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Defend the Oppressed Peoples in Ethiopia June 15, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
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Why this is important

CLICK HERE PLEASE SIGN ON TO STOP THE ATROCITIES AND GENOCIDE COMMITTED BY THE ETHIOPIAN STATE

LAND GRABBING IN ETHIOPIA & ABYSSINIA MUST STOP

WATCH !

The International Criminal Court (ICCt) announced on 15 September 2016 it will now hold corporate executives and governments legally responsible for environmental crimes. The court’s new focus on land grabbing and environmental destruction could help put a dent in corporate and governmentalimpunity. Politicians and corporate bosses who are chasing communities off their land and trashing the environment will find themselves standing trial in the Hague alongside war criminals and dictators. However, far‐sighted covers by USAmerican corporate investors through corporate fronts from e.g. India restrict the ICCt, since neither the USA nor India ‐ as other rogue states like Sudan or Israel ‐ are parties to the Rome Statute of the ICCt.
https://www.icc‐cpi.int/itemsDocuments/20160915_OTP‐Policy_Case‐Selection_Eng.pdf

Latest Updates:

01. Dec. 2016: 
Ethiopian forces from the command post of Ethiopia’s sweeping State Of Emergency command post detained leading Oromo ethnic group and government opposition figure Prof. Dr. Merera Gudina, chairman of the Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC), upon his arrival at Addis Ababa Bole International Airport after returning from Brussels, where he testified at the EU parliament on the current situation in Ethiopia alongside with Prof. Berhanu Nega of Patriotic Ginbot 7 (G7), an armed freedom fighter group, and Rio Olympics marathon silver medallist ‐ athlete Feyisa Lellisa. Also four relatives of Prof. Merera were detained.

23. Nov. 2016:
Oromo asylum seeker and UNHCR registered refugee Yaazoo Kabbabaa ‐ the prominent leader of ‘Qeerro‘ (The Oromo youth group who is leading the protests in Ethiopia) ‐ was attacked in Cairo during the evening while he was returning home from visiting friends, by people described as Ethiopian state agents following him. During the incident Mr. Kabbabaa was injected in the neck with a toxic substance. Luckily he was rescued and brought to a hospital, where he regained consciousness in the meantime. It is, however, not yet clear if he will remain paralyzed. His medical bills are being covered by a campaign: https://www.gofundme.com/yaazoo‐kabbabaas‐medical‐fund . Please chip in! Ethiopian dissidents who fled the country live in constant fear from agents sent by the Addis regime after them.

* 14. Nov. 2016:
Oromo Leadership Convention was held in Atlanta, Georgia, USA, November 11 ‐ 13
Oromo United and Steadfast to Continue Revolution Against TPLF Regime
http://www.oromorevolution.com/s/Press‐Release‐English.pdf

* 20. Oct. 2016:
As we predicted: The brutal regime felt empowered by Merkel’s visit and the promised millions of Euro for “police training” and “to try to quell the unrest”. In just the one week after her ill‐conceived visit almost 3,000 Oromo women and men were rounded up in different locations and thrown in jail. Reportedly Ethiopian agents were sent to neighbouring countries to hunt down dissidents. Ethiopian authorities admitted to Reuters on Thursday they had detained 1,645 people.

* 15. Oct. 2016: The Dictatorial Regime proclaims STATE OF EMERGENCY http://hornaffairs.com/en/2016/10/19/ethiopia‐directive‐execution‐state‐emergencyfull‐text/

* 11. Oct. 2016: German Chancellor Angela Merkel travelled to the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababawhere she was welcomed by the PM of the corrupt regime with military honours. Amid protests in Germany against the insensitive visit, Merkel offered millions of Euro in bilateral agreements, to train the police and mediation to try and quell the rising unrest in Ethiopia. Just two days prior to Merkel’s visit, the Ethiopian regime declared a six‐month state of emergency in order to undertake even more brutal measures to suppress popular protests.

* 02. Oct. 2016: 
At least 52 people directly killed by police action against protesters during Oromia religious festival of Irreechaa, the Oromo Thanksgiving, in Bishooftuu. Others died in the ensuing stampede. 175 dead bodies have been loaded and taken to Addis Ababa according to a police source. That’s in addition to over 120 at Bishoftu hospital. ECOTERRA Intl., Human Rights Watch and the UN called for an independent investigation.

* 01. Oct. 2016: ECOTERRA Intl. demands the immediate and unconditional release of illegally arrested Ethiopian scientist and blogger Seyoum Teshome. Police arrested the prominent writer and commentator Teshome today, who writes for http://www.Ethiothinkthank.com and lectures at Ambo University.

* 16. June 2016: Ethiopian security forces killed at least 500 people in the recent wave of anti‐government demonstrations, US‐based Human Rights Watch (HRW) says in its most comprehensive report into the Oromo protests.
https://tinyurl.com/j7nanmr
Even government officials admitted that over 170 Oromo protesters were killed.

Meanwhile the atrocities against the Mursi and other aboriginal nations of Ethiopia continue unabated.

Foreign investments through the present Ethiopian governance are unethical and taxpayers all over the world must ensure that their governments, who are state‐sponsors or donors to the Ethiopian governance, stop immediately any support until these crimes against humanity end.

Land Grabbing is the purchase and lease of vast tracts of land from poor, developing countries by wealthier nations and international private investors. It has led to unprecedented misery especially in Africa, South‐America and India.African Food Security is in jeopardy and lands half the size of Europe have already been grabbed.

The Ethiopian government has forcibly displaced hundreds of thousands of indigenous people from their ancestral lands. It has rendered formerly sustainably living small‐scale farmers and pastoral communities dependent on food aid, which is paid for by the taxpayers and well‐wishers from donor countries, while the profits of these industrial agriculture‐, oil‐ and gas‐ventures go into the pockets of private investors and corrupt officials.

THIS MUST STOP

The recently enacted Kampala Convention ‐ an Africa‐wide treaty and the world’s first that protects people displaced within their own countries by violence, natural disasters or large‐scale development projects ‐ is violated blatantly and with impunity by Ethiopia.

PLEASE SIGN ON
URGE THE AFRICAN UNION AND THE ETHIOPIAN GOVERNANCE TO STOP THE ETHIOPIAN ATROCITIES AND GENOCIDE

The African Union Convention for the Protection and Assistance of Internally Displaced Persons in Africa must be enforced!

Read more:
Indian investors are forcing Ethiopians off their land
By John Vidal (TheGuardian)

Thousands of Ethiopians are being relocated or have already fled as their land is sold off to foreign investors without their consent

Ethiopia’s leasing of 600,000 hectares (1.5m acres) of prime farmland to Indian companies has led to intimidation, repression, detentions, rapes, beatings, environmental destruction, and the imprisonment of journalists and political objectors, according to a new report.

Research by the US‐based Oakland Institute suggests many thousands of Ethiopians are in the process of being relocated or have fled to neighbouring countries after their traditional land has been handed to foreign investors without their consent. The situation is likely to deteriorate further as companies start to gear up their operations and the government pursues plans to lease as much as 15% of the land in some regions, says Oakland.

In a flurry of new reports about global “land grabbing” this week, Oxfam said on Thursday that investors were deliberately targeting the weakest‐governed countries to buy cheap land. The 23 least‐developed countries of the world account for more than half the thousands of recorded deals completed between 2000 and 2011, it said. Deals involving approximately 200m ha of land are believed to have been negotiated, mostly to the advantage of speculators and often to the detriment of communities, in the past few years.

In what is thought to be one of the first “south‐south” demonstrations of concern over land deals, this week Ethiopian activists came to Delhi to urge Indian investors and corporations to stop buying land and to actively prevent human rights abuses being committed by the Ethiopian authorities.

“The Indian government and corporations cannot hide behind the Ethiopian government, which is clearly in violation of human rights laws,” said Anuradha Mittal, director of the Oakland Institute. “Foreign investors must conduct impact assessments to avoid the adverse impacts of their activities.”

Ethiopian activists based in UK and Canada warned Indian investors that their money was at risk. “Foreign investors cannot close their eyes. When people are pushed to the edge they will fight back. No group knows this better than the Indians”, said Obang Metho, head of grassroots social justice movement Solidarity Movement for a New Ethiopia (SMNE), which claims 130,000 supporters in Ethiopia and elsewhere.

Speaking in Delhi, Metho said: “Working with African dictators who are stealing from the people is risky, unsustainable and wrong. We welcome Indian investment but not [this] daylight robbery. These companies should be accountable under Indian law.”

Nyikaw Ochalla, director of the London‐based Anywaa Survival Organisation, said: “People are being turned into day labourers doing backbreaking work while living in extreme poverty. The government’s plans … depend on tactics of displacement, increased food insecurity, destitution and destruction of the environment.”

Ochall, who said he was in daily direct contact with communities affected by “land grabbing” across Ethiopia, said the relocations would only add to hunger and conflict.

“Communities that have survived by fishing and moving to higher ground to grow maize are being relocated and say they are now becoming dependent on government for food aid. They are saying they will never leave and that the government will have to kill them. I call on the Indian authorities and the public to stop this pillage.”

