The Ethiopian government on Wednesday announced that it will release all political prisoners in the country.
The country’s Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn who made the announcement at a press conference also said a notorious detention centre used to torture and extract confessions from prisoners would be closed.
The prison will become a “modern museum” according to the Prime minister who also said a new detention centre complying with international standards is to be opened.
Hailemariam Desalegn also announced the dropping of charges against people still awaiting trial as the government makes move to allow for political dialogue.
The latest decision would mean thousands arrested since 2015 and before that can now walk free.
Rights group, Human Rights Watch (HRW) in the past accused the Ethiopian government of using anti-terrorism laws to jail its critics, claims Ethiopia has denied.
The Ethiopian government’s decision is coming after several days of consultations within the ruling coalition, the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) on the plights of political prisoners.