Waiting for war: Vigilantes patrol Ethiopia’s capital as conflict intensifies

Thousands of volunteers in Addis Ababa have heeded a call to arms, but Tigrayans say they are being unfairly targeted and detained, reports Fred Harter

Monday 29 November 2021 18:16
<p>Volunteers conduct a night patrol in Addis Ababa</p>

Volunteers conduct a night patrol in Addis Ababa

Shortly after nightfall, a group of eight men gather on a street in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital. All are wearing hi-vis orange vests, some are carrying long sticks. Leading them is Habtamu Reta, a taxi driver who currently spends most nights patrolling his neighbourhood.

“We are here to avert attacks and the disruption of our community by covert agents,” he explains as he and his fellow volunteers prepare to set out for the night.

“This is not a normal time.”

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