Ethiopia sentences 8 leaders and members of Rebel group to death

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By De Birhan 

April 26, 2013

An Ethiopian court has sentenced eight members and leaders of  the Gambela People’s Liberation Movement (GPLM), a rebel group in Gambella, Southern tip of Ethiopia, to death.  The Federal High Court Fourth Criminal Bench also sentenced the first defendant, Oumed Oket, to death.

According to reports by  state owned media, of the 14 members of the accused,  the remaining six were sentenced from nine  to 21 years.

The charges read that the GPLM, which the Government labels as a ‘terrorist organisation’, killed a member of the Ethiopian Defense Force and two other members of the local Police in Abobo Woreda last year. Similarly  they have shot and killed 19 civilian passengers by seriously wounding 9 others. “The terrorists were charged for killing two Pakistani nationals working on a Saudi Star Farm in the Region and 28 other civilians, for destroying and looting properties, disrupting development and putting pressure on the government” the prosecutors charges read.

Gambella People Liberation Movement/Force (GPLM) has been active since 2000 in Gambella Region and has been mentioned in reports for executing cross border attacks.