Meta, the parent company of Facebook, has removed a post by Ethiopian Prime Minister Ahmed Abiy dated Sunday that called for Ethiopians to “bury” the Tigray People’s Liberation force.
A Meta spokesperson said the post was removed “for violating our policies against inciting and supporting violence.”
In a separate post on Wednesday that remains online, Abiy vowed “to bury this enemy with our blood and bones and uplift Ethiopia’s dignity.”
It was recalled that the US State Department, in September frown at prominent Abiy adviser’s speech which compared Tigrayan rebels to the Devil and said they should be “the last of their kind”.
United States and others have warned Ethiopia about “dehumanizing rhetoric ” after the Prime Minister in a comment in July described the Tigray forces as “cancer” and “weeds.”
This is not the first time Facebook would delete posts published by world leaders. Earlier this year, the company deleted a video from U.S. President Donald Trump in which he peddled false claims about election fraud following a deadly skirmish at the U.S. Capitol. Facebook said at the time the video contributed to “the risk of ongoing violence.”
Abiy’s government this week declared a national state of emergency with sweeping powers of detention and military conscription.
The prime minister repeated his call to “bury” the Tigray forces in public comments on Wednesday as he and other officials marked one year of war.
This development is doubtlessly another detriment to Abiy’s image as the first Ethiopian and the first Oromo to be awarded a Nobel Prize, winning the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize for his work in ending the 20-year post-war territorial stalemate between Ethiopia and Eritrea
In June 2021, representatives from multiple countries called for the award of the Nobel Peace Prize to Abiy to be re-considered because of the war crimes committed in Tigray.