Clashes between police and protesters erupted in gunfire and grenade explosions Wednesday, with police killing at least 33 people during a second day of renewed protests of Ethiopia's disputed elections. The independent Ethiopia Human Rights Council said in a statement sent to foreign embassies that the death toll was based on bodies taken to mortuaries in Addis Ababa.
At least 150 civilians were wounded, including a 7-year-old boy who was shot in the hip, according to doctors at five hospitals said. The doctors said 23 dead bodies were brought to the hospitals. The violence followed clashes Tuesday between protesters and police that killed another eight people and wounded 43, the AP reports.
Hundreds of heavily armed riot police were deployed across the capital Wednesday as heavy machine-gun fire, rifle fire and loud explosions rocked Addis Ababa. Armored personnel carriers carrying Ethiopia's special forces patrolled streets littered with burning tires and broken glass.
The fighting spread across the city, reaching the doorsteps of the British, French, Kenyan and Belgian embassies all located in different parts of the capital. Workers at U.N. headquarters were told not to leave their offices.
An Associated Press reporter saw federal police surround one hospital, dragging out and arresting young men. Witnesses said security officials were rounding up young people in various parts of the city.
Witnesses also said police fired assault rifles and lobbed grenades indiscriminately against civilians Wednesday. Among the victims was Arabia Abdul Fatah, 13, who was wounded by shrapnel in her stomach and legs. A.M.