Ethiopia - April 2023
Head of ruling party in Ethiopia’s Amhara region shot dead
On 27 April, the head of the ruling Prosperity Party in the Amhara region, Gairma Yeshitila, was shot dead alongside four others in what the federal security agencies claim to have been an attempt by Amhara nationalists to overthrow the regional government. The security agencies responded to the shootings by arresting 47 people they allege to have been involved in the attempted overthrow. Among those arrested were several public figures, media personalities and scholars reported to have Amhara nationalist loyalties. These developments took place against a backdrop of rising tensions between Amhara nationalists and the federal government, as the latter pushed through security sector reforms disbanding Ethiopia’s regional forces (a move strongly opposed by the nationalists). Earlier in April, the reforms had triggered violent clashes between the federal forces and militant Amhara nationalists, which claimed the lives of two aid workers.