Victims and their families say Ethiopian security officers have been systematically extorting and abusing Tigrayan civilians held without charge, including minors and the elderly, since a wave of nationwide mass arrests began last year.

Victims and their families say Ethiopian security officers have been systematically extorting and abusing Tigrayan civilians held without charge, including minors and the elderly, since a wave of nationwide mass arrests began last year.

Estimates say, thousands of civilians have been rounded up since the conflict between rebels from the country’s northern Tigray region and Ethiopia’s national army began 15 months ago.

At least 1,000 Tigrayans, including United Nations staff, were arrested in two weeks in November last year in the capital Addis Ababa.

The Ethiopian government says it only targets those suspected of supporting the rebels.

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