Karuturi Global, the Indian farm conglomerate and one of the world’s largest rose growers, which has leased 350,000 ha in Gambella province to grow palm oil, cereals maize and biofuel crops for under $1.10 per hectare per year, declined to comment. A spokesman said: “This has nothing to do with us.”

Ethiopia has leased an area the size of France to foreign investors since 2008. Of this, 600,000 ha has been handed on 99‐year leases to 10 large Indian companies. Many smaller companies are believed to have also taken long leases. Indian companies are said to be investing about $5bn in Ethiopian farmland, but little is expected to benefit Ethiopia directly. According to Oakland, the companies have been handed generous tax breaks and incentives as well as some of the cheapest land in the world.

The Ethiopian government defended its policies. “Ethiopia needs to develop to fight poverty, increase food supplies and improve livelihoods and is doing so in a sustainable way,” said a spokeswoman for the government in London. She pointed out that 45% of Ethiopia’s 1.14m sq km of land is arable and only 15% is in use.

The phenomenon of Indian companies “grabbing” land in Africa is an extension of what has happened in the last 30 years in India itself, said Ashish Kothari, author of a new book on the growing reach of Indian businesses.

“In recent years the country has seen a massive transfer of land and natural resources from the rural poor to the wealthy. Around 60 million people have been displaced in India by large scale industrial developments. Around 40% of the people affected have been indigenous peoples,” he said.

These include dams, mines, tourist developments, ports, steel plants and massive irrigation schemes.

According to Oakland, the Ethiopian “land rush” is part of a global phenomenon that has seen around 200m ha of land leased or sold to foreign investors in the past three years.

The sales in Africa, Latin America and Asia have been led by farm conglomerates, but are backed by western hedge and pension funds, speculators and universities. Many Middle East governments have backed them with loans and guarantees.

Barbara Stocking, the chief executive of Oxfam, which is holding a day of action against land grabs on Thursday, called on the World Bank to temporarily freeze all land investments in large scale agriculture to ensure its policies did not encourage land grabs.

“Poor governance allows investors to secure land quickly and cheaply for profit. Investors seem to be cherry‐picking countries with weak rules and regulations because they are easy targets. This can spell disaster for communities if these deals result in their homes and livelihoods being grabbed.”
While DFID, GIZ etc. failed and fail to act on Human Rights violations ‐ see also: http://www.anywaasurvival.org

‐ and please note that many believe the Indian companies act simply as straw‐men for USAmerican land‐grabbing interests Incl. AGRA and Monsanto), who are competing now with similar Chinese interests in Africa.

‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐

In the harsh Ogaden region of Eastern Ethiopia, impoverished ethnic people are being murdered and tortured, raped, persecuted and displaced by government paramilitary forces. Illegal actions carried out with the knowledge and tacit support of donor countries, seemingly content to turn a blind eye to war crimes and crimes against humanity being committed by their brutal, repressive ally in the region; and a deaf ear to the pain and suffering of the Ogaden Somali people.

read: http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/02/08/ethiopian‐annihilation‐of‐the‐ogaden‐people/

Meanwhile the Ethiopian GIBE III dam project is devastating the lives of remote southern Ethiopian ethnicities. Pastoralists living in the Omo valley are being forcibly relocated, imprisoned and killed due to the ongoing building of a massive dam that shall turn the region into a major centre for commercial farming ‐ mostly by foreign ventures. War is in the making.

see also: http://www.genocidewatch.org/ethiopia.html

Since mid‐November 2015, large‐scale protests have again swept through Oromia, Ethiopia’s largest region, and the response from security forces has again been brutal. They have killed countless students and farmers, and arrested opposition politicians and countless others.

Since then Ethiopia has been shaken by a global wave of anti‐government protests over the controversial “Addis Ababa Integrated Development Master Plan” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oromia_Special_Zone_Surrounding_Finfinne , which is just another form of grabbing land from the Oromo people. The regime had insisted on escalating its violations of human rights through the implementation of this very dangerous policy of land grabbing in Oromia. While the Oromo people were peacefully protesting against the unfair land use policy at least over 180 innocent Oromo civilians were killed in the three months from mid November 2015 to mid January 2016.
After two months of global protests, the Ethiopian government finally announced the cancellation of this development plan https://www.oromiamedia.org/tag/finfinne‐master‐plan/ for Addis Ababa (Finfinne) http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/IPeoples/WG/IGFM1‐oromo‐4b.doc and its expansion into neighbouring Oromia state. But the problem hasn’t gone away.

In violation of the EU resolution and despite international pressure, reports are confirming now that the regime’s loyal armed forces continue to attack the civilian population in many parts of Oromia. Though these violations of civil rights during the process of land grabbing have reached a new climax, the capacity of human rights organizations to access data of extra‐judicial killings and disappearances in the region is at an unprecedented low.

There is a war of ethnic cleansing officially declared against the Oromo people and implemented across Oromia. Though it has been difficult even to keep up with reports of the death toll some confirmed records are now showing that more than 400 civilians have been killed as of 19. February 2016. 

This rein of state terror must end!

‐ see also the previous HRW report https://www.hrw.org/news/2016/01/22/ethiopias‐invisible‐crisis

On January 12, 2016 the Ethiopian government announced it was cancelling the master plan, but that hasn’t stopped the protests and the resultant crackdown. Although the protest was initially about the potential for displacement, it has become about so much more. Despite being the biggest ethnic group in Ethiopia, the Oromos have often felt marginalized by successive governments and feel unable to voice their concerns over injust government policy. Oromos who express dissent are often arrested and tortured or otherwise mistreated in detention, accused of belonging to the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), a group that has long been mostly inactive and that the government designated a terrorist organization. The government is doing all it can to make sure that the news of these protests doesn’t circulate within the country or reach the rest of the world. Of recent the Ethiopian Government has even resorted to use their Cyber‐crime Act to treat bloggers as terrorists. Ethiopia’s allies, including governments in the region and the African Union, have largely stood by as Ethiopia has steadily strangled the ability of ordinary Ethiopians to access information and peacefully express their views, whether in print or in public demonstrations. But they should be worried about what is happening in Oromia right now, as Ethiopia — Africa’s second most‐populous country and a key security ally of the US — grapples with this escalating crisis.

‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐

Sons and Daughters
By Maya Angelou

If my luck is bad 
And his aim is straight 
I will leave my life 
On the killing field 
You can see me die 
On the nightly news 
As you settle down 
To your evening meal.

But you’ll turn your back 
As you often do 
Yet I am your sons 
And your daughters too. 

In the city streets 
Where the neon lights 
Turn my skin from black 
To electric blue 
My hope soaks red 
On the pavement’s 
gray 
And my dreams die hard 
For my life is through. 

But you’ll turn your back 
As you often do 
Yet I am your sons 
And your daughters too. 

In the little towns 
Of this mighty land 
Where you close your eyes 
To my crying need 
I strike out wild 
And my brother falls 
Turn on your news 
You can watch us bleed.

‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐‐

ECOTERRA Intl.
SURVIVAL & FREEDOM for PEOPLE & NATURE
join the phalanx directly: africanode[at]ecoterra.net
fPcN ‐ interCultural (friends of Peoples close to Nature) e‐mail: collective[at]fpcn‐global.org


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Ethiopia’s Liyyu Police – Devils on Armored Vehicles May 28, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
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HISTORY REPEATING ITSELF IN THE HORN OF AFRICA: IS THE CRIME IN DARFUR BEING REPLICATED IN EASTERN AND SOUTHERN OROMIA REGIONAL STATE OF ETHIOPIA?


It is saddening to witness repetitions of similar tragic events in history. Recurrences of such dreadful events can even sound farcical when they happen in a very short span of both time and space. This is exactly what is currently happening in the Horn of Africa.  It is barely over a decade since the height of the Darfur genocide.  One would hope that the international community has been well informed to avoid repetition of Darfur like tragedy anywhere in the world.  However, it is depressing to observe that the Darfur crisis is in the process of being replicated in Ethiopia.

In this piece, I will explain how the scale of the crisis unfolding in Ethiopia’s Eastern and Southern regions (and those brewing up in other regions) can have a potential to dwarf the Darfur crisis.  The Janjaweed militia (in the case of Sudan) and the so-called Liyyu police (in the case of Ethiopia) are the catalysts for the crisis in their respective regions. For this reason, I will focus my analysis on explaining missions and functions of these two proxy militias.

Sudan’s Janjaweed – Devils on Horseback

In order to draw a parallel between the Darfur and Eastern Oromia, it would prove useful to recap the Janjaweed story.  Janjaweed literally means devils on horseback presumably because the Janjaweed often arrived riding horses while raiding and wreaking havoc in villages belonging to non-Arab ethnic groups. The origin of Janjaweed is rooted in a long established traditional conflict primarily over natural resources such as grazing rights and water control among the nomadic Arabized and the sedentary non-Arabized ethnic groups in Chad and Sudan. The Janjaweed militia were initially created as a pan-Arab Legion by the late Mohammed Gadafi in 1972 to tilt power balance in favor of the Arabized people of the region.  The key point to note here is that the origin of the Janjaweed as well as the conflict between Arabized and non-Arabized people in the region long predates the Darfur crisis which started in 2003.

