State of Emergency to Remain in Force for Six Months: Justice Minister Gideon Timotios

The state of emergency declared to be implemented in the Amhara Region will remain in force for the next six months, Justice Minister Gideon Timotios announced today.

The decree issued to be implemented in the Amhara Region will also be implemented in other areas of the country as needed, he added.

The justice minister gave clarification on the State of Emergency Proclamation No. 6/2015 issued by the Council of Ministers to protect public peace and security at the 23rd regular meeting of the Council of Ministers today.

According to him, it has become impossible to control the armed activity being carried out in the region by the regular law enforcement and has immensely disrupted the economic and social activities of the region.

The minister further pointed out that the Amhara regional administration has faced a breach of security that cannot be dealt with by the regular law enforcement system.

Stressing that the violation of security has caused pressure on the inhabitants of the region, Gideon said the appropriate legal framework was established and the necessary steps taken by the federal government based on the Constitution.

Based on this, federal security institutions and the Council of Ministers have reviewed and concluded that it is necessary to declare a state of emergency in order to protect public peace and order, the minister elaborated.

He explained that it is clearly indicated that the state of emergency is primarily applicable to Amhara region.

However, Gideon pointed out that measures taken to maintain public peace and tranquility will be implemented in any part of the country when necessary to stop any activity that aggravates the security problem at the region or national level.

The minister disclosed that a State of Emergency Command Post has been established for the implementation of the proclamation.

The command post will be headed by the Director-General of the National Intelligence and Security Service, and it will be accountable to the Prime Minister.

The members, structure and organization of the command post will be decided by the Prime Minister, according to the justice minister.

The command post is given the authority to declare curfew, block road for a certain period of time, close down or terminate service facility and transport.

It has also been given the authority to arrest suspects that attempt or prepare to commit crimes against the government and the constitutional system and violate the emergency decree and obstruct its implementation without a court order.

The state of emergency, which will remain in effect for the coming six months, can be terminated before the expiration period if the House of People’s Representatives determine so.

Source: Ethiopian News Agency