At least 80 people were killed on Tuesday when unidentified gunmen stormed through a village in western Ethiopia in the latest of a series of ethnically driven massacres in the area, the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission and witnesses said on Wednesday.
The massacre in Benishangul-Gumuz region, along the border with Sudan, is the latest challenge to the regime of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who came to power in 2018 promising to unite Ethiopia but has struggled to contain a growing wave of ethnic violence.
The attacks further threaten the stability of Africa’s second-most populous nation at a time when Mr. Abiy is already embroiled in an escalating conflict in the northern Tigray region, where he launched a major military operation on Nov. 4 that he said was intended to capture defiant local leaders.
Analysts say the campaign in Tigray has hampered Mr. Abiy’s ability to stem clashes like the recent one in Benishangul-Gumuz, because it has forced him to divert soldiers from across Ethiopia to Tigray. As a result, ethnic clashes that had already been growing for months have only gotten worse.