Ethiopia: Fire Gutted Qilinto Prison, Over 20 Inmates Killed

qilinto prison fire
Deadly fires are being reported in several high-security prisons across Ethiopia lately. Over 20 inmates were feared dead following a fire breakout in Qilinto prison and an unknown numbers dead in Debre Tabor prison fire in a space of two days. (Photo: Addis Fortune)

By TesfaNews,

Over 20 prisoners were feared killed and many others injured after guards fired at inmates who were trying to flee fire that gutted the Qilinto maximum-security prison on Saturday night.

The intensive gunfire that ensued have created a tense situation among local residents in the area.

According to reports that are coming out of the capital, 22 bodies were taken to Paulos hospital. The death toll is expected to rise sharply after reports of 13 deaths at Tor Hailoch Hospital and 14 at Police Hospital have been reported.

Under the Federal Prison Administration, Qilinto hosts the country’s high profile political prisoners including senior leaders of the Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC).

The fate of these political and religious prisoners, however, remains unknown. There is heavy presence of security forces from the federal police around the scene and the prison remains cordoned off to public.

State media put the toll as one person dead, and six others injured. None of the victims have been identified by their names though.

Distressed families of prisoners are awaiting to hear the fate of their loved ones.

The TPLF dominated regime has a history of setting prisons on fire in order to use the chaos to eliminate critical political figures. During the aftermath of the 2005 election, the regime killed 163 prisoners at Kaliti prison using a riot as a pretext.

OFC deputy leader Mulatu Gemechu told the VOA Amharic program that his party is anxiously awaiting to hear the fate of its leader such as Bekele Gerba and other party members.

“We are seriously worried about the fate of our leaders, members and supporters of our party,” said Gemechu.

He said the Qilinto fire incident was reminiscent of the Ambo Prison and Gonder Prison tragedies. In both cases, prisoners who were trying to save themselves by fleeing the inferno were gunned down by security guards.

According to Addis Fortune sources, the federal police unit has taken over security of the Qilinto prison from Federal Prison Administration.

Fire gutted Debre Tabor prison in Gondar two days ago

27 thoughts on “Ethiopia: Fire Gutted Qilinto Prison, Over 20 Inmates Killed

  1. አንድ መታወቅ ያለበት ሃቅ በጥይት መተዉ ካልጣሉዋቸዉ በቀር በምንም አይነት መንገድ ቅሊንጦ ዉስጥ ሰዉ በእሳት ሊነድ እና ሊሞት አይችልም ። እሳቱ ተነሳ ከተባለበት ጊዜ ቢያንስ አንድ ሰዓት ቀደም ብሎ በቂሊንጦ እስር ቤት ጊቢ ውስጥ ከፍተኛ የተኩስ እርምታ ይሰማ እንደነበር በቦታው የነበሩ የእስረኞች ቤተሰባች ጨምሮ በርካቶች እማኝነታቸውን እየሰጡ ነው።

  2. Putting prisoners of conscience who don’t have any control over their physical and psychological safety in dangerous situation and jeopardizing their precious lives is a cardinal crime.

    This must be investigated by independent body established under auspices of human right related international body. This is a serious crime that would touch the society to the core and might lead to uncontrolled public anger. (#Geresu Tufa)

  3. Have you guys heard what Dr. Debretsion have said lately?

    He said his rag tag malelti army has the capacity to destroy the entire Africa let alone 30 million ethnic Amhara people. WTF …

    1. There will be time for everything. Uncultured Debre etc may spit what ever comes to their chicken brains. It won’t be that far before they start to sheet in their pants. Thanks to Eritreans they put them in Addis palace. They were unable to be a passenger in Oral let alone operate tanks & heavy machineries. Now they think they have the capacity to destroy the entire content. They are so stupid they don’t even analyse the status of their army. They have no army it’s a collection of untrained peasants, commanded by 3 or 4 years dropouts from agame.
      All it needs is some consistent bombardments for few hours. The rest is history

  4. እስከዛሬ ያልተነገረ ታሪክ ስለትግራይ ወጣቶች በኢትዮ ኤርትራ ጦርነት ጊዜ የተሰራ አሳፋሪ ታሪክ በዛንጊዜ ለውትድርና ከሄደው ወጣት አንደበት ስሙት። እንዲሁም ለመላው የትግሬ ህዝብ መልክት አለው

  5. Fire accident may have killed 20 in Qlinto prison but haven’t PFDJ thugs killed more than 20 ppl in Eraero, including Eritrea’s founding fathers!!

    Every article you post is full of hypocrisy.

    1. More than 450 Ethiopia soldiers abandon the dying regime and joined the people’s struggle in Gondar.

      450 soldiers have deserted Ethiopian regime’s army today in North Gondar and announced that they have joined the struggle launched by the people to remove the brutal regime.

      A representative of the defectors told ESAT on the phone that, the army, as it is made up of the sons and daughters of the Ethiopian people, should stand on their side at this critical time.

      He said the army, like the people, has suffered in the hands of the corrupt TPLF Generals and other top brass officers who are all Tigrayans and who inflicted untold misery on members of the army.

      Today’s desertion bring the total number to over 1000, just in the last ten days.

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