By Audra Streetman

DENVER (AP/CBS4) – The Oromo Community of Colorado blocked traffic during a protest in Denver on Friday afternoon. Organizers says they want to raise awareness about the recent killing of a prominent Ethiopian activist and musician.

(credit: CBS)

The shooting of 34-year-old Haacaaluu Hundeessaa sparked violent demonstrations in Ethiopia, killing at least 239 people.

Ethiopia’s attorney general says two people have been arrested in connection with the shooting and a third is on the run. The official says the two had confessed, claiming they had been instructed by a rebel group, the Oromo Liberation Army, with the goal of inciting anti-government emotions and causing tensions between Ethiopia’s largest ethnic groups, the Oromos and Amharas.

(credit: CBS)

The Oromo Community of Colorado disputes this claim from the attorney general and alleges the Ethiopian government is infringing on human rights by blocking phone and internet access in the country.

The military was deployed to protests in Ethiopia and the Oromia regional police commissioner says nearly 5,000 people have been arrested.

Protest organizers in Colorado say there are 2.5 million displaced Oromo’s around the world and more than 6,000 in Metro Denver. The Oromo Community of Colorado held a protest in Aurora last Friday where they blocked traffic to raise awareness about the unrest in Ethiopia.

(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)  

Audra Streetman