On photo & # 39; s: Ethiopians drum for unity

Women who drum

Drummers came to Ethiopia to celebrate the diversity of the more than 100 million people of the country.

The celebration, officially called the Nations and Nationality Day, should highlight the more than 80 nationalities and ethnic groups of Ethiopia.

Groups from all over the country came to the capital stadium in the capital, Addis Ababa, in traditional costume that played their cultural instruments.

Man blows a horn

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This man was part of a group from Tigray in the north, who came to the festivities with a traditional flute and horn, or "shambeko" and "trumba" as they are known in the Tigrinya language.

People dance

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These women, dressed in clothes known as "tilfi" in Trigrinya, clapped and danced to the rhythm.

Men dancing staves

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The men of Afar came with their swords, known as "decay" in the Afarinya language, tied to their waist and staves, or "gebahada".

Afar is a sparsely populated area in the northeast of the country.

Man smiling at the camera

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This young man, also from Afar, shows off a hairstyle that is popular in the region.

The tensions between different ethnic or national groups have increased in recent months, resulting in deaths and massive displacements.

But tensions were not visible during the parade. In fact, the groups took dance styles from different parts of the country at different times.

Women in traditional clothing

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Oromos form the largest ethnic group of Ethiopia. These women came from Arsi in Oromia, a large strip of land in the west and the south of the country.

What they wear symbolizes the power of women, including the stick, or "siinque" in the Afaan Oromo language.

It is used to call the community to provide protection when women are threatened.

Traditional Oromo men

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These men came from the central Oromia, the area around the capital, with their shields and spears.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, from Oromia, has tried to emphasize the unity of Ethiopia since he came to power in April.

There is a debate going on in the country about how you can balance the importance of ethnicity and identify yourself as an Ethiopian.

Healing ethnic divisions is one of Mr Abiy's greatest challenges in the run-up to elections in 2020.

Woman looking into the camera

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People also came from Gambella in the west of the country, which borders South Sudan, and this young woman comes from the ethnic group of Nuer.

People who drum

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The Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples & Region (SNNPR) of Ethiopia, as the name suggests, consists of many different groups, including the Kambata, represented by these women who drum.

Women in orange outfits

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These women came from the Somali region. The beads around their neck and waist help keep their traditional clothing in green or orange in place.

Men dance

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While the women sang the men from the Somali region in the southeast, they danced.

Women in traditional Amhara costume

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These women, from the Agew ethnic group, come from the Amhara region in the northwest of the country.

There are many other ethnic groups in the region, but together the Amharas are the second largest group in the country.

Words from the BBC & # 39; s Amensisa Negera and Kalkidan Yibeltal. Photo & # 39; s by Amensisa Negera.

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