Ethiopia's government announced a state of emergency on 4th August 2023 following days of clashes between the federal security forces and local ethnic militia in the northern Amhara region.
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed's office declared a state of emergency in the second most populous region, Amhara. Amhara is one of Ethiopia's 11 regions. Each region of Ethiopia has its own police force and militia.
Intense fighting broke out between the Ethiopian National Defence Force (ENDF) and the Fano militia group earlier in the week. Both forces were once allies and fought side by side in the Tigray conflict, but now the federal government wants to centralise power.
The government said it wanted to integrate local defence forces into the police and the national army, which sparked protests in the region in April. Protesters said the government's plans to integrate forces would leave their region vulnerable to attack from other regions.
The dismantling and integration of Amhara special forces are part of the federal government's peace deal with Tigrayan forces.
The conflict between the Ethiopian National Defence Force and the Tigray’s People Liberation Front (TPLF), representing the northern region of Tigray, started in 2020. A peace deal was signed between the Ethiopian government and the TPLF in November 2022, which brought an end to the hostility. As part of the peace deal, the Amhara militia was to be dismantled and integrated with the national forces.
It is a landlocked country in the Horn of Africa.
The Horn of Africa is the easternmost part of Africa consisting of Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, and Somalia.
Ethiopia is bounded by Eritrea to the north, Djibouti to the northeast, Somalia to the east, Kenya to the south, and South Sudan and Sudan to the west.
Capital: Addis Ababa (means New Flower).
Prime Minister: Abiy Ahmed