Ethiopian National Defence Force on Tuesday announced decision to establish two additional regiments in a bid to deter looming internal and external threats.The Force’s decision comes amid allegations that the nation’s security forces have failed to maintain law and order as religious and ethnic based attacks continue to claim several lives in different parts of the country.
At least 150 ethnic Amhara, Agew and Shinasha people have been killed by gun men since last September in Metekel Zone of Benishangul-Gumuz region of western Ethiopia.
The government has begun arming some members of those ethnic groups since last Friday after government security forces failed to defend the civilians from looming attacks in which members of the regional officials were allegedly involved.
“The government has created a strong security force that can defend the nation from any possible attacks after it conducted rigorous security reform during the past two years,” Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed told MPs on Monday.
He said the security forces have managed to foil planned attacks against religious and traditional celebrations conducted in Addis Ababa last September.
Defense Force Chief of Staff General Adem Mohammed said the new regiments will be stationed in the capital Addis Ababa and the nation’s northern city – Bahir Dar to independently protect the security of the country and bring sustainable peace.
The new regiments are formed after peace and security threats were analyzed, the Chief of Staff said. The new regiments will increase the total regiments the nation has to six.
The chief of staff said rigorous security reform has been underway over the past two years in order to establish strong peacekeeping force equipped with modern technology to defend the country from any threat.