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Oromia: #OromoProtests – Behind the hashtag January 3, 2016

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#OromoProtests December 28, 2015 Akkoon mormii irra jiru The struggle continues#OromoProtests, Buraayyuu, 31 December 2015Say no to the master killer. Addis Ababa master plan is genocidal plan against Oromo peopleSay no to the master killer. Addis Ababa master plan is genocidal plan against Oromo people. Say no.students at Machara High School (West Hararghe) Say No to the Master Plan and the Mass Killings, 29 Dec. 2015Global Solidalirty rally with #OromoProtests in Oromia@Seattle 29 December 2015#OromoProtests @Black Lion Hospital Oromo Medical stodents, 14 December 2015Kakaa OromooEgypt, Oromo Peaceful rally in solidarity with #OromoProtests Oromia against TPLF Ethiopian regime's ethnic cleansing (Master plan), December   10, 2015Silent sit-ins in the campus arena seem to become the new norm of protest (#OromProtess) when physical challenge of barbarism lets nearly impossible to otherwise. Arba Minch University, Dec. 2015. image2#OromoLivesMatters!agazi-fascist-tplf-ethiopias-forces-attacking-unarmed-and-peaceful-oromoprotests-in-baabichaa-town-central-oromia-w-shawa-december-10-20151#OromoProtests, Qabosoon itti fufa jedhu aayyoleen#OromoProtests of 7 December 2015OromoProtests against genocidal TPLF Ethiopia2. 19 June 2015#OromoProtests second round  at General Tadesse Biruu School, Ejere town, North Shawa December 28, 2015


#OromoProtests – Behind the hashtag




#OromoProtests against Tyranny all over Oromia against Ethiopian regime tyranny, 2015, 2016

Declaring war on its own citizens. Commandos shooting live bullets into unarmed crowds of mostly children and teens (See it to believe it – a short video by AJ+ (1 min) https://goo.gl/gbg9tf). That’s the current situation in Oromia, the largest and economically most important region in Ethiopia. School children, farmers and residents across Oromia, have been peacefully protesting for weeks against the government’s plan to expand the capital city by evicting millions of farmers and local residents.
Context to the protest (< 4 min): https://youtu.be/qdDiFGZjjak

People of all generations come out to protest in defiance of the well armed oppressive government.


See a massive protest in town 1 of 130+ (1 min 26 sec): https://youtu.be/svMa2QB_keI
However, instead of listening to their legitimate concerns, the government’s response to this mark of democracy was to gun down the peaceful protesters. More than 120 have been killed so far with hundreds injured and many more are currently being beaten and imprisoned. Even though major media outlets have not been able to cover the emerging crisis due to the government’s long standing policy of shutting down access to journalists and muzzling free press, citizen journalists are distributing information via videos and pictures on social media, some of which are included below. Please note that some are highly graphic and disturbing.
More than 120 killed, hundreds wounded, thousands detained and imprisoned.
Unless the actions of the government are exposed, these horrific and violent attacks against civilians will continue and many more lives will be lost. Because of the fact that the current Ethiopian regime is minority led, much like that of Syria, we are fearful that similar bloodshed could occur and lead to the destabilization of the region.
Students and professionals joined the protests.
These latest killings of unarmed protesters follows a similar massacre of students that happened in May of 2014. More than 70 students were estimated to have been killed by government forces and many more wounded or arrested without charges. Pictures below tell a similar story from 2014.
The killed and injured from similar protests that erupted in 2014.
In mid-December of 2015, Oromos in the Diaspora demonstrated in their host countries to request their respective governments to stop supporting the Ethiopian regime by turning a blind eye to the human rights abuses.
#OromoProtests across the world in support of brothers and sisters backhome.

The call by the diaspora community was also echoed by their respective state representatives.


Congressman Keith Ellison and Tom Emmer, and Congresswomen Betty McCollum stood with the Oromo people by condemning the actions of the Ethiopian government and asking for a thorough review.


…with all this going, the silence in major media outlets is deafening. Here are the few who broke from the norm and decided to speak up. Please join them…
“There has been limited media coverage of the ongoing protests. There are strong restrictions on the free press in Ethiopia, one of the most censored countries in the world, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists. Government critics and the independent press face increased scrutiny.” http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2015/12/8/students-protesting-land-grab-met-with-violence-in-ethiopia.html
Dispatches: Yet Again, a Bloody Crackdown on Protesters in Ethiopia “Student protests are spreading throughout Ethiopia’s Oromia region, as people demonstrate against the possibility that Oromo farmers and residents living near the capital, Addis Ababa, could be evicted from their lands without appropriate – or possibly any – compensation. Social media is filled with images of bloodied protesters; there are credible reports of injuries and arrests in a number of towns; and local police have publicly acknowledged that three students have died so far.” https://www.hrw.org/news/2015/12/05…
“Because I am Oromo” Amnesty International interviewed nine people arrested for actual or suspected participation in individual protests on a wide range of issues and received information from other sources about further protest-related arrests. Another 10 interviewees told Amnesty International their problems with the government had begun when they participated in a peaceful protest in previous years. https://www.amnesty.org/download/Do…
Ethiopia: Lethal Force Against Protesters “The Ethiopian government’s response to the Oromia protests has resulted in scores dead and a rapidly rising risk of greater bloodshed,” said Leslie Lefkow, deputy Africa director at Human Rights Watch. “The government’s labelling of largely peaceful protesters as ‘terrorists’ and deploying military forces is a very dangerous escalation of this volatile situation.” https://www.hrw.org/news/2015/12/18…
Crackdown Turns Deadly In Ethiopia As Government Turns Against Protesters “What’s at stake is the use of land in the Oromia region, home to the country’s largest ethnic group. They are disturbed by expansion plans for Addis Ababa, the capital. But in the last few days the protests have grown in size, and in grievance — and the government’s crackdown has become more violent.” http://www.npr.org/2015/12/19/46041…
What Is Behind the Oromo Rebellion in Ethiopia? “The Ethiopian government is now faced with unprecedented rebellion from the Oromo ethnic group, consisting 35% of the Ethiopia’s population, which it disingenuously claims is inspired by terrorism. The immediate pretext is the Addis Ababa Master Plan encroaching and displacing Oromo farmers, but this masks a deeper grievance which has been brewing for at least two decades under this regime, and for over a century under successive highland Ethiopian rulers.” http://www.huffingtonpost.com/yohan…
For more information please visit www.OromoProtests.com or www.Facebook.com/OromoProtests


