Two local officials in Ethiopia's northern Amhara state have been killed after the central government let expire a state of emergency that was declared for the conflict-wracked region last year, authorities said.

The heads of the Efrata Gidim and Kewet woreda, or districts, were killed by "extremist entities" on June 2 and 5, local officials said in separate statements.

The phrase is used by the government to refer to the Fano self-defence militia that took up arms against forces they had formerly supported in the Ahmara region a year ago.

Ethiopia's government has not officially ended the state of emergency declared in August 2023 and extended by parliament in February.

But to remain in place the government needed to seek parliament's approval by June 4, something it has not done.

Contacted by AFP, the office of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC), an independent state-affiliated body, called for the "restoration of ordinary law enforcement, including the release of those imprisoned during the implementation of the state of emergency", in a statement dated June 5.

The government has failed so far to end the Fano insurgency in Amhara, home to around 23 million people -- the second-largest of the roughly 80 ethno-linguistic groups in the country of 120 million people, Africa's second most populous.

An influx of refugees from war-torn Sudan and also Eritrea have also stoked tensions in the region.

Last month, the United Nations said around 1,000 refugees had fled a UN-run camp in Amhara after reports of armed robbery, shootings and alleged abductions.