“They were chanting and saying the government should reveal the whole truth about June 22,” the man said. Protesters were also demanding the release of prisoners due to appear in court over the violence, he said.

It was not clear how many prisoners were due to appear in court or what the charges were.

But state-run Amhara Mass Media said those due to appear in court included Brigadier General Tefera Mamo, the former head of special forces in Amhara, and noted the prisoners have been held for 64 days without charge.

The witness said he didn’t see police arresting or beating any protesters, a common occurrence under Abiy’s predecessor Hailemariam Desalegn.

Three years of deadly protests culminated in Hailemariam’s resignation in April last year, ushering in Abiy’s rule and the gradual loosening of the state’s iron grip.