The beginning of the Darfur crisis signified a confluence of the traditional conflict between ethnic groups with another strand of conflict in the region – the wider conflict between Sudanese national army and regional liberation movements, the Justice and Equality Movement (JEM), and the Sudan Liberation Movement/Army. The latter was still fighting to liberate what has now become South Sudan. In 2003, the government of Sudan encountered setbacks in its military operations against JEM and SPLA. In its desperate attempt to overcome failures in military front and also cover up for its planned ethnic cleansing in Darfur, the Al-Bashir government applied divide and rule tactic, thereby merging the two strands of the conflicts into one.  This was accomplished by organizing, training, arming and providing all necessary logistical support to the Janjaweed militia of the Arabized ethnic group in Darfur.  This was how Al-Bashir’s government has engineered ethnic cleansing and undertaken genocide in Darfur with a brutal efficiency, using the Janjaweed as a proxy militia group.  The number of people killed in Darfur was estimated to range between 178,000 to 462,000. Human rights groups have documented staggering number of rapes and mass evictions and destructions of livelihoods of millions of people in the region.

Ethiopia’s Liyyu Police – Devils on Armored Vehicles

“Liyyu” is an Amharic expression to mean “special”, so Liyyu police denotes a “special police”.  If the Janjaweed are devils on horseback, then Liyyu police can be described as demons maneuvering armored vehicles.  It is instructive to examine why, where, and when the regime in Addis Abeba has created Liyyu police.

The Liyyu police was created in 2008 in the Somali People’s Regional State of the ethnically constituted federal government of Ethiopia.  It is important to note that like any other regional state, the Somali Regional State (SRS henceforth) has a regular police force of its own.  But why was a special police required only for SRS?

The key point is to recognize that Liyyu police is nothing but only a variant of the usual proxy politics that has riddled Ethiopia’s political affair during the ruling EPRDF era.  This special force has no separate existence and no life of its own as such but it is just a proxy militia purposely created to cover up for human right abuses that was being perpetrated by Ethiopia’s National Defense Force (ENDF) but also planned to be intensified in its battles against the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF).

The armed wing of ONLF, the Ogaden National Liberation Army (ONLA), has been engaged in armed conflict with ENDF for many years. This conflict reached a turning point in April 2007, when the ONLA raided an oil field and killed 74 ENDF soldiers and nine Chinese engineers.  This was followed by frequent clashes between ONLA and ENDF. The conflicts have led to gross human rights violations in the region at a scale unheard before. In its report of early 2008, the Human Rights Watch accused the ENDF for committing summary executions, torture, and rape in Ogaden and has called for donors to take necessary measures to stop crimes against humanity.

In an article entitled “Talking Peace in the Ogaden: The search for an end to conflict in the Somali Regional State (SRS) in Ethiopia”, author Tobias Hagmann observes that the creation of Liyyu police is essentially “indigenization of confrontation”.  In other words, the government in Ethiopia established Liyyu police to create a façade that human rights violations in Ogaden and its neighboring regional state are “local conflicts”. This was done pretty much in similar fashion with Sudanese government that resorted to countering freedom fighters in Darfur through the Janjaweed militia.  However, unlike the Janjaweed which were already in place, the government in Ethiopia had to assemble the Liyyu police from scratch, applying doggy recruitment methods, including giving prisoners the choice between joining Liyyu police or remaining in jail. The founder and leader of Liyyu Police was none other than the current President of SRS, Abdi Mohammed Omar, known as “Abdi Illey”, who was security chief at the time.

The size of Liyyu militia is estimated to have grown considerably over the years, currently standing at approximately around 42,000. However, any debate over the size of Liyyu police is essentially a superfluous argument, given that there is a very blurred line between ENDF and Liyyu police.  After all, it requires an expert eye to distinguish between the military fatigues of the two groups. It has been proven time and again that ENDF soldiers often get engaged in military actions disguised as Liyyu police by simply changing their military uniform to that of Liyyu police. In fact, it is a misnomer to consider Liyyu police as a unit separately operating with different military command structure within the Ogaden region.  For all intent and purposes, if we ignore niceties, the Liyyu police is a battalion of Ethiopia’s army operating in the region.

Fomenting Inter-Ethnic Conflict

Liyyu police is a special force with a dual purpose.  The first purpose has already highlighted Liyyu as a camouflage for atrocities being committed by ENDF in the SRS, to relegate such atrocities to a “local affair”, as if it is internal conflict between Somalis themselves.

Liyyu’s second purpose is to aggravate the already existing traditional conflicts between Somalis and Oromos over pasture and water resources.  ONLA in Ogaden and Oromo Liberation Army, OLA (the military wing of the outlawed Oromo Liberation Front – OLF) have frustrated the Ethiopian army for decades.  While OLA has had support all over Oromia, it has traditionally been most active in Eastern and Southern Oromia – Oromia’s districts bordering with the SRS.

Therefore, the EPRDF government realized that it could ride on existing traditional conflicts through a proxy militia to fight two liberation fronts. This was carbon copy of how things were done in Darfur, indicating how dictators learn from each other. Except that the EPRDF had to create Liyyu police from scratch, it acted in similar fashion with the way the Bashir government used the Janjaweed militia in Darfur.

Oromo and Somali herdsmen have traditionally clashed over grazing and water resources but such conflicts have always short-lived due to effective conflict resolution mechanisms practiced by local elders on both sides. These conflict resolution systems have evolved over centuries of peaceful coexistence between the two communities. The EPRDF government’s divide and rule strategy has long targeted to change this equilibrium, and exploit the existing conflict to its advantage.

Conflicts have traditionally arisen when herds arrived at water holes, leading to confrontations as to whose cattle get served first, essentially a conflict over “resource use”, rather than “resource ownership”. Conflicts flare up often among the youth but they were immediately put under control by the elders. Besides, each side are equally equipped with simple tools such as traditional sticks or simple ammunitions, so there has always been power equilibrium.  But the regime sought an effective means of aggravating these conflicts by transforming them in to a permanent one.

Such manipulation of the situation was done essentially in two ways.  First, supplying deadly modern military equipment, training and military logistics to Liyyu police, thereby destabilizing the existing power balance. Second, and critically, by changing the nature of the conflict from “use rights” to “ownership” of the resource itself.  The conflicts were engineered to be elevated from clashes between individual members of communities to that between Somali and Oromo people at a higher scale.

The seeds for conflicts were sown in the process of redrawing borders along adjacent districts of the Somali and Oromia regional states. In this process, the number of contested Kebeles, the lowest administrative units in Ethiopia, were made to suddenly proliferate.  Over a decade ago, the number of such contested kebeles already escalated to well over 400. In order to resolve disputes between the two regional states, a referendum was held in October 2004 in 420 kebeles along 12 districts or five zones of the Somali Region. The outcome of the referendum was that Oromia won 80% of the disputed kebeles and SRS won the remaining kebeles.  Critically, regardless of the outcome, severe damage was already done to durable good-will in community relationships due to purposeful manipulation of the process by the regime in Addis Abeba before, during and after the referendum.

Once the referendum results were known, all the dark forces bent on divide and rule needed to do was to nudge the Somalis to claim that the vote were rigged during the referendum and hence they should aim to get their territory back by other means, that is to say by force and the Liyyu police was created to do the job.

Since it came into existence, Liyyu’s operations have often overlapped but with varying degrees of intensities across its dual-purposes.  During its first phase, Liyyu police focused on operations within Somali region. These operations had much less to do with fighting ONLA but raiding villages and drying up popular support base of the ONLF, in the process committing gross human rights violations at a massive scale. Human rights organizations have widely documented arbitrary detentions, extrajudicial executions, rapes, tortures and ill-treatment of detainees in the region.

Over the years, however, Liyyu’s operations have increasingly focused on the second pillar of the proxy militia’s mission – cross border raids into Oromia.  However, Liyyu’s frequent raids into Oromia have not received enough attention from human rights organizations and hence atrocities committed by this proxy militia on Oromo communities over a decade or so has not been well documented.  The authorities in Addis Abeba, who have purposefully sown seeds of conflict to aggravate traditional clashes, have often deliberately misreported Liyyu Police raids as “the usual fights” between Oromo and Somali herdsmen but nothing could be further from the truth.

In a desperate attempt to gain popular support from the Somali people, the Liyyu police military adventures have been conducted in the name of regaining territory the SRS lost to Oromia during the referendum of 2004.  The evidence one could adduce for this is that every time Liyyu Police encroached into Oromia and occupied a village, they would immediately hoist the Somali flag as a sign of declaring that territorial gains.  The proxy militia has done so after attacking and killing large number of civilians and displacing thousands of households in numerous districts in Eastern Oromia: Qumbi, Mayu Mulluqe, Goohaa, Seelaa Jaajoo, Miinoo. Liyyu Police overrun the town of Moyale in Southern Oromia resulting in the death of dozens of people and forcing tens of thousands to flee to Kenya. It was reported that during an attack on Moyale town in Southern Oromia “the 4th army division [of ENDF] stationed just two miles outside the town center watched silently as the militia overrun the police station and ransacked the town. Then the militia was allowed safe passage to retreat after looting and burning the town while administrators of the Borana province who protested against the army complacency were thrown to jail.”

