Ethiopia's chief prosecutor says the country has pardoned hundreds of convicts, among them Muslims jailed under anti-terror laws for opposing what they called government interference in their religion.

Prosecutor-General Getachew Ambaye said Saturday that the president signed the pardon for members of the Muslim groups after they expressed regret.

Getachew says that around 1,000 people have been pardoned ahead of the Ethiopian new year on Sunday and 135 of them were serving a time for terrorism charges and for religious extremism.

Ethiopia handed long jail terms to many Muslims who were involved in months-long protests in 2012, accusing the government of unconstitutionally encouraging a moderate teaching of Islam called Al-Ahbash and dictating the election of community leaders to support it at an Addis Ababa religious school.