Ethiopia—It has been gathered that 16 women from the town of Nifas Mewcha in Ethiopia, were raped by fighters from Tigray People’s Front (TPLF) during the group’s attack on the town in Mid-August 2021.
Survivors described being raped at gunpoint, robbed, and subjected to physical and verbal assaults by TPLF fighters, who also destroyed and looted medical facilities in the town.
The TPLF took control of Nifa Mewcha, in Amhara’s Gaint District, for nine days between 12 and 21 August 2021, as part of an ongoing offensive into parts of the Amhara and Afar regions.
According to regional government officials, More than 70 women reported to authorities that they were raped in Nifas and Mewcha during this period.
“The testimonies were heard from survivors describe despicable acts by TPLF fighters that amount to war crimes, and potentially crime against humanity,” Said an official from Amnesty Internationals.
“TPLF fighters must immediately stop all human rights abuses and violations of international humanitarian law, including sexual and gender-based violence. The leadership must make clear that such abuses will not be tolerated and remove suspected perpetrators from their ranks.”
“I suspected their intentions, and I sent away my daughters to stay from the house. The soldiers told me to bring them home, I told them they won’t come. Then they started to insult me, they were saying Ahara is a donkey, Amhara is useless, one of them told the other to stop insulting me.
“He said she is our mother we don’t have to insult her. They forced him to leave the house and three of them stayed back at my home. Then they raped me in turns.” Spoke to one of the rape victims.
TPLF fighters also subjected the women to degrading ethnic slurs, such as ‘donkey Amhara, and ‘greedy Amhara.’ In some case, the TPLF told women they were raping them in revenge in revenge for the rape of Tigrayan women by Federal government forces.