Alliances and Counter-Alliances

The Oromo Peaceful protests erupted on 12th November 2015 and then engulfed the nation, spreading to all corners of Oromia like a forest fire.  Oromo Protests ignited Amhara resistance, and then ended up with Oromo-Amhara alliance.  It became commonplace to see solidarity slogans on placards carried by protestors both in Amhara and Oromia. It should be noted that Oromo and Amhara population constitute well over two-third of Ethiopia’s population. It was historical acrimony and rivalry between these two dominant ethnic groups which provided a fertile ground for the divide and rule strategy so intensely practiced by the current regime which is dominated by the TPLF, the Tigrean People’s Liberation Front. The Tigre ethnic group account for less than 6% of Ethiopia’s population.

The Oromo-Amhara solidarity sent shock waves among the Tigrean ruling elites.  The Oromo Protest, Amhara Resistance and other popular protests elsewhere in Ethiopia exposed the fake nature of the coalition in the ruling party, the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Front (EPRDF). It has always been an open secret that EPRDF essentially means TPLF (the Tigrean People Liberation Front). The remaining parties, especially the OPDO (Oromo People’s Democratic Party) was cobbled up in haste from prisoners of war when TPLF was approaching Addis Abeba to control power by ousting the military junta back in 1991. However, even the so-called OPDO – lately joined by the Amhara National Democratic Movement (ANDM) – felt empowered by the popular protests in their respective regions sending a clear sign that TPLF was about to be left naked with its garbs removed.

Now that the Tigreans realized that they cannot reply on dividing Oromo and Amhara any more, they resorted to another variant of divide and rule – fostering alliance between minorities to withstand the impending solidarity between the two majority ethnic groups. This strategic shift was elucidated by two most senior TPLF veterans, Abay Tsehaye and Seyoum Mesfin, in their two-part interview conducted (in Amharic) with the government affiliated Fana Broadcasting Corporation. The TPLF-dominated-EPRD’s new strategy was to present the Oromo-Amhara coalition as a threat to the minority ethnic groups, such as Tigre and Somali.  The regime has already experimented pitting minority against majority at different scales: Tigreans against the rest of Ethiopians at national scale, Somali against Oromo at regional scale, and many more similar fabricated divisions at regional and local levels in many communities across Ethiopia.  What is new is the fact that these two relatively separate strands are explicitly brought together and extensively implemented at national scale.

In addition to the interview cited above, one can adduce more evidences to illustrate the new machination by the Tigre and Somali political and security alliance.  For instance, there was an incidence in which Amhara popular uprising caused some ethnic Tigreans to get relocated from the Amhara regional state. What happened next raised eyebrows of many observers: Abdi Mohamoud Omar, SRS President who rules his people with iron fist, declared his cabinet’s endorsement to “donate 10 million birr for displaced innocent Ethiopian people [Tigreans] from Gondar & Bahir Dar cities of the Amhara regional state”.

Further evidence regarding the maneuvering of minority alliance with deadly intent comes from Aigaforum, a TPLF mouthpiece. In an article entitled “Liyyu Police: The Savior”, the website came up with the following jumbled up assertion: “they [Liyyu Police] are from the people and for the people of Somali region; to protect the honor and dignity of their own people and overall Security of the region, and Ethiopia at large. This special force has a mandate primarily to protect the people of [the] region, to secure and stabilize the aged conflict in Somali region of Ethiopia.  This Special force is not like a tribal militia from any specific clan or sub-clan in the region, rather they are holistic and governmental arms —who are well screened, registered and recruited from kebeles and woredas and trained [as per the] standards [of] Ethiopian military training package and armed with modern military equipment. Besides being regional state special forces; they are part and parcel of Ethiopian arm[y].”

In an overzealous effort to glorify the devilish proxy militia, aigaforum inadvertently exposes TPLF by admitting that actually Liyyu Police is part and parcel of the national army, a fact the TPLF politicians have never admitted in public.

Towards full-scale atrocity?

The alliance between Tigre elites and Abdi Mohammed Omar’s cabinet got manifested in the transformation of Liyyu police’s mission from sporadic military excursions to full scale invasion of Oromia. This started by deploying Liyyu police in Oromia to attack and disburse peaceful protestors. For instance, based on eye witness accounts Land-info reported that starting from January 2016 Liyu Police was being used against Oromo demonstrators in many locations, including in Dire Dawa and Bededo.

By the third quarter of 2016, popular protests did not only intensify but literally covered most parts of the country.  However, protests that were inherently peaceful were transformed into confrontations between the protestors and the security forces because the latter have already mowed down the lives of hundreds of innocent civilians during the previous months.  In a desperate attempt to hang onto power, the TPLF dominated regime enacted a State of Emergency (SoE) on October 8, 2016.

An essential component of the SoE is securitization of many regions and transport corridors in Ethiopia.   Particularly, Oromia, the birth place of the latest popular protest, was literally converted into a “high security prison” and Oromos were effectively “put under house arrest”.  Oromia’s regional government was made redundant, being replaced at all levels by Military Command Posts, a form of local and regional government by a committee of armed officers. This was exactly the way it has been for the most part of the previous two decades except that the SoE signaled a temporary move to direct control by the military, abandoning the all too familiar indirect controls through puppet civilian parties such as OPDO.

Soon after the SoE was enacted, Abdi Illey declared an all-out war and the Liyyu Police was unleashed on all fronts along the Oromia and SRS boundary, stretching over a total of close to 1200 km. According to information from the Oromia Regional State, the 14 districts affected in the latest wave of Liyyu Police invasion are: Qumbi, Cinaksan, Midhaga Tola, Gursum, Mayu Muluqe and Babile in East Hararghe; Bordode in West Hararghe; Dawe Sarar, Sawena, Mada Walabu and Rayitu in Bale; Gumi Eldelo and Liban in Guji; and Moyale in Borana.  It is highly significant to note that there is at least 500 km “as the-crow-flies” distance between Qumbi (extreme North East) and Moyale (extreme South West).  Therefore, the sheer number of districts affected, the physical distances between them, and the simultaneous attacks at all fronts indicate that Liyyu’s latest invasion of Oromia is a highly sophisticated and coordinated military adventure which can only be understood as planned by the TPLF-dominated regime’s military central command.

The SoE was enacted with explicit intention of laying information blackout all over Ethiopia, particularly in the highly securitized Oromia Regional State.   For this reason, it is difficult to obtain reliable estimates on victims of Liyyu’s invasion of Oromia.  Human Rights Watch (HRW) has been receiving reports that dozens of casualties have been, including many civilians in Oromia but “[R]estrictions on access have made it difficult to corroborate details.” Locals indicate that Liyyu police have so far killed large numbers of civilians.  Oromo civilians have given up with the hope of getting any meaningful protection from ENDF, given that by now it has become an open secret that the latter is complicit in the invasion.  Consequently, in a desperate act of survival, Oromos have organized a civilian defense force.  Based on incidents of confrontation between Liyyu Police and Oromo civilian defense force around 23rd February 2017 in Southern Oromia, the Human Rights League for Horn of Africa (HRLHA) reported about 500 people were killed, over 200 injured.  If so much destruction has happened in a few days and few districts, then it is possible to imagine that wanton destructions must have been happening during several months of Liyyu police’s occupation in all districts across the long stretch along the Oromia-Somali region boundaries.  Opride, an online media, reported: “Mothers and young girls have been gang raped, according to one Mayu resident, who spoke to OPride by phone. He said the attacking Liyu Police were fully armed and they moved about in armored vehicles brandishing machine guns and other heavy weapons. They stole cattle, goats, camels and other properties.”

Publicity and Accountability

When it comes to publicity and awareness, Darfur and Eastern Oromia can only be contrasted.  Although it did not lead to avoiding large-scale atrocities, the international community got involved in the case of Darfur at much early stage of the crisis.  On the contrary, it is well over a decade now since Abdi Illey’s Liyyu police began rampaging in Ogaden as well as Oromia but the international community has chosen to turn a blind eye to the regional crisis, which has gained momentum and now nearly getting out of control.

Perhaps the reason gross human rights violations by Liyyu Police has been ignored or tolerated by the international community lies in the fact that some donors have been directly implicated in financing and supporting the paramilitary group. For instance, the British Press has repeatedly accused DFID for wasting UK tax payer money on providing training to the Somali Liyyu Police.  Similarly, there are evidences to suggest that the notorious proxy militia has also been funded by the US government.  It is no wonder then that the UK, US, and the rest of the international community have ignored for so long the unruly Liyyu Police’s military adventures in Ogaden and Oromia.

Last week, the HRW released a report entitled Ethiopia: No Justice in Somali Region Killings. This report is timely in raising awareness of the general public as well as drawing the attention of authorities in the UK and the US, who are most directly implicated with financing the militia group.  However, I would hasten to add that what has been lacking is the political will to act and curb the activities of Liyuu police.  Starting from 2008 the HRW has released numerous similar reports but this did not stop the atrocities the paramilitary group is committing from escalating over the years.

