Thousands Flee Violence in Ethiopia’s Tigray as Prime Minister Appoints New Leader for Region

Ethiopia’s weeklong military siege on the country’s Tigray region has led to an upheaval of the local government, a day after thousands fled Ethiopia into Sudan in the midst of a mass killing.   
 
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed announced Friday parliament appointed a new leader in the Tigray region after stripping the northern region’s President Debretsion Gebremichael,  and leaders of the political party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, of immunity from prosecution.
 
The leaders in the northern Tigray region are accused of treason and terrorism.
 
Tigray’s government is under siege after Ethiopia’s federal forces battled forces of the People’s Liberation Front, resulting in hundreds of civilians being killed in what Amnesty International described in a report as a massacre earlier this week.  
 
The United Nations is already warning of a possible humanitarian crisis because of the exodus of some 11,000 people into neighboring Sudan to escape the violence.
 
Tensions have been building in the region since September 9 when Tigray, the northernmost of Ethiopia’s nine regional states, defiantly held a regional election after Ahmed postponed the polls, citing the COVID-19 pandemic.

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