ICHIREE Releases Final Report Prior to Termination, Calls for International Vigilance On Ethiopia’s Conflict. The final report from the International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia (ICHIREE), which investigated human rights abuses during the two-year conflict, was made public today.
The study details the shocking brutality against civilians since the conflict started in November 2020 and charges all sides of possibly committing war crimes and crimes against humanity.
The Commission charged regional militias with systematic mass killings, widespread rape and sexual enslavement of women and girls, forced starvation, forced displacement, and arbitrary detention of civilians in the report issued after the Human Rights Council’s 54th session.
In what commission head Mohamed Chande Othman called a “staggering scale and continuity of violence” against people caught in the crossfire, it accused Tigrayan troops of waging their campaign of murders, sexual assaults, looting, and devastation.
The panel said it did not have the time or resources to determine if any possible genocide or crimes of extermination had taken place, even though it acknowledged that its findings were probably simply the tip of the iceberg. But Othman emphasized the need for more thorough investigations to determine the truth and establish legal responsibility.
The panel warned that the path to justice must continue after today’s presentation even though its task was completed. It voiced deep worry about the Eritrean soldiers’ ongoing presence in Tigray, adding that their crimes before and after recent ceasefire agreements highlight how impunity spawns new atrocities.
Expert on the Commission Radhika Coomaraswamy claimed that chances of local accountability are “extremely remote,” leaving victims needing regional and global action. According to fellow expert Steven Ratner, the early termination of the Commission’s work was a severe blow to the victims, and he emphasized that “it is essential that this work continues.”
Othman pleaded with the world community to remember the victims of the fight. He demanded expanded oversight of local conditions as well as global prosecution jurisdiction. The Commission stated that its final report cannot be the last word due to the grave potential of more crimes if the situation is not addressed. Othman highlighted that justice and responsibility are essential for long-lasting peace.
Despite several requests for its extension from top human rights groups throughout the globe, the draft resolution to prolong the International Commission of Human Rights Experts on Ethiopia was not renewed and missed its deadline on October 4.
Members of the Commission raised concerns in the weeks leading up to this deadline about the danger that atrocities would continue in the absence of impartial investigations into the nation’s continuous violations of human rights. Given Ethiopia’s unstable political situation, they voiced grave worry over the possibility of more crimes against civilians.
International human rights organizations emphasized the critical need for the UN Human Rights Council to use its authority to support the prevention of rights abuses and provide assistance in situations of emergency, as those described in the Commission’s most recent report.