ethnic clashes in areas bordering the Oromo and Benishangul Gumuz regions in Western Ethiopia.