Troubled times: Blood and terror in Ethiopia as protests sweep the streets, and state vows to ‘act without mercy’. #OromoProtests January 3, 2016

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Troubled times: Blood and terror in Ethiopia as protests sweep the streets, and state vows to ‘act without mercy’

  Mail & Guardian Africa,   22 Dec 2015, AFP

The sight of the protesters on the streets shouting “Stop the killings! This isn’t democracy!” is rare in the country.

People in Wolenkomi, some 60km west of Ethiopia's capital Addis Ababa stand on December 15, 2015 near the body of a protester from Ethiopia's Oromo group allegedly shot dead by security forces . (Photo/AFP).

People in Wolenkomi, some 60km west of Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa stand on December 15, 2015 near the body of a protester from Ethiopia’s Oromo group allegedly shot dead by security forces . (Photo/AFP).

TWO lifeless bodies lay on the ground as the terrified crowd, armed only with sticks against gun-toting Ethiopian security forces, fled the fierce crackdown on protesters.

Blood seeped through a sheet covering one of the bodies on the road outside Wolenkomi, a town just 60 kilometres (37 miles) from the capital Addis Ababa.

“That was my only son,” a woman sobbed. “They have killed me.”

Back at the family home of 20-year-old Kumsa Tafa, his younger sister Ababetch shook as she spoke. “He was a student. No one was violent. I do not understand why he is dead,” she said.

Human Rights Watch says at least 75 people have been killed in a bloody crackdown on protests by the Oromo people, Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group.

Bekele Gerba, deputy president of the Oromo Federal Congress, puts the toll at more than 80 while the government says only five have been killed.

The demonstrations have spread to several towns since November, when students spoke out against plans to expand the capital into Oromia territory—a move the Oromo consider a land grab.

The sight of the protesters on the streets of towns like Wolenkomi—shouting “Stop the killings! This isn’t democracy!”—is rare in a country with little tolerance for expressions of discontent with the government.

Tree trunks and stones are strewn on the asphalt on the road west from Addis to Shewa zone, in Oromia territory, barricading the route for several kilometres.

Chaos broke out on a bus on the road when it emerged that the police were again clashing with demonstrators in Wolenkomi.

“My husband just called me,” said a woman clutching her phone, as others screamed and children burst into tears.

“He’s taking refuge in a church. Police shot at the protesters,” she said.

The man next to her cried in despair: “They’re taking our land, killing our children. Why don’t they just kill everyone now?”

The army raided Wolenkomi again the next day, the rattle of gunfire lasting for more than an hour.

“They grabbed me by the face and they told me, ‘Go home! If you come back here, we’ll kill you’,” said Kafani, a shopkeeper.

Rights groups have repeatedly criticised Ethiopia’s use of anti-terrorism legislation to stifle peaceful dissent.

But Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn declared on television that the government would act “without mercy in the fight against forces which are trying to destabilise the region.”

‘Land is everything’

Oromo leaders have vowed to keep up their resistance against proposals to extend Addis, and Human Rights Watch has warned of “a rapidly rising risk of greater bloodshed”.

“The government can continue to send security forces and act with violence—we will never give up,” said Gerba.

Land is at the heart of the problem. Under Ethiopia’s constitution, all land belongs to the state, with owners legally considered tenants—raising fears amongst the Oromo that a wave of dispossession is on its way.

“For farmers in Oromia and elsewhere in the country, their land is everything,” said Felix Horne, a researcher at Human Rights Watch.

“It’s critical for their food supply, for their identity, for their culture,” he said.

“You cannot displace someone from their land with no consultation and then inadequately compensate them and not expect there to be any response,” Horne warned.

Some Oromo have already seen their lands confiscated.

Further west, in the town of Ambo, a woman named Turu was expropriated of her two hectares, receiving only 40,000 birr ($1,900) in compensation.

“We had a good life before,” she said.

Today she struggles to support her four children and her disabled husband with the 30 birr a day ($1.40) she earns working in a factory.

With their own language distinct from Ethiopia’s official Amharic tongue, the 27 million Oromo make up nearly 30% of the country’s population.

“The Oromos are seen as more of a threat by the government in part because they are by far the largest ethnic group,” said Horne.

The proposed expansion of Addis is part of a 25-year development plan to boost the city’s infrastructure and attract new investors.

It sparked demonstrations last year, but on a smaller scale.