18/08/2022

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Hunger strike: Jailed Ethiopian opposition leaders protest

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Imprisoned senior leaders of a major opposition party in Ethiopia are refusing meals as a way of protesting what they describe as “poor conditions” inside jail.

Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) executive committee members Mikael Boran and Kenasa Ayana, and its spokesperson Bate Urgessa, are among those who have been on hunger strike for several days, the party says in a statement.

the statement adds, some of the leaders “are poorly handled and served” while others are “being deprived of food, water and other basic humanitarian needs” the party says.

It says the health of the leaders is deteriorating daily, and their families are unable to visit them.

The authorities are yet to respond to the accusations.

Most of OLF’s senior leaders have been imprisoned for more than two years on accusations of inciting violence and terrorism.

Some of them are behind bars despite court orders for them to be released.

The government has recently released opposition leaders of other political parties to pave the way for a proposed national dialogue.

OLF says it has not been invited to be part of the dialogue and is demanding the release of its leaders to take part in the talks.