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Understanding Genocide: A Crime Against Humanity

MekelleŠć° 6 June 2024 (Tigray Herald)

Understanding Genocide: A Crime Against Humanity

By Yerga Yaecobe

Defining Genocide

Genocide is the intentional and systematic annihilation of a racial, political, or cultural group.Recognized as an international crime, it involves specific acts aimed at the partial orcomplete destruction of national, ethnic, racial, or religious groups.

Key Elements of Genocide

Intent to Destroy: A clear intent to eliminate, either in whole or in part, a protected group.This specific intent sets genocide apart from other crimes against humanity.

Protected Groups: Groups under protection by the Genocide Convention include national,ethnic, racial, and religious communities.

Genocidal Acts: Actions classified as genocidal when conducted with intent include:

Killing members of the group.

Inflicting serious bodily or mental harm on group members.Deliberately creating living conditions aimed at the group’s physical destruction.

Enforcing measures to prevent births within the group.Forcibly transferring children from the group to another group.

Categorizing Genocidal Acts

Killing members of the group.

Inflicting serious bodily or mental harm.

Deliberately creating destructive living conditions.

Imposing birth prevention measures.

Forcibly transferring children.The Tigray Genocide: A Case Study

Background

The Tigray Genocide occurred during the Tigray War, which started in November 2020 inEthiopia. Documented atrocities include mass killings, sexual violence, and forced

displacement.

Examining the Tigray Genocide

Intent to Destroy: Evidence shows a coordinated effort to annihilate the Tigrayan ethnicgroup, marked by inflammatory political rhetoric, targeted violence, and widespread humanrights abuses.

Protected Group: The Tigrayans, an ethnic group within Ethiopia, are the targets.

Genocidal Acts:

Killing Members: Numerous massacres have left thousands of civilians dead.Serious Harm: Torture, rape, and severe physical and psychological harm are rampant.

Destructive Conditions: Blockades on aid, destruction of crops and livestock, and attacks on

health facilities have led to famine and lack of medical care.Birth Prevention: Documented cases of sexual violence, forced sterilizations, and otherreproductive harms.

Child Transfers: Although less documented, concerns exist about the displacement and

abduction of children.Conclusion

The Tigray conflict demonstrates numerous elements of genocide, with clear intent todestroy the Tigrayan ethnic group. Despite ending in November 2022, it remains one of thedeadliest genocides of the 21st century, occurring just a year after Prime Minister AbiyAhmed received the Nobel Peace Prize. Over 25 countries have been implicated, eitherdirectly or indirectly. The international community must act urgently. The International Courtof Justice (ICJ) must intervene now to stop this silent and systematic genocide.

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