Ethiopia: Opposition Criticizes Verdict in Killing

By JASON McLURE, NYT

A leader of Ethiopia’s opposition alliance on Monday criticized a court verdict in the stabbing death of an opposition parliamentary candidate, accusing the ruling party of intimidating a key witness. The candidate, Aregawi Gebre-Yohannes, was killed March 2 at his restaurant in the Tigray region. The opposition said the candidate was killed by supporters of the ruling party. The killer, Tsegie Berhane, was sentenced last week to 15 years in prison, said Shimeles Kemal, a government spokesman. Mr. Tsegie was granted leniency because he had confessed, Mr. Shimeles said, adding that the accused was not a member of a party. “It was an arranged and orchestrated court,” said Gebru Asrat, a leader of the Arena party, part of the opposition alliance. He said witnesses who testified had been “involved in the killing.”