Ethiopia declares official mourning after stampede
Oct.3, Oromia: Ethiopia has declared three days of national mourning after a stampede at a religious festival in Oromia, which started after police fired tear gas and warning shots, killed at least 50 people.
The Government Communication Affairs Office said in a statement that flags across the country and at Ethiopian embassies and consular offices would be lowered to half-mast starting from Tuesday, the state news agency reported.
"The country declares the mourning following the death of people who lost their lives because of the violence instigated by anti-peace elements," the government said.
Oromo opposition leaders say the stampede was sparked by police firing tear gas and shooting in the air to disperse people at the festival. Sections of the crowd had started to shout anti-government slogans and make anti-government gestures, according to media reports.
Witnesses said people were crushed, and others fell into ditches as they tried desperately to escape the police.
The Oslo Times International News Network