Ethiopia using rape as a strategy in Tigray war – Amnesty

The Ethiopian military and its allies are responsible for widespread sexual violence against women in Tigray, using rape as a strategy of war, Amnesty International says.

The scale of violations during the nine-month conflict in the north of the country amounts to war crimes, the human rights group says.

One woman reported being gang-raped in front of her children.

Ethiopia’s government says the report is based on “flawed methodology”.

The foreign ministry accused Amnesty of waging “sensationalised attacks and smear campaigns” against Ethiopia, saying the country condemned sexual violence in all circumstances.

Amnesty said it had “overwhelming evidence” to show such violence had been rampant since the start of the conflict.

It began last November when the region’s Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) party stormed a military base after falling out with the prime minister over his political reforms.

The rights group interviewed 63 women and children from Tigray who said they had been raped by Ethiopian troops, their Eritrean allies, or by pro-government fighters from the neighbouring region of Amhara.