Washington Post: The Latest: Explosion at large Ethiopia rally for new PM

The Latest: Explosion at large Ethiopia rally for new PM

Washington Post
June 23 at 3:10 AM

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia — The Latest on rally for Ethiopia’s reformist new prime minister (all times local):

10:10 a.m.

An explosion has disrupted a large rally by supporters of Ethiopia’s new, reformist prime minister, with the state broadcaster reporting that a few people have been injured.

Ambulances are at the scene in packed Meskel Square in the capital, Addis Ababa, where Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has been addressing thousands of supporters.

The explosion occurred shortly after Abiy finished speaking and was waving to the crowd.

The 42-year-old Abiy took office in April and quickly surprised Africa’s second most populous country by announcing a wave of political and economic reforms.

___

9:45 a.m.

Ethiopians heartened by a wave of reforms under a new prime minister have packed a square in the capital in a show of support with numbers unseen in recent years in the East African nation.

In a cowboy hat and T-shirt, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is addressing the crowd in Addis Ababa’s Meskel Square as supporters wear clothes displaying his image and carry signs saying “One Love, One Ethiopia.”

The 42-year-old Abiy took office in April and quickly surprised Africa’s second most populous country by announcing the release of tens of thousands of prisoners, the opening of state-owned companies to private investment and the unconditional embrace of a peace deal with rival Eritrea.

The United States is among those expressing support for the changes in a key security ally.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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