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UN consultants say Ethiopia’s battle and Tigray preventing left over 10,000 survivors of sexual violence

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GENEVA — U.N.-backed human rights consultants say battle crimes proceed in Ethiopia regardless of a peace deal signed almost a yr in the past to finish a devastating battle that has additionally engulfed the nation’s Tigray area. The violence has left at the very least 10,000 folks affected by rape and different sexual violence — largely ladies and ladies.

The consultants’ report, revealed Monday, comes in opposition to the backdrop of an unsure future for the group of investigators who wrote it: The Human Rights Council is about to determine early subsequent month whether or not to increase the group’s mandate within the face of efforts by the Ethiopian authorities of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to finish it.

The violence erupted in November 2020, centering largely — although not completely — on the northern Tigray area, which for months was shut off from the surface world. The report cites atrocities by all sides within the battle, together with mass killings, rape, hunger, and destruction of colleges and medical services.

Mohamed Chande Othman, chairman of the worldwide fee of human rights consultants on Ethiopia, mentioned the state of affairs stays “extraordinarily grave” regardless of a peace accord signed in November.

”Whereas the signing of the settlement might have largely silenced the weapons, it has not resolved the battle within the north of the nation, specifically in Tigray, nor has it caused any complete peace,” he mentioned.

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“Violent confrontations at the moment are at a near-national scale, with alarming studies of violations in opposition to civilians within the Amhara area and on-going atrocities in Tigray,” Othman added.

The report mentioned troops from neighboring Eritrea and militia members from Ethiopia’s Amhara militia proceed to commit grave violations in Tigray, together with the “systematic rape and sexual violence of ladies and ladies.”

Commissioner Radhika Coomaraswamy mentioned the presence of Eritrean troops in Ethiopia confirmed not solely “an entrenched coverage of impunity, but additionally continued assist for and tolerance of such violations by the federal authorities.”

“Total households have been killed, kin compelled to look at horrific crimes in opposition to their family members, whereas entire communities have been displaced or expelled from their houses,” she mentioned.

Citing consolidated estimates from seven well being facilities in Tigray alone, the fee mentioned greater than 10,000 survivors of sexual violence sought care between the beginning of the battle and July this yr.

However accountability, and belief within the justice system in Ethiopia, have been missing.

The fee mentioned it is aware of of solely 13 accomplished and 16 pending army court docket {cases} addressing sexual violence dedicated throughout the battle.

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