The HRW’s report asserting that “Paramilitary Force Killed 21, Detained Dozens, in June 2016”, indicates that the report is anchored on an incident that happened in SRS about ten months ago.  Although the focus of the report was on the particular incident in SRS, it has also highlighted Liyyu Police’s latest atrocities in Oromia.  As indicated in the report, the SoE related movement restrictions means the HRW had to release the report on the incidence in SRS with ten months delay.  Clearly, HRW and other human rights organizations could not undertake any meaningful independent assessment on the damages caused by the latest invasion into Oromia.  The point here is that while HRW has been grabbling with conducting inquiries into a case in which dozens of people were killed or detained in SRS in mid-2016, Liyyu police has killed and abducted hundreds in Oromia since the start of 2017.

The TPLF dominated EPRDF regime in Addis Abeba has long started sowing the seeds of divide and rule strategy coupled with deliberate acts of fomenting conflicts between different communities.  The motivation is pretty clear –it is an act of survival, a minority rule can sustain itself only if it turned other ethnic groups against each other.  The case of Liyyu Police and its latest invasion of Oromia fits into that scheme.

If not addressed timely and decisively, Liyyu Police’s invasion of Oromia has a potential to turn into a full-blown atrocities that is likely to dwarf what happened in Darfur. Clearly, the tell-tale signs are already in place. Genocide Watch, the international alliance to end genocide, states that “Genocide is always organized, usually by the state, often using militias to provide deniability of state responsibility (the Janjaweed in Darfur.) Sometimes organization is informal (Hindu mobs led by local RSS militants) or decentralized (terrorist groups.) Special army units or militias are often trained and armed. Plans are made for genocidal killings.”

In Ethiopia, this situation on the ground is rapidly changing and it requires an urgent response from the international community.


 

Fear of Investigation: What Does Ethiopia’s Government Have to Hide? April 21, 2017

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Fear of Investigation: What Does Ethiopia’s Government Have to Hide?

 

In February 2016, an 18-year-old student who I will call Tolessa and two friends took part in their first protest, in Oromia’s East Hararghe zone. As the crowd moved forward, they were met by a line of regional police, federal police and the army. Shortly thereafter and without warning, security forces fired live ammunition into the crowd hitting Tolessa four times. Miraculously he survived. But his two friends were not so lucky.

I first interviewed him in April 2016 for the Human Rights Watch June 2016 report on abuses during the first six months of the Oromo protests. Several days ago, Tolessa got in touch with me again to update me on his condition.

I spoke to him around the time that Ethiopia’s national Human Rights Commission submitted an oral report to parliament on the protests. This was the Commission’s second report to parliament, covering the protests between June and September in parts of Oromia, Amhara, and SNNPR regions. The Commission found that 669 people were killed, including 63 members of the security forces, and concluded – once again – that security forces had taken “proportionate measures in most areas.”

While many will focus on the death toll, the commission’s conclusion that the use of force was mostly proportionate and appropriate is in stark contrast to the descriptions of victims like Tolessa, and at odds with the findings of other independent investigators. At this stage, the grounds for the commission’s conclusion are unclear, since no written report has yet been published.

In its first oral report to parliament, in June, the commission similarly concluded that the level of force used by federal security forces in Oromia was proportionate. The written version of this report was only made public this week, 10 months later. In the 92 page English version [134 pages in Amharic] there is no mention of security forces firing on protesters, mass arrests, torture in detention, or any one of a slew of other abuses that have been widely reported.

Instead, the commission largely describes violence committed by protesters as described to the commission members by local government officials, security forces, and elders. It parrots the government’s narrative, making many references to Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) involvement, but never provides any evidence for this allegation. It references interviews with detainees, but otherwise fails to describe the commission’s methodology, including how many protesters, victims, and witnesses its members interviewed.

It’s quite possible that many protesters and victims of security force abuses would not speak to the commission because of the widespread perception that it has no independence from the government. Independence is crucial for any successful national human rights commission, and the Ethiopian institution has failed to meet this bar for many years. I know first-hand that it is not difficult to find protesters willing to share their experiences.

Armed security officials watch as protesters stage a protest against government during the Irreechaa cultural festival in Bishoftu, Ethiopia on October 02, 2016.

Armed security officials watch as protesters stage a protest against government during the Irreechaa cultural festival in Bishoftu, Ethiopia on October 02, 2016.

Aside from the commission’s activities, there is no domestic scrutiny of security force abuses. The members of parliament are all from the ruling party and affiliates. The judiciary lacks independence on politically motivated cases. Various courts have consistently refused to investigate mounting allegations of torture from detainees. Harassment, prosecutions, and swathes of restrictions have stifled independent media and nongovernmental organizations. In this situation, the commission and other “independent” institutions like the ombudsmen could play a vital role in scrutinizing abuse by Ethiopia’s security forces, but they too are apparently hamstrung by government influence.

The government consistently tries to frame the protests as the result of lack of “good governance” and youth unemployment. Yet one of the most common slogans heard on the streets of Oromia and Amhara, particularly in the later months of the protests, was a call to respect human rights, stop shooting protesters, and stop imprisoning students. The patterns of abuse documented by several human rights groups in Oromia  during various periods, including the 2005 pre-election period and between 2011-2014 are strikingly similar.  In each case, the government ignored calls for independent investigations, denied the allegations, and claimed they were politically motivated. These longstanding patterns of abuse against those who challenge the government, committed with complete impunity, are key to understanding the levels of anger fueling protests in the streets of Oromia over the last 18 months. And Oromia isn’t the only place in Ethiopia that has experienced serious rights violations by security forces – sometimes repeatedly – without meaningful investigations.

In Gambella, Human Rights Watch documented possible crimes against humanity by the Ethiopian army in 2003 and 2004, including extrajudicial executions, rape, and torture. In the Somali Regional State (SRS), the Ethiopian military committed war crimes and possibly crimes against humanity between mid-2007 and 2008 during their counterinsurgency campaign against the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF). The government-allied Liyu police have subsequently committed numerous extrajudicial killings, torture, rape, and other attacks on civilians in SRS. Instead of permitting independent investigators to come in, the Ethiopian government consistently shuts the door and insists that Ethiopian institutions, such as the Human Rights Commission, can do the job.

I asked Tolessa his view of the commission. He said it’s “just another arm of the government,” and noted that the its head, Dr Addisu Gebregziabher, was previously chair of the National Electoral Board, another body with questionable independence. While the commission’s lack of independence is hardly newsworthy, it does underscore the need for independent, international scrutiny of Ethiopia’s rights record, especially given the government’s dubious claims that the commission’s investigations are credible. Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn reiterated this claim during an April 18 interview with the BBC, rejecting calls for a UN investigation into the protests by stating that Ethiopia is “an independent country that can investigate its own cases.” Yet these repeated refusals beg the question: if the security forces acted appropriately, then what is the government trying to hide?

Ethiopia is currently a member of both the United Nations Security Council and the United Nations Human Rights Council, which requires it to uphold the “highest standards of human rights.” Yet the government repeatedly rejects efforts to hold it to account, refusing entry to all UN special rapporteurs since 2007, except the Special Rapporteur on Eritrea. There are many outstanding requests from these UN monitors – on torture, freedom of opinion and expression, and peaceful assembly, among others. Recent calls by the United Nations top human rights official, the African Commission, the European parliament, and some members of United States Congress, for international investigations have all been dismissed. The government also avoids judicial scrutiny at the highest level as it is not a member of the International Criminal Court (ICC).

Ethiopia is certainly not alone in disliking international scrutiny of its rights record, yet many countries recognize that there are benefits to cooperation, particularly if there is genuine commitment to transparency, accountability, and improving human rights. Ethiopia’s continuous refusals call into question all of these commitments, instead making clear that it is not willing to stop using excessive force against protesters or torturing dissenters into silence.

Human Rights Watch research in many countries has demonstrated that a decision to ignore atrocities and reinforce a culture of impunity carries a high price, and merely encourages future abuses, which  should concern investors, diplomats, and others concerned about the long-term stability of Ethiopia following almost 18 months of bloody turmoil. An international investigation would be a first important step in ending Ethiopia’s culture of impunity and would send a powerful and overdue message to the Ethiopian government that its security forces cannot shoot and kill peaceful protesters with impunity. And it would send an important message to victims like Tolessa that their pleas for justice are being heard.


 

IFEX: The police brutalities resulted in several deaths: A death toll of 150 was recorded in Ethiopia, 32 in DRC and one in Mali. March 24, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests.
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In this photo taken on 2 October 2016, Ethiopian soldiers try to stop protesters in Bishoftu, Ethiopia
In this photo taken on 2 October 2016, Ethiopian soldiers try to stop protesters in Bishoftu, Ethiopia

AP Photo


This statement was originally published on africafex.org on 21 March 2017.


A total of 183 deaths were recorded from July to December 2016 following clashes between protestors and security agents in three countries – Ethiopia, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and Mali.

In each of the three countries, security agents used excessive force to disperse protestors who were demonstrating against specific issues in their respective countries. The police brutalities resulted in several deaths. A death toll of 150 was recorded in Ethiopia, 32 in DRC and one in Mali.

To date, not one security agent has been prosecuted for any of the killings in the three countries.

Unfortunately, this is just one of the many violations perpetrated against protestors, journalists and media organisations in Africa as reported in the maiden edition of the Freedom of Expression Situation in Africa report by the African Freedom of Expression Exchange (AFEX) compiled for the period July to December 2016.

