Ethiopia’s Southern regional state pardons 3,099 prisoners

by Xinhua

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Prisoners in a prison cell in Addis Ababa

ADDIS ABABA – Ethiopia’s Southern regional state on Thursday granted 3,099 prisoners amnesty ahead of the upcoming Ethiopian New Year, which starts on September 11.

Desie Dalkie, chief administrator of Southern regional state said the prisoners were freed because they met the legal requirements for pardon.

Legal requirements for pardon include the prisoner’s desire to live in peace in the future, the prisoner’s confession and repentance, the prisoner’s family and health status and the prisoner’s good conduct during incarceration.

The Southern regional state’s pardon for prisoners followed similar pardons granted by Amhara and Tigray regional states early this week.

Amhara and Tigray regional states early this week pardoned 1,981 and 957 prisoners respectively this week.

Ethiopia has a unique calendar deriving from the Ethiopian Orthodox Church traditions whereby the country counts its annual year seven to eight years, based on leap year, behind the internationally acclaimed Gregorian calendar.

Accordingly, the Ethiopian New Year that falls on September 11, 2017 will be 2010.

The East African country had declared 10-day long nationwide celebrations, which started from September 1, 2017, to usher in the upcoming Ethiopian New Year. The 10-day long nationwide celebrations include Love Day, Mothers’ and Children’s Day, Elders’ Day, Peace Day, Reading Day, Green Development Day, Respect Day, National Feelings Day, Unity Day and Ethiopia Day.

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