Armed men kill dozens in Ethiopia

Apr 16, 2016, 7:14 PM EDT
Refugees from South Sudan at Kule Camp in Gambella region of Ethiopia.
(Source: UNICEF Ethiopia/flickr)

Ethiopia says armed men have killed 140 people near its border with South Sudan and abducted at least 39 children.

The BBC reports:

Ethiopia's Communications Minister Getachew Reda said the attackers were members of South Sudan's Murle tribe. He said security forces were chasing the attackers and had killed 60 so far. Ethiopia is hosting thousands of South Sudanese refugees who fled the 2013 clashes that began when President Salva Kiir sacked his deputy Riek Machar, accusing him of plotting a coup. Mr Machar denied the charges, but then mobilised a rebel force to fight the government. He is due to return to the capital Juba to form a transitional government as part of a peace deal.

Al Jazeera writes:

The attackers had no relation to South Sudan's army or rebel forces who fought the government in Juba in a civil war that has killed tens of thousands of people, a statement from the government communications office said. David Shinn, a professor of International Relations at George Washington University and former US ambassador to Ethiopia, said the region has a long history of ethnic conflict originating on both sides of the Ethiopia-South Sudan border. "The border is porous and movement back and forth between South Sudan and Ethiopia is common," he told Al Jazeera. "The conflict in South Sudan has resulted in refugees moving into Ethiopia. Rebel groups can also move across Gambela region. It is not surprising there are occasional local outbreaks of violence in this area."