Amnesty Uses Fake Picture to Accuse Gov’t of Detaining People from Tigray


July 17/2021(ENA)Amnesty International deceptively used a fake picture for its recent fabricated report that accused the government of Ethiopia of detaining ethnic Tigrayans.

The group issued a press release on July 16, 2021 stating that “Police in Addis Ababa have arbitrarily arrested and detained dozens of Tigrayans without due process,” and published pictures to support its fabricated allegation.

However, the picture used by the organization for its unreliable allegation is taken during the 6th general elections by an AFP photographer.

Amanuel Sileshi, the photographer who took the picture, told the Ethiopian News Agency that Amnesty International used his photo that was taken in Addis Ababa during the 6th general election held on the 21 of June.

The photographer told ENA that the picture that depicts the activities of security personnel conducting checks before the voters enter to polling station located in Addis Ababa locally known as Abuware at 6am early in the morning.

The caption of the photo published during the event reads: “A police officer checks people who are in line to cast their ballot before polls open in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on June 21, 2021, during Ethiopia’s legislative and regional elections. Amanuel Silewshi/ AFP”

The photograph shows the peaceful conduct of the election and voters who have been waiting to cast their ballot.

However, Amnesty used the picture deliberately to its false accusation to tarnish Ethiopia’s image and undermine the efforts of the government in protecting the safety of Tigrayans.

“The way Amnesty International used the picture misleads the audience,” the photographer stated and added that “AFP did nothing wrong in this case. The media organization had published the picture for its election coverage on the voting day. The only problem lies on Amnesty International that used AFP’s pictures wrongly to manipulate the context of the situation. And this kind of act is a serious crime that would drag people into conflict.”

Though, AFP has been urging Amnesty to remove the pictures from its entire media platforms, no responses are made by the organization so far, Amanuel said.

Sileshi said “If immediate action is not taken to remove the pictures, AFP will be forced to prosecute Amnesty International for its crime”.