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AfDB Pulls Expats From Ethiopia After Arrests

It said two of its Addis Ababa-based staff had been "unlawfully arrested, physically assaulted, and detained for hours without charge or any official explanation" at the end of October.


A file photo of President of the Africa Development Bank, Akinwunmi Adesina.

 

The African Development Bank (AfDB) said Wednesday it was withdrawing international staff from Ethiopia after the arrest and assault of two staffers “by Ethiopian security forces” in October.

It said two of its Addis Ababa-based staff had been “unlawfully arrested, physically assaulted, and detained for hours without charge or any official explanation” at the end of October.

“This was a gross violation of their personal diplomatic immunities, rights, and privileges,” the Abidjan-based bank said in a statement.

The AfDB office in the Ethiopian capital will remain open with local staff, it added.

The bank did not identify the two victims.

But two diplomatic sources in Addis Ababa have previously confirmed reports that the bank’s Ethiopia director Abdul Kamara was one of them and that he had since left the country.

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“The situation is still not yet resolved in a satisfactory manner,” AfDB president Akinwumi Adesina was quoted as saying in the statement.

“The African Development Bank remains particularly concerned that the Ethiopian government has, to date, not shared with the Bank any report, or details of investigations into the incident,” Adesina added.

The Bank was created in 1964 to finance development efforts in Africa.

Apart from countries of the African Union, its membership includes about 20 non-African nations.

Its investments in Ethiopia as of the end of September came to $1.2 billion across 22 projects.

AFP