African Journal of
History and Culture

  • Abbreviation: Afr. J. Hist. Cult.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 2141-6672
  • DOI: 10.5897/AJHC
  • Start Year: 2009
  • Published Articles: 197

Article in Press

Incarceration of EPRP members in the Derg regime and the massacre of Gojjam elites: the case of Debre Markos prison

Bawkie Sintayehu Semie

  •  Received: 01 December 2023
  •  Accepted: 23 February 2024
The purpose of this study is to trace the historical development of the incarceration of EPRP (hereafter Ethiopian Peoples’ Revolutionary Party) members in the Derg regime and the massacre of Gojjam elites in Debre Markos prison in the late 1970s. The principal method employed to study this issue is the qualitative method. Data was collected through library and archival center readings as well as interviews with key informants, including the participants, survivors, and eyewitness observers of “White and Red Terrors.” The EPRP, a prominent opposition political party in Ethiopia, has been systematically killing prominent political leaders since the mid-1970s due to a military conflict with Derg. The Derg regime massively incarcerated EPRP members and supporters, including in Debre Markos prison. The military government, without any formal appeal, has conducted systematic atrocities in prisons, including mass killings, executions, and massacres since the mid-1970s. The EPRP, primarily composed of educated elites, faced a generation gap in Ethiopia and Gojjam when the Derg government's mass killing of EPRP members resulted in the loss of educated preference. Therefore, to defend such atrocious mistakes due to political differences, Ethiopian politicians should practice resolving political differences through discussion.

Keywords: EPRP, Derg, Debre Markos, Gojjam, prison, imprisonment and massacre.