The World Health Organization’s Director Tefros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has been accused of war crimes by a Nobel Peace Prize-nominated Economist named David Steinman. Steinman alleges that Ghebreyesus served a role in the atrocities committed by the Ethiopian government during his time as a high-ranking official in the Ethiopian government.
The allegations have made it to the International Criminal Court and include the killing and torturing of Ethiopians. According to Steinman Ghebreyesus would have been able to stop the atrocities committed by the Ethiopian Security Forces during his tenure as a ranking member of the government.
A lot of the evidence for these claims comes from Human Rights Watch, the US State Department, Amnesty International, and the University of Birmingham. None of these organizations named Ghebreyesus in their reports but they did detail the things that went on in the country while he was a high ranking official.
Due to Ghebreyesus serving as a member of the UN he has diplomatic immunity but the International Criminal Court has been known to ignore these things. If these claims are brought forward to a trial it would be the first time a UN official would face trial.
This is not the first major controversy to hit Ghebreyesus either, back in 2017 when he was still being considered for the post as W.H.O Director he was accused of covering up cholera outbreaks to protect the government’s image. Another major controversy was early this year when General Birhanua Jula of Ethiopia claimed that Ghebreyesus was actively supporting rebels that had started another civil conflict in the country.