Journalist Getnet Ashagre Photo: Social Media

Addis Abeba – Journalist Getnat Ashagre, editor-in-chief of Amhara Voice Media, has been detained by security forces on Sunday 26 March from his residence in Addis Abeba, Emebet Tadesse, his sister, told Addis Standard.

Getenet was picked up by security forces as he was returning home and was told he was needed for an investigation, according to Emebet. All of his work belongings that were at home have also been taken away by the security forces.

Emebet visited her brother at the Federal Police Criminal Investigation Office today and was told that he was being investigated.

Journalist Gobeze Sisay, his colleague, confirmed to Addis Standard that Getnet was detained by security personnel and that several pieces of media equipment had also been taken along, ostensibly for an investigation.

Gobeze claimed that recently, online media organizations’ equipment, particularly cameras and laptops, were being stolen; and “considering this we recommended Getnet to take the equipment home and bring them along on workdays” he said.
He further says that the reason for Getnet’s detention has not been disclosed yet and that he was merely brought into detention because he was needed for an investigation. “There is none that could lead to his detention,” he said.

Getnet has been covering attacks against Amhara communities in Wollega, western Oromia, and subsequent displacements as well as the demolition of houses by officials in the newly established Sheger city of the Oromia regional state, on the outskirts of Addis Abeba. Victims accuse the officials of ethnic prejudice during the demolishing campaign.

Earlier, two media personalities, Tewodros Asfaw, journalist and political analyst and Deacon Yosef Ketema, a journalist for EOTC Afaan Oromoo broadcast service, have been detained by security forces last month in relation to the schism within the Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church (EOTC) and the ensuing unrest. They were later released on bail.

In this regard, the Committee for the Protection of Journalists (CPJ) urged the Ethiopian authorities to immediately release journalist Yene Wolde, Gurage Media Network, and prevent from detaining any press personnel merely for their work.

Voice of Amhara Media is operating after securing licenses from the Ethiopian Broadcasting Authority and Getnet used to work at a television station called Yegna. AS

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