By Seleshi Tessema
A prominent Ethiopian opposition leader, Merera Gudina has been released Wednesday, his lawyer said.
"We can confirm that he is freed," Wendimu Ibssa told Anadolu Agency.
‘’We are going to Kilinto prison to bring him home,‘’ he said.” We are delighted, his family and some of his friends are gathered at his home to see him.’’
A vocal critic of the Ethiopian government, Gudina is the leader of the Oromo Federalist Congress.
He was arrested in November 2016, after he returned from Brussels where he addressed the European Parliament and met with opposition figures who were branded as ‘’terrorist and anti-peace’’ by the government, thus violating the state of emergency which had been imposed the preceding month.
He is one of the 115 prisoners who saw charges against them dropped on Monday by the Attorney General as part of the first phase implementation of government amnesty.
Over the past two years, widespread anti-government protests in the largest regional states of Oromia and Amhara demanded wider political freedoms and economic equity.
The Ethiopian government has always denied it was holding political prisoners, contrary to claims made by human rights and opposition groups.