A massacre in Abuna Yemata Guh, at the foot of the famous rock-hewn church

Everyone was preparing food, water and other essentials for the day and early around 8 AM, just when they were about to leave the village, Eritrean troops came to the village by a military truck. The troops visited the houses, dragged the civilians and massacred them in their farmlands. They shot 21 people in total and 19 of them died, two survived but in severely wounded condition. They killed everyone they found in the village.



Gebrehiwet Gebreanenya and Abraha Gebreanenya are two married brothers who live in the house of their parents with their elderly father Gebreanenya Gebreegziabher, their wives and children. Gebrehiwet and his wife Tsegu Gebremichael had two children, Samrawit and Yordanos; and Abraha, his elder brother, and his wife Hiwet Birhane, had four children: Mahlet, Zufan, Rahel and a not-yet-christened baby. Both of them are farmers and everyday they move with their cattle to grazing lands and waters, only coming back to spend the night at home.

On Friday, May 7, 2021, a fighting took place between Eritrean and Tigrayan forces in the village of Abune Y’ma’eta Guh, at the foot of the famous rock-hewn church. The village residents all fled to the mountains and spent the day in caves. In the evening, when the fighting stopped, they came down to their village to spend the night in their homes. The next day, on Saturday, Gebrehiwet and Abraha discussed the plan for the day and as usual left with their cattle. The plan was for their wives, their children and their elderly father to join the other village residents and flee to the caves as they did the day before. Everyone was preparing food, water and other essentials for the day and early around 8 AM, just when they were about to leave the village, Eritrean troops unexpectedly came to the village, visited the houses, dragged the civilians out and massacred them in their farmlands. They shot 21 people in total and 19 of them died, two survived but in severely wounded condition. Seven of the killed are children under the age of 10, one of them a one-month-old baby. They killed everyone they found in the village.

The victims included 9 members of the Gebreaneneya family and 12 others. These are: Akebom Gebresilassie, Amit Abadi, Gidey Gebreqorqos , Awetash Tsadiq, Tsegu Gebreegzibher with her son, Tekle Gebrehiet, Alemtsehay Gidey (her son severely wounded). Birhan Abraha (with her two children). Alemtsehay’s father, Gidey, was killed by Ethiopian and Eritrean soldiers back in November.

When Gebrehiwet and Abraha came back in the evening, they found 8 members of the household massacred in a field some 20 minutes-walk away from their house. Their father Gebreanenya, Abraha’s wife and his four children including the not-yet-christened baby were all killed. Gebrehiwet’s wife Tsegu and his 2-year-old daughter Yordanos were also killed. His daughter Samrawit was wounded by bullets and machete, but she survived.

The troops first shot Samrawit on her right thigh and leg. When they knew she was not dead, they used machete to injure her right thigh and leg. Samrawit is four and half years old. Her father brought her to Ayder on foot through Agoza-Tsigereda route because the Megab – Abraha we Atsbeha route was occupied by the troops. Some other men from the village helped him carry her in an improvised stretcher. They started the journey on Thursday May 13 and arrived at Ayder Referral Hospital on Saturday May 15. They were lucky to find a car on the way from Tsigereda to Wukro, which brought them to Mekelle.


  1. Wolfi Hausen (Kailash)

    September 4, 2021 at 6:50 am

    Angi and me from Germany were two times here and climbed to the church.
    It is so sad to hear from this crime.

    We love Ethiopia

  2. Baki

    May 26, 2021 at 2:28 am

    Ask TPLF to put their guns down and come to negotiating table. THEY ARE GETTING INNOCENT PEOPLE KILLED.

    TPLF DOESNT CARE that poor tegarus die

  3. Gebru

    May 25, 2021 at 11:05 am

    there is no Eritrean soldier in Tigrai, The writer got to be taken a mistake.

    • Davey McCrackett

      May 25, 2021 at 1:56 pm

      Haha! Very funny

  4. We want a military action

    May 24, 2021 at 3:03 pm

    If TDF releases any ENDF and EDF soldier, there is point to argue withe fact that they taking part in the suffering of our people !INTL laws of POWS are not applicable to this circumstance as it is a pure genocide taking place in towns by criminals who delibertely avoid warfronts and prefer to hide in cities and kill civilians. Prisoners should be released for the purpose of
    receiving POWS from enemies . This seems to be violated as Abiy and Isays are killing everyone, civilains, POWS and former military staff. Burning harvest and looting agriculral products is part of their principal duty .

    Eritrean government that coped with UNSC sanctions ,imposed on 6DEc 2011, could not be challenged by current sanctions and visa restrictions and will not force it to stop the war unless it is tempted by UN-led military action to save our people and halt their sufferings . ERitrean GOvt is addicted to warnings and know how tackle the upshot of sanctions.

    Historically speaking , sanctions failed to achieve intended goals. Take a look at :
    “But they have been in place against Cuba for 40 years without bringing down Fidel Castro. Some 13 years of sanctions on Iraq failed to topple Saddam Hussein. After 14 years of US sanctions the military regime remains in Burma. Decades of sanctions on Iran have brought no regime change”

    All these sanctions, visa restrictions , nonstop press releases from UN & EU offices will be like casting stones against the wind- with no significant change in the situation in Tigray .PLease save your breath and take drastic military action to save our people!!!!


  5. Aider à mettre fin au génocide , famine et Les violences sexuelles

    May 24, 2021 at 11:27 am

    Ces hommes sont mauvais en eux-mêmes. Contrary to popular belief, these Eritrean and ethiopian troops are inherently evil ;what they are practicing proves the fact that they are evil by themselves.

    Je doute que le Diable lui-même soit plus brutal que ces hommes qui utilisent des produits chimiques mortels sur leurs frères humains. Il faut se rappeler que tous ces crimes de guerre sont commis sous prétexte d’arrêter les dirigeants du Tigré (TPLF ) et de démanteler leur parti politique.

    We need a military actions right now. People of Tigray are exposed to unimaginable attrocities on a daily basis. This white phosphorus attack is utterly inhumane and do remind me ” Cruelity has no geographic boundary and could repeate itself regardless of its locality. Cruelty could not come to a halt and extinct as humanbeings like these people exist on earth.

    The world leaders bring peace in the middle east after 11 days, but they are busy only issuing warnings and appeasing letters , while the most innocent creatures are dying and suffering like these ???
    Considering the traits of Isayas Afewerki and his adminstrative style , we could easily come to conclusion that he will not be intimidated by those sanctions and visa restrictions.

    Experts did a research on how Isayas was collecting tax from Eritreans in overseas;
    In addition, the tax collection is perceived as mandatory by many Eritreans, and non-compliance with payments can lead to consequences such as denial of consular services, punishment of family members in Eritrea.

    Hence, sanctions and visa restrictions will make our enemies more brutal against our people . Ethiopia will also adopt the same style from Eritrean government to compensate the loss as a result of the sanctions made by EU and US.

    They will put all their citizens into the fire they launched until one persona nd one bullet remains just as their predecessor Colonel Mengistu Hailemariam stated out of Desperation.

    If UNSC and EU is not take military action, there will more deaths and atrocities and our enemies are desperately and mercilessly acting nonstop until their total collapse.

    Help end the suffering of innocent civilians irrespective of their ethnicity and religion .

    Aider à mettre fin au génocide , famine et Les violences sexuelles , utilisées comme une arme de guerre!

    Je tiens à vous remercier au nom de peuple du Tigré et et tous les civils innocents, sans distinction de leur sexe, âge, de religion, origine ethnique, visés par des criminels de guerre!!!

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