The periodic Freedom of Expression Situation in Africa Report is an intervention by AFEX that seeks to monitor and report on FOE violations (including violations against freedom of assembly and association) and other developments in Africa for the timely intervention by appropriate stakeholders.

Over the six-month period, 63 incidents of violation were recorded in 19 countries across the African continent. State security apparatus were the main perpetrators of the violations. Together, they were responsible for 57 percent (36) of the 63 violations.

State security agents were not only responsible for the killing of the 183 protestors in the three countries; they were also the perpetrators of all 19 incidents of arrests and detentions in 10 of the 19 countries covered in the report. in addition, five out of six media organisations were shut down by state security agents.

State officials were also found to be perpetrators of media and FOE rights violations both online and offline. Of the 63 violations, 10 were carried out by/on the orders of state officials. Thus, state actors were generally the main perpetrators of the various violations reported in the Freedom of Expression Situation in Africa report.

Sadly, only seven out of 63 recorded violations received some form of redress actions.

For the full report on the types of violations cited, other perpetrators, the 19 countries monitored and the targets of the violations, click here.


 

Ethiopia: List of Fascsit TPLF Military and Intelligence officers involved in planning and commanding the Somali region Liyu Police mercenary paramilitary conducting genocide against the Oromo People March 19, 2017

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List of TPLF Military and Intelligence officers involved in planning and commanding the Somali region Liyu Police mercenary paramilitary


1. Col. Gebremedihin Gebre, Shhinelle Zone Coordinator and deputy commander of Somali Special Forces
2 Col. Fiseha, chief of intelligence of somali regional government, specializing particularly in Oromos and Oromia issue, also heads and supervises Fefem zone security
3. Col. Gitet Tesfaye , coordinates and leads disputed borders issue and security
4. Major Desalegn Haddish, Babile front intelligence chief
5 Major Abraha Sisay, heads training of mercenaries and somali recruits at Bobas training center
6 Brigadier General Hadgu Belay, advisor to the president of Somali region on security and organizational affairs on security at regional government level
7 Col. Gebretensae, heads and coordinates Somali militias organization Oromo mercenaries working with the TPLF officials
1. Lieutenant Hassan Ali, former member of defense forces of Ethiopia, now commands a Liyu Police unit consisting 120 members at attacking Erer district( wereda)
2. Captain Mohammed Ibrahim, with a unit of 120 members at Babile front( WEREDA)
3 Sergeant Usman Mohammed, Garalencha district
4 Sergeant Jibril Ahmed spies on Oromo militia in Gursum district, to Fafam direction
5 Sergeant Mohamed Usman, Raqe, Meyu Muluke areas military operations
6 Sergeant Fuad Aliyi, Chinaksen district
* The Liyu Police and Somali region militia are organized in 26 regiment each consisting up to 500 personnel.


 

Why fascist TPLF Ethiopia’s regime waging a proxy war on the Oromo through the Liyu Police? March 9, 2017

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Why is Ethiopia waging a proxy war on the Oromo through the Liyu Police?

By: Nadhii G. Hawaas


This article explores the raison d’être for why the Neo-Agazians – the king makers in the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), a.k.a. the present-day rulers of Ethiopia – have adopted a non-intuitive strategy of waging a war of attrition against the Oromo through a notoriously brutal proxy, the ill-reputed Liyu Police of the Somali region; whilst they were rather widely expected to reassess their current policy and attempt to pacify Oromia – a state that has been the epicenter of a historic and heroic popular opposition against the government in the last three years. In my opinion, here are some of the primary reasons.

Why is Ethiopia waging a proxy war on the Oromo through the Liyu Police?

The obsession to smoke out and defeat the Oromo Liberation Army:

TPLF’s general disposition and military escapades over the last twenty five years, would lead a neutral analyst to the conclusion that it is obsessed, more than anything else, with the goal of dismantling the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) and its army. As a result of this fixation, Afaan Oromo has earned the unique distinction of becoming Ethiopia’s “language of prisons”, and Oromia has turned into the killing field of the Horn of Africa, where all sorts of human rights abuses are the norm. TPLF’s various military adventures in the Horn of Africa – from its various illegal military interventions in

(Ayyaantuu) -Somalia to its regular incursions into Kenya, as well as its so-called peacekeeping missions in south Sudan – are all motivated by what appears to be a preoccupation to deny the Oromo liberation army (OLA) a base of operation. These military adventures have been carried out without due regard for the cost in human lives, but they have allowed the regime to stay in power by weakening its greatest homegrown threat which comes in the form of OLA.

There is no doubt that the OLF has been downgraded, partly as a result of these actions by the TPLF and the resulting geo-political outcomes. The OLA has diminished in size and effectiveness from its heyday in the late 1980’s, when it was able to engage two formidable opponents – the Sudan People’s Liberation Army and the Ethiopian army in the west, and the latter in the east and the southeast – and thrive at the same time. TPLF’s strategic maneuver and direct military interventions in the neighboring countries contiguous to Oromia in the last two decades should thus be seen in light of its fixation to deny its strategic nemesis, the OLF, a military base of operation – an objective in which it has succeeded to a great extent, thus far.

But, judging by events that have transpired in Oromia in the last three years, particularly in 2016, it appears that the OLF has adapted to these difficult geo-political circumstances and could be poised to take on the TPLF more vigorously than before. Notwithstanding the misguided efforts by some in the diaspora to hijack the Oromo Protests, there are clear signals that the protest movement is orchestrated by the OLF. This development has shaken the regime to its core, from which it is likely not going to able to recover. The Oromo Protests have put the TPLF in unfamiliar territory, forcing it to react to facts on the ground its adversary has set in motion. Albeit at tremendous cost to Oromo lives, round one of this phase of the conflict between the OLF and the TPLF was decisively concluded with the latter substantially degraded politically and economically, if not militarily yet, invigorating the former substantially. Therefore, the ground work seems to have been laid for round two and perhaps the decisive stage of this phase of the conflict; and judging by its current activities, the TPLF is mightily worried (as it should be) about the likely outcomes.

One of the dangerous policies the TPLF is pursuing currently to foil what is shaping up to be a historic faceoff between its forces and Oromo freedom fighters, is to unleash the notorious Somali region paramilitary group on peaceful Oromo citizens in the east, the south and the southeast. In my opinion, the main purpose of this move is to provoke OLF fighters to come out of the woodwork, as it were, in order to engage them militarily before more recent events have a chance to solidify in ways that will benefit the combatants. Based on certain signals that are out there, the OLF might have succeeded in embedding its forces in certain communities in Oromia, and it would be reasonable to assume that the TPLF wants to flush these Oromo fighters by goading them into battles of its choosing. It is a clever move, but it doesn’t appear that the OLF is taking the bait.

Why is Ethiopia waging a proxy war on the Oromo through the Liyu Police?

The best defense is a good offense:
The principle of “the best defense is a good offense” has successfully been employed in many areas of life that are guided by strategic interactions between two or more actors. Whether it is sporting competitions, competitions for market, or more consequential human conflicts such as wars, players that prevail are often times those that strike first and knock their opponents off their game plan, forcing them to react. Successful war generals and strategic thinkers – including George Washington, Mao Zedong, Machiavelli and others – have utilized this principle with remarkable success.

The TPLF has used this adage throughout its existence – both in the military and the political arenas – initially against the fearsome Dergue, and later on against all opposition parties, including the OLF. In all the engagements I personally witnessed closely, for instance, the TPLF always seemed to relish the initiative to attack – often with surprising speed and agility – forcing its opponents to scramble to assume defensive positions, denying them opportunities to launch their own attacks. The surviving members of Dergue’s armed forces could speak more competently than I can about the efficacy of TPLF’s famed Qorexa tactics in the battle field.

With the OLF adapting to the aforementioned difficult geo-political realities in the Horn of Africa, and OLA likely getting deeply rooted in Oromia, the TPLF appears to have lost the strategic edge it has worked so hard to achieve and maintain. The Oromo Protests have exposed its weaknesses so unmistakably, sending a clear signal to potential partners or enemies, big or small, that the “dogs from Tigray” might have just been neutered and may not have potent bites anymore. Notice the most recent political developments in Somalia, South Sudan, the European Parliament, and even some corners of the US government – developments that mark that the ground has begun shifting from under the TPLF. Therefore, with no obvious OLF military camp it can attack, and a realization setting in among its senior ranks that its strategic opponent might have regrouped enough to start putting some non-trivial points on the board; the TPLF is undertaking unprovoked military aggressions against Oromo civilians in the east, the southeast, the south, and the west via its proxy paramilitary units, certain that the oppressive system it has built over the years cannot be sustained if it is perceived to have lost its mojo. Thus, its latest move is most likely a desperate attempt to send a signal to its friends and foes that it is in control and still calling the shots.

Attempting to ingratiate to the Oromo a Trojan-Horse named the OPDO:

One of the remarkable outcomes of the Oromo Protests was that it annihilated the intricate and oppressive state structure the TPLF had built in Oromia using the so-called Oromo People’s Democratic Organization (OPDO), an outfit that was created by TPLF to rule and exploit the Oromo. The TPLF doesn’t stand a chance to rule Oromia without the OPDO serving the purpose for which it was invented. To reinstitute its tentacles throughout Oromia, therefore, the TPLF is employing a number of obvious and subtle strategies including the following: launching different initiatives meant to seduce the unemployed youth; promoting a few “educated” Oromo individuals to positions of power; and most importantly, undertaking moves that might ingratiate the OPDO to the Oromo. Lemma Megersa – the shiny-new telegenic puppet of the regime– is assigned a role of play-acting as the second coming of Tadesse Birru on TV, although he is little more than a pawn in a game being conducted behind his back against his own people.

