MORE than 90 people were killed in Ethiopia after the violent death of a popular singer sparked unrest across the country, state media reported on Thursday.
Ethiopian singer Hachalu Hundessa was shot and killed in the capital Addis Ababa on Monday, with his supporters blaming security forces and “a political motive” for the crime.
“Eighty-one people died in the restive Oromia Region during violent protests sparked by the shooting,’’ the regional head of police told government-affiliated news outlet Walta Info.
Eight residents and two police officers were killed in the capital Addis Ababa since the protests started, the head of police said on national television.
Hachalu was meanwhile buried in his home town of Ambo, in central Oromia Region.
A live broadcast on national television showed Hachalu being buried according to Ethiopian orthodox tradition, amid tight security.
Only a small crowd of emotional family members and mourners were allowed to be present as the singer’s casket was lowered into the ground next to a church in Ambo.
Hachalu’s music is considered by many to advocate the rights of Ethiopia’s Oromo ethnic group, the largest in the multi-ethnic state, who have long believed they are being neglected by the government.