Ethiopia’s opposition satellite channel Esat TV reports that more than 100 people have been killed in renewed ethnic attacks in the restive area of Metekel in the country’s western Benishangul-Gumuz region.
The attacks were carried out on Monday and Tuesday.
The report quotes “reliable sources” as saying that 130 civilians were killed by Gumuz gunmen in various districts in Metekel on Monday.
“The area residents who were collecting the bodies told Esat that during the Dibate district attack [in Metekel], the armed bandits were only targeting the houses of Amhara and Agew nationals and killed [many], including women and children. They also said that the number could rise,” the report said.
Last month, more than 200 people were killed in an ethnic attack in the same region. The incident took place hours after Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed had visited the region to assess the security situation.
Security forces killed 42 of the attackers in a subsequent operation as the authorities placed several districts in the region under military control.
The instability poses a threat to the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, which has been built on the Blue Nile in Benishangul-Gumuz – and is the subject of tense negotiations over how it will affect Sudan and Egypt, countries which also use the Nile waters.
When it is fully operational in several years’ time it will become Africa’s largest hydroelectric plant.