If implemented properly, the unfolding strategy of unleashing the Liyu police on the Oromo would also contribute to the objective of endearing the OPDO to the Oromo to a certain extent. Here is a two-sentence script for this play: The TPLF invades the Oromo by using its proxies just enough to rile up the Oromo from coast-to-coast; then boom, the OPDO comes to the rescue, turning – contrary to reason and logic – into a “legitimate” Oromo organization that can protect the interests of its constituents. Arguably, this drama has thus far played out as planned by its authors, considering how many Oromo activists have fallen for this cruel scheme. Just because they uttered nationalistic soundbites on state TV, some members of the so-called Caffee Oromiyaa are being promoted as defenders of Oromo national interests by individuals who should know better, indicating that the Neo-Agazians might have achieved some of their short term objectives by making the OPDO an acceptable alternative to a segment of our traumatized population. The Oromo national trauma must be so deep that many mistake the enablers of their abusers for their saviors.

Breaking the thriving morale of the Oromo:

Events that have transpired in the last three years in Oromia – particularly the well-orchestrated massacre at the Irreechaa festival on October 2, 2016 and the ethnic cleansing operations being carried out against the Oromo of Hararge, Bale, Guji, Borana, and some parts of Wollega – are well-designed operations by TPLF aimed at, among other things, breaking the thriving morale of the Oromo and checking the rising tide of Oromo nationalism. The TPLF has always banked on riding Oromo nationalism that it believed could be manipulated at will to exploit Oromo resources, and utilized to engage in a campaign against the traditional and historical nemesis of Tigray – the Amhara elites. When this strategy failed – with the Oromo taking a heroic stand to challenge its monopoly of power and exploitation of their resources; and the Oromo and the Amhara showing some signs of solidarity, even if tactically – it resorted to a war of attrition against the Oromo, foolishly thinking that that would break the thriving morale of the Oromo and put the genie back in the bottle.

For those capable of discerning the zeitgeist in contemporary Ethiopia, however, the writing on the wall is unmistakable: Oromo nationalism has prevailed against all odds – thanks to the sacrifices of countless precious Oromo children – and will continue to develop at a pace determined largely by the dialectics within Oromo society. No amount of treacherous designs by the current rulers of Ethiopia, or the ill-will of those who wish to dismantle it, can derail it from its current auspicious trajectory.

Avenging for the loss it has sustained politically, diplomatically, and financially due to Oromo Protests:

As stated earlier, the Oromo Protests have inflicted heavy losses – politically, diplomatically, and financially – on the TPLF from which it will never recover. Although this is not how smart strategic players are supposed to conduct themselves in high-stakes political games, I can’t put it beyond the realm of possibility that avenging for these losses might just be one of the motivating factors for the dangerous course the TPLF has chosen recently. To the extent that the Neo-Agazians are disposed towards having a sense of entitlement to the political and economic power they are currently enjoying undeservedly (there are plenty of evidences indicating that this might be the case), their lashing out against the Oromo – a nation that has effectively foiled their long-term objective of developing Tigray at the expense of Oromia – should not be unexpected.

In summary, the TPLF is a severely wounded entity that is running out of options faster than most so-called experts of the Horn of Africa anticipated. There will not be any measure it will not pursue in order to stay in power for as long as it is feasible. For now, Abay Tsehay and co. are using Abdi Iley and his UK-financed killing-squads as a “Hail Mary pass” to see if that could extricate the TPLF out of its desperate situation. The OLF is expected to execute its game plan with discipline, focusing on the real prize, disregarding the white noise coming out of the diaspora in the virtual space.


Related:

Bob Zimmer, Member of Parliament for Prince George-Peace River-Northern Rockies, Canada has expressed solidarity for #OromoProtests.

ETHIOPIA: FASCIST TPLF’S PROXY WAR THROUGH THE LIYU POLICE March 2, 2017

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Via Oromo-American Citizens Council

For immediate release:

February 27, 2017

TPLF’S PROXY WAR THROUGH THE LIYU POLICE

The OACC is alarmed by the unsettling grave situation transpiring in Oromia today. Just when you think it couldn’t get any worse, the TPLF has hit a new low.  The revival and strengthening of Oromo protest over the last two years had shaken the TPLF/EPRDF regime to its core. Even though it has by and large installed military administration using the so called State of Emergency declaration, the TPLF knows that this is a temporary fix that cannot stop the impending Oromo uprising. The regime has realized that it cannot quell the Oromo movement and rule as before.

Therefore, in addition to its old tactic of dividing the Oromo within itself, the regime has now devised and rolled out a new tactic aimed at averting the Oromo rage from itself to a new foe it is fabricating for the Oromos.  This new tactic is instigating conflict between the Oromo and all its neighbors. In the last few months, the regime has partially succeeded in one area. In using the puppet Somali regional state, that has committed untold atrocities against its own people, TPLF has declared war and annexed some Oromia territories to Somalia region.

As a result of the terroristic and violent action of the notorious semi criminal roving band called Liyu Police, to date more than two-hundred Oromos are killed and many more hundreds are maimed, and thousands of goats and chattels are looted from the people.  In addition, thousands are evicted from their land and homes. The Liyu Police, with the blessing of the Ethiopia government, is today occupying significant part of Oromia.  Unless stopped immediately, this has a great consequence for the future territorial integrity of Oromia.

Evidence is coming out that the regular TPLF army members are not only participating in the Liyu Police raids against the Oromo population, but are also leading it from behind. One of the fundamental functions of any government is to keep peace and stability. In Ethiopia, the irony is that it is the government that foments conflict and instability.

The Oromo and Somali population should not fall prey to this malicious TPLF tactic of divide and rule. There is no enmity between the Oromo and Somali population. They should rather be wise and stand together and fight this cancerous regime that is becoming the source of all conflict in the country.

Unless and until it is removed from power, it should definitely be expected that the TPLF will concoct similar conflicts between the Oromo and other ethnic groups. Thus, it’s incumbent on the Oromo population to keep vigilant and guard against such political machinations.

It is only the lack of strong Oromo government and the division between the Oromos that has made Oromia vulnerable and to be overrun by any force at will.  And it’s only the concerted effort of the Oromo population, in alliance with all peace loving peoples of Ethiopia, that can put an end to this troubling situation.

Today, it is the Somali militia, and tomorrow, unless we are prepared, it’s going to be militia forces from other regions that are going to occupy and slaughter our defenseless and forsaken population with impunity. Therefore, it is high time that all Oromos, including those in the government who still have a little nationalism left in them, come together, strengthen their unity, and confront this dangerous situation in unison.

This is a national issue that should worry every Oromo irrespective of any political and any other differences. At this crucial stage of our people’s struggle, it’s especially incumbent on Oromo political organizations, by taking into account the gravity of the situation, to close their gap more than any other time, and lead our people to the final victory.

Oromo-American Citizens Council (OACC) is a Minnesota non-profit organization established and functioning since 2002. We are made up of Oromo-Americans and others who are concerned about Oromo issues. Among others, we advocate for equal rights of Oromos in Ethiopia, expose human rights violations, and help initiate dialogue and reconciliation among various Ethiopian groups.

Human Rights League: ETHIOPIA: The Ethiopian Government is Plotting a War Among the Nations and Nationalities in Ethiopia February 28, 2017

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ETHIOPIA:  The Ethiopian Government is Plotting a War Among  the Nations and Nationalities in Ethiopia

 

HRLHA Press Release


HRLHAFebruary 26, 2017

The  Ethiopian Somali Liyu Police led by the Ethiopian Federal government’s killing squad have been engaged in a cruel war for the past six months against the Oromo nation in fifteen districts of Oromia.   The Oromia districts that have been invaded by the two aforementioned forces are in east and east- west Hararge Zone, Eastern Oromia,  Guji,  Borana and  Bale, South Oromia zones, Southern Oromia of Oromia Regional State.

Nations

Somali Liyu Police Invading Southern Oromia

The Ethiopian Federal government, which in theory has a state duty and a responsibility to bring peace and harmony among the nations and nationalities in the country, is actually engaged in instigating a war between the Ethiopian Somali and Oromo nations. High casualties have been registered on both sides in the past six months.  Hundreds of Ethiopian Somali Liyu Police led by the Federal government’s killing squad have entered into Oromia villages, attacked and killed and abducted hundreds of Oromos and looted properties; over 750 goats, ships,  and camels were taken.

According to the HRLHA informants, the Oromia Regional State nominal administrative leaders, including Lema Megersa- the president- turned a blind eye while the citizens they claimed to be governing have been killed,  abducted, and displaced from their lands and villages  and dehumanized by the warriors of the  Ethiopian Somali Liyu Police led by the Federal government of Ethiopa’s killing squad.

