Ethiopians attend a rally in support of the new Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed in Addis Ababa

JOHANNESBURG - Twenty people appeared in court in the Ethiopian capital on Monday following a grenade attack at a rally for Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed in which two people were killed and scores wounded, Reuters reported. 

The attack was launched by an unidentified assailant moments after the 41-year-old prime minister, a former soldier who took office in April, finished his speech to tens of thousands of people gathered in the centre of Addis Ababa on Saturday.

A witness saw Abiy whisked away by guards.

Addressing the nation on television shortly after the blast and still wearing a green t-shirt he was handed at the rally, Abiy said the attack was an "attempt by forces who do not want to see Ethiopia united."

State-affiliated Fana reported that those in court included Girma Kassa, deputy police commissioner for the capital. 

He is among nine police officials arrested.

African News Agency (ANA) and Reuters