More on the Burnings of Churches in Ethiopia (Triggered by Allegations of Desecration of a Koran)

The Voice of America reports further developments and more details related to the story I noted yesterday:

Police in Ethiopia have arrested 130 people described as religious extremists in connection with a series of church burnings in a Muslim-majority area….

Ethiopian government spokesman Shimelis Kemal told VOA two Christians had been killed in the incidents. In a telephone interview, he said police reinforcements had moved in and restored order.

“In Jimma area, some extremists and some fundamentalists have instigated some people to burn a few prayer places, praying places, and this has been investigated by police and those who are suspected to have set fire on those churches have been apprehended,” he said.

Shimelis said 130 suspects had been charged with instigating religious hatred and violence.

One political activist working in Jimma, who asked not to be identified, quoted Muslim residents in the region as saying the attacks erupted after reports spread that a Christian had desecrated a Koran. That information could not be confirmed….

Moga Firisa, head of the opposition Oromo Federal Democratic Movement and a native of the region, said he was conducting his own investigation. He said the burnings had occurred over a period of several days beginning late last week….

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