Ethiopian defense forces chief of staff 'attacked'

Prime minister did not announce Mekonnen is alive or dead after mercenaries' attack

Ethiopian defense forces chief of staff 'attacked'

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia 

Ethiopian Defense Forces Chief of Staff General Sea're Mekonnen has been "attacked" by mercenaries, the country's premier has announced.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed in a televised message to the nation in the early hours of Sunday said the mercenaries were linked to the perpetrators of the coup attempted against the Amhara Regional Government later on Saturday.

The prime minister did not give further details about the condition of the chief of staff except saying he was attacked.

He said the coup attempt in the city of Bahir Dar, capital of the Angara State, has been completely put under control within not more than an hour.

The chief of staff coordinated activities to foil the coup attempt, and mercenaries linked to the coup plotters have attacked the chief of staff.

He was not explicit and did not say if he is alive or dead.

The prime minister said the attackers have been arrested and more arrests are being made.

He said the Amhara officials were in a meeting when attacked, adding some of them were killed and some others injured.

The prime minister urged people to stay calm while government takes measures to stabilize the situation.

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