Police Arrested People for Not Wearing Mask: Human Right Commission Urged Their Release


The police have arrested thousands of people in Addis Ababa for not wearing masks. According to the Addis Ababa Police Commission, 1,300 people detained on Wednesday for an aligned violation of the Emergency Proclamation, Ethio FM reports.


The Emergency proclamation declared a month ago to curb the spread of COVID-19, states that wearing a mask is a must in public places where social distancing could be impossible.


According to the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission, the measure being taken by the police doesn’t fit the crime. It is “disproportionate,” said Daniel Bekele, chief commissioner, Ethiopian Human Right Commission, on his social media post.


Whereas according to reports, the police have been detaining everyone on the street without a mask, even people inside their private vehicle. Daniel Bekele said that such an “arbitrary arrest of people is outside the regulation…and counterproductive measure.”


The police commission told Ethio FM that The government would disclose the next measures that could be taken on the detainees. The commission’s public relations added that they have the ‘people’s support’ by taking this measure.


The infection rate increased in Ethiopia significantly in the past couple of weeks. Of 272 cases, 139 reported since the beginning of May. Authorities consider the carelessness of citizens as one of the biggest challenges amid combat against the pandemic.