The Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), a US-based group advocating for the freedom of the press, has called Ethiopia one of the worst jailers of media professionals in sub-Saharan Africa.
A brutal civil war being fought in the country’s northern Tigray region has accelerated hostility towards reporters, it said.
At least 63 journalists and media professionals have been jailed since November 2020 when the war started – eight of whom remain behind bars, according to the group.
The arrests were made in the capital, Addis Ababa, and five other regions, including Tigray.
CPJ said the intent to control the narrative of the war had been a major driver behind the increased hostilities towards the press.
The war has been fought outside the world’s media glare after journalists were denied access to areas affected by the conflict.
Some tens of thousands of civilians are believed to have been killed in the war, while millions others are in a desperate need of aid.