50 killed in protest over brutal murder of popular singer

No fewer than 50 people have been killed in Ethiopia after the death of a popular singer sparked huge protests in the Oromia region.

Thousands of fans had gathered to mourn Hachalu Hundessa, who was shot dead on Monday night while driving.

Police say 35 people, including prominent politician Jawar Mohammed, have been arrested, even as the motive for Hachalu’s killing remains unclear, TheBBC writes.

Hachalu, 34, recently said that he had received death threats. He will be buried on Thursday.

His songs focused on the rights of the country’s Oromo ethnic group and became anthems in a wave of protests that led to the downfall of the previous prime minister in 2018.

The authorities shut down the internet on Tuesday in parts of the country as the protests against his killing spread across Oromia region.

The military was deployed in the capital, Addis Ababa, while armed gangs roamed the streets.

Mr Jawar Oromo, media mogul and leader of the Federalist Congress party, has led calls for more rights for the Oromo, Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group, who have been politically marginalised by previous governments.

He supported reformist Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, himself an Oromo, but has since become an ardent critic.

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