50 killed in Ethiopia protests over singer’s death
London, July 1, 2020 (AltAfrica)-At least 50 people were killed in Ethiopia’s Oromiya region in protests following the fatal shooting of a popular singer, a regional spokesman said on Wednesday.
Musician Haacaaluu Hundeessaa was shot dead on Monday night in what police said was a targeted killing. Protests broke out the next morning in the capital and other cities in the Oromiya region.
The dead included protesters and members of the security forces, spokesman Getachew Balcha said. Some businesses had also been set on fire.
“We were not prepared for this,” he said.
Police said late on Tuesday that a policeman was also killed in Addis Ababa, and three blasts had killed and injured an unspecified number of people.
The 34-year-old was known for political songs in support of the ethnic Oromo group’s fight against repression.
Haacaaluu’s songs provided a soundtrack to a generation of young protesters whose three years of street demonstrations culminated in the resignation of the previous prime minister and the beginning of an era with greater political freedoms.
Despite being Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group, the Oromos have long complained of being marginalised, both economically and politically.
His funeral is due to take place on Thursday. RFI