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Defense Forces to investigate civilians death in west Gondar

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Addis Ababa, January 12, 2019 (FBC) – Ministry of Defense Forces of Ethiopia said it will investigate the death of civilians in west Gondar zone of Amhara regional state this week.

Deputy Chief of Staff of the Defense Forces, General Berhanu Jula told journalists that the incident happened when the defense force soldiers were escorting trucks belonged to Sur Construction.

Due to the complaints by Gende Wuha dwellers and based on their demand the trucks be searched, they (trucks) were stopped,he said.

As members of the Defense Force were trying to consulting with the locals, gunmen opened fire and wounded two members of the Defense Force.The soldiers were discharging their responsibilities.

He said Defense Forces are disciplined and never fire on innocent people and “I don’t believe that the security forces have committed the killing.”

The incident needs a thorough investigation to apprehend the masterminds. Yet, there is no clear information as to who should take responsibility for the incident, he added.

An investigation team drawn from various stakeholders will be dispatched and necessary measures will be taken based on the findings of the investigation, he said.

“If the killing was committed by members of the defense forces, they will be accountable and the defense force will compensate families of the victims,” he said.

General Berhanu further said the defense forces have also been disarming the fighters of Shene wing of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) led by Dawud Ibsa in west Oromia regional state.

Although the faction pledged to engage in peaceful struggle when it returned home after two decades of exile, it has been committing many killings and robberies in the region, he said.

He also condemned provocative acts of political forces who mobilized the youth and residents of Zalambessa and Shire towns in Tigray regional state to block the movement of the army.

The army solved the problem peacefully as these “were not the intentions of the public. And the residents asked the army apology for the unwarranted acts.”