Hundreds of thousands of ethnic Tigrayans in Ethiopia are being tortured and killed in ‘concentration camps,’ reports The Telegraph. The violence is the latest development in a 10-month-long conflict between Ethiopia’s military and rebels in the Tigray region of the country. Abiy Ahmed, the prime minister of Ethiopia, launched an offensive against rebels from the region of Tigray in November. According to him, the attack was in response to Tigrayan forces attacking military camps, but his government had feuded with TPLF, the main political party in Tigray, for months.
In June, the TPLF captured much of Tigray from the army, according to the Telegraph. Afterward, occupying ethnic Amhara forces from the neighboring region, which still controlled Humera in the region, decided to ‘exterminate’ and ‘cleanse’ all Tigrayans in the area. In recent days, Amhara forces have searched door-to-door in Tigray to round up anyone of Tigrayan heritage. The forces have taken thousands of Tigrayan men, women, and children to makeshift concentration camps, cut off their limbs, mutilated their bodies, and buried them in mass graves, the paper reported.
A person who spoke to the Telegraph said he fled one of the camps after convincing the army that he was not full Tigrayan. ‘We were 250 detainees. The Amhara forces take detainees every night and bring in new ones. The ones they take never return,’ he told the paper. In August, dozens of bloated and deformed bodies washed up in the Tekeze River.
After the incident gained international attention, Amhara forces started dumping the bodies elsewhere. Thousands have been killed on both sides of the conflict since it began last year, and millions have been displaced. It is difficult to verify the true number of deaths in the region due to limited internet access. It has been reported that a man-made famine has ravaged Tigray, causing thousands of deaths. As a result of a ‘de facto humanitarian aid blockade,’ the already severe humanitarian crisis is likely to worsen.