HAMDAYET, Sudan – Ruthlessness has been rooted in the skin and mind of the Tigers, sheltering thousands of people within sight of their hometown from which they fled in northern Ethiopia.
They arrived in heat above 100 F, bearing the pain of a gunshot wound, a torn vagina, a back wound. Less visible memories: Dozens of corpses litter the banks of the river. A fighter raped a woman one by one because they spoke her own language Children weak from hunger were left behind.
Now, for the first time, they have brought evidence of an official attempt on what is known as genocide in the form of a new identity card that eliminated all traces of the Tigers, as The Associated Press confirmed by the refugees. Nine threats from different communities Written in a non-native language issued by entities from other ethnic groups, the card is the latest in evidence of a push by Ethiopia and allies to destroy the taigreyans.
Amhara officials in charge of nearby Humera have now taken Seid Mussa Omar̵7;s original identity card showing Tigrayan’s identity and burned away his new card reviewed by the AP, issued in January, showing Amharic. Amharic seal and small heart border
“I kept it to show the world,” Seid said. “This is genocide … their goal is to erase Tigrey.”
What started as a political dispute in one of Africa’s most powerful nations has turned into a campaign against the Tai Gray minority, according to an AP interview with 30 refugees in Sudan. Awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, Abiy Ahmed is accused of collaborating with Abiy’s ethnic group – his mother Amhara – and soldiers from neighboring Eritrea who are hostile to the now runaway leader of Tigray to punish about 6 million people
Ethiopia claims life in Tigrey is returning to normal. But refugees said abuse continued. Almost all describe killing, rape, and destruction of many crops that are not assisted by food could lead to the region’s famine.
For months now, Tigray has been largely sealed from the world, with power cuts and telecommunication access, leaving little to support claims that tens of thousands of people may have died.
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said last month: The “genocide” took place in West Tigrey. It was the first time a senior official in the international community had openly described the situation. This term refers to the forced expulsion of the region by expulsion and other violence, often including murder and rape.
The refugees said the Amharic authorities had taken over the community and ordered the Tigers away.Humera’s Goitom Hagos told the AP that he saw thousands of Tygrays loaded into trucks and did not know what had happened. Up to them
Some tigrays were ordered to accept the identity of the Amharic people or leave, the refugees said.
The Tigray conflict began in November as a result of past and present political clashes. Tigray leaders have dominated the country’s government for almost three decades, creating a regional state system based on ethnicity. But Abey took office in 2018 and moved to centralized power. He deprived the leader of Tigray and made peace with Eritrea, receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.
Challenging leader Tygray sees the federal government break the law after last year’s elections delayed and held their own vote. The government launched a military offensive, saying the Tigray forces had attacked a military base. Witnesses said that the Amharic and Eritrean forces divided the majority of the Tigers between them.
Ethiopia said it denies “any ideas and practices regarding genocide.” A spokesman for the Amharic region declined to comment.
The killing continues. In early March, Alem Mebrahtu, 30, attempted to cross the Tekeze River between parts of Tigray under Eritrean and Amhara separated from her children in a conflict she had heard they were in Sudan.
She said there were about 50 corpses littering the banks of the river. “Some were face down. Someone looked up into the sky. ”Fatigue pressed deeply under her eyes, she began to cry.
She reluctantly tried to learn Amharic language in order to defend herself.
“Their goal is not to leave Tigrayan,” she said.
Refugees say rape is widespread. One woman said that when she returned to her looted home in Humera, she was seized by an Amharic-speaking volunteer member. She asked them to speak Tigrinya and they hurt her.
“Claiming to be Amharic and we’ll return you home and find a husband for you,” said the men, “but if you claim to be Tigrey, we will rape you again.”
Now that she is pregnant, the AP did not name those who were sexually abused.
The United Nations said more than 500 rapes have been reported in the town of Ty Gray to health care workers. But militants destroyed most of Tigray’s health facilities, leaving little help.
And more pain to follow
Almost all refugees describe a worrisome shortage of food. Most saw crops plundered or cremated. Farmer Kidu Gebregirgis said the Amhara harvested about 5,000 kilograms (5.5 short tons) of sorghum from his fields and hauled them away, a work that took two weeks.
The conflict started shortly before harvesting in most farmland. Now the planting season is approaching.
“But there are no seeds,” Kidu said. “There’s nothing to start again.”
Tigrays through rural communities describe people who are starving, often elderly, begging outside the church. Sometimes they do too.
Again, ethnicity is important.Belaynesh Beyene of Dansha said she had to speak Amharic when she reached her home west of Tigray to find food.
Ethiopia, under international pressure, said food aid was distributed to more than 4 million people in Tigray. The refugees disagree.
Maza Girmay, 65, said she heard that food was being distributed, so she went to the government office in Bahkar to ask.
“They told me that ‘Come home, you are Tigreyan,’ ”she said.
Colonel and Tigray Bahre Tebeje worries that famine kills more people than waging war.
The Tigers continued to arrive daily at the border post, where Sudanese soldiers watched the uninhabited territory.One evening, the AP saw three approaching.
In Sudan, tigers are registered and ask for ethnicity. They are free to answer only once.