Ethiopian leaders were accused of targeting civilians during a fight with government forces on Monday by a group of rebels opposed to the government. Reported a massacre by rebels.
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed's office did not provide deaths, but the Amharic Society of the United States quoted ground sources in the Associated Press, killing 150 to 160 people in an attack. He said he believed he could have been.
AP was unable to independently verify the number of casualties by the association, which stated that Amharics were targeted and the killings began earlier in the day.
"Members of the Shen Group fleeing attacks by (government) security forces are endangering the citizens of West Werega," Abby said in a tweet on Monday to track rebels. He added that the operation was underway. "Citizens of the Kerenwellega region of Oromia have been slaughtered."
Prime Minister's announcement accuses hundreds of civilians in the Amhara community of OLA, which the government calls Shen. The attack took place three weeks after being killed in the same area. Rebel groups denied the accusation and instead accused government troops and local militias of carrying out the attack.
Telephone communication with remote areas was cut off from noon.
As the wave of ethnic unrest continues in Africa's second most populous country, killings will pressure the Abby government to do more to protect civilians. Due to political, historical and ethnic tensions, attacks targeting minorities nationwide have increased in recent years.
The Amhara people, the second largest ethnic group in Ethiopia but a minority elsewhere, have been repeatedly targeted.
In the last three years alone, dozens of people have been killed in attacks in the Benishangrugums and Oromia regions. Witnesses told AP last month that more than 400 civilians were killed in a June 18 attack on the Amharic people in the Thor region of Oromia.