Recently, the invasion into Oromia has expanded into the western part of Oromia Regional State. The Federal government force in Gambela crossed into West Wallaga, Oromia Regional State villages and displaced thousands of Oromos in Qelem Zone of Anfillo and Yatii districts. The HRLHA informants also disclosed that the Ethiopian Killing squad force is on intensive training on the western side of Oromia regional state boundary in Benshangul regional state preparing to invade Oromo villages in the western part of Wallaga zone of Oromia Regional State.

During the recent skirmish between Liyu  Police and Oromo people on February 23, 2017, in  Bale, Sawena district at Qilessa village Southern Oromia,  19 Oromos were killed and 13 wounded. In the same fight,  35 were killed and 50 wounded from the Ethiopian Somali Liyu  Police invaders by Oromo civilian resistance force.

According to the HRLHA informants, the total casualties in connection with the invasion by the  Ethiopian -Somali Liyu Police led by the Federal government’s killing squad in Oromia Zones of Guji, Borana, Bale and east and west Hararge zones caused the deaths of over 200 Oromos and injured over 150 and many were abducted and taken to Somali Region. The report from our informants also confirmed  Oromo self-defense civilians killed over 260 invaders,  members of  Liyu police and Ethiopian Federal Killing squads, and injured many others.

This meaningless and reckless action by the Ethiopian Federal government will destabilize the region in general and Ethiopia in particular.

It is clear that the  Ethiopian Federal government is demonstrating its hidden agenda- to eliminate the Oromo nation under the pretext of boundary conflict between nations and nationalities. During the  Oromo self-defense attack against Somali  Liyu Police, many invaders were killed and others injured. This shows that the plan to invade  Oromia in all directions may lead to a  civil war, which suggests that the Federal  Government of Ethiopia is deliberately plotting to cause a war among nations and nationalities in the country.

Background

Ethiopians have been under extreme repression ever since  October 8, 2016- a State of Emergency in fact.  The Ethiopian government has used a state of emergency in order to kill, imprison and abduct citizens from their homes and workplaces in Oromia and Amhara regional states. During the past four months- under the State of Emergency- over  70,000 Oromos,  including pregnant women, seniors and underage children have been taken to concentration camps in Xolay, Zubway, Didessa, Huriso and other places. There, they have been tortured, exposed to communicable diseases and malnutrition from which hundreds have died.

 

The cause of the civilian unrest in Ethiopia during the past two years was the marginalization of the citizens from the political and fair distribution of their economic resources; they have also been evicted from their ancestral lands without consultation and compensation. Evictions from the land around the city of Addis Ababa after the declaration of ” The Addis Ababa Integrated Master Plan”- evictions which have confronted by the Oromo nation from all walks of lives and have caused the deaths of over 2000 Oromos by the federal government sniper force Agazi- still continue. In the Month of February over 200 People have been displaced by the government and their lands have been taken.  Every day a number of people are detained all over Oromia and Amhara regional States and tortured.

Today, over ten million Ethiopians are daily exposed to hunger and poverty while the Ethiopian government has invested billions of dollars of foreign aid in training killing squads to kill its own people, claiming that Ethiopians were not dying from hunger and poverty.

A call on International Communities:

  • The HRLHA once again renews its calls to the international community to act collectively in a timely and decisive manner to request the Ethiopian government to stop instigating war among the Nations and nationalities in Ethiopia, a situation that could easily lead to civil war.
  • The HRLHA further requests that members of the UN Human Rights Council urge the Ethiopian government to allow the UN Human Rights Special Rapporteurs to visit the country to assess the human rights situations of political prisoners and others in detention centers all over the country
  • The HRLHA calls upon major donor governments, including the USA, UK, Canada, Sweden, Norway and Australia to make sure that their aid money is not used to train the Ethiopian Government’s killing squads to dehumanize the citizens of Ethiopia

Copied To:

  • UN Human Rights Council
    OHCHR address: 
    Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)
    Palais Wilson
    52 rue des Pâquis
    CH-1201 Geneva, Switzerland.
  • Africa Union (AU)
    African Union Headquarters
    P.O. Box 3243 | Roosevelt Street (Old Airport Area) | W21K19 | Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
    Tel: (251) 11 551 77 00 | Fax: (251) 11 551 78 44
    Webmaster: webmaster@africa-union.org
  • The US Department of State
    WASHINGTON, D.C. HEADQUARTERS
    (202) 895-3500
    OFMInfo@state.gov
    Office of Foreign Missions
    2201 C Street NW
    Room 2236
    Washington, D.C. 20520
    Customer Service Center
    3507 International Place NW
    Washington, D.C. 20522-3303

 

Why the Eerie Silence of The Peoples of Ethiopia As State Terrorism Mainly Rampages Oromia? February 20, 2017

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Why the Eerie Silence of The Peoples of Ethiopia As State Terrorism Mainly Rampages Oromia?   

  


‘Unite to Defend Your Rights, Or Else, You’ll Cease to Exist’


By Denboba Natie, Sidama Info Network,   February 20, 2017, 

“Injustice Anywhere Is A Threat To Justice Everywhere. We Are Caught In An Inescapable Network Of Mutuality, Tied In A Single Garment Of Destiny. Whatever Affects One Directly, Affects All Indirectly.” Martin Luther King Jr. “Letter from Birmingham Jail”, 16 April 1963, USA


  1. The TPLF Never Quashes the Oromo Revolution.

The Oromo nation’s new waves of struggle against the ongoing oppression began in October 2015, is continuing unabated; despite the imposition of state of emergency by TPLF’s ruthless regime since October 2016. Several hundreds of Oromo civilians have been summarily executed on monthly basis ever since; and to date hundreds are getting slaughtered by TPLF’s terrorizing agents known as ‘Agi-azi’, in addition to Ogaden Sumali Liyu militia, the national army and security forces. Additionally, hundreds of thousands of Oromo civilians are rounded up and taken to various torturing chambers all over the country; where the prisons of the country mainly entertain Oromo prisoners – to the extent where people assume that the language of all prisons in Ethiopia became Affan Oromo. The Oromo’s prominent opposition figures such as Baqala Garbaa and Professor Marara Gudina among hundreds of thousands of Oromo prisoners remain unlawfully incarcerated. Therefore, the Oromo’s current revolution is the outcome of over century old grievances resulted from deep-seated injustice imposed on the nation by successive Ethiopian rulers including the current TPLF’s ruthless regime.

Therefore, the aim of the Oromo nation’s new form of struggle is not about demanding the regime to answer their mysterious, unrealistic and alien quests. To the contrary, the Oromo nation unanimously rose to unconditionally demand its Waqaa, Allah, Magano, Yahweh, Egiziabher (God-given) unalienable rights to decent life, liberty, freedom of choice and self-determination, the pursuit of happiness and dignity; all denied to the nation by this regime for the last 26 years. The Oromo nation as the rest nations and peoples of Ethiopia is demanding ‘Nothing More, Nothing Less’.

Furthermore, the Oromo nation as the rest peoples of Ethiopian is demanding the current TPLF’s terrorist regime to stop the ongoing exploitation of their vast resources and economy, displacements of millions of Oromo peasants from their ancestral lands and livelihood (to vacate it for TPLF’s military commanders and its collaborators to trade with it under the pretext of elusive investment and fake development). The Oromo is demanding its denied rights to be unconditionally restored.

Sadly, the response of TPLF’s ruthless regime to date remain live bullet and mass incarceration of hundreds of thousands of Oromo civilians where inhumane treatments in various prisons is extreme. To make the situation worst, the current deployment of Ogaden Liyu militia (Agi’Azi within it) to massacre the Oromo people from East to South Ogaden neighboring areas is demonstrating the virulent nature of TPLF’s brutal regime to the Oromo nation in particular, to the rest peoples and nations of Ethiopia in general. Lessons the peoples of Ethiopia have learnt thus far are evident that this regime never respect its own constitution which vehemently denounces (at least on paper) its harrowing actions to unarmed civilians. Wholly disregarding its constitution, the regime remains responding all quests of the Oromo, Ogaden Sumali, Sidama, Amhara, Konso, Gambella, Benshangul and the rest peoples and nations of Ethiopia with live bullet and unprecedented level of brutality since it has assumed power in May 1991.

  1. The West and Their Hypocrisy

Overwhelmingly occupied with jungle mentality of over four decades, to date the TPLF’s architects resorted to responding to any peaceful quests of the subjects with brutality and cruelty of unheard proportion in Empire’s history. The military commanders of the TPLF, blatantly terrorize unarmed civilians in front of the oblivious Western diplomats whose mouths remain zipped when vested interests’ posse eerie silence. Whilst the said oblivious diplomats watching in front of their noses, the TPLF’s killing machines who are mainly trained and equipped with modern snipers by the USA, France, the UK and some other EU countries military and security personnel, summarily execute the unarmed Oromo, Ogadenia, Amhara, Gambella, Konso, Sidama and the rest peoples of various nations. Obliviously, regardless, they pore aid money to date. To have such confidence in executing unarmed civilians and mass arresting tens of thousands of civilians, the TPLF’s politicians often receive tacit agreement from their surreptitiously watching Western sponsors who always pay deaf ears and blind eyes to the suffering of the majority of stakeholders.

West’s politicians, particularly during the era of Tony Blair’s Premiership, when once TPLF’s late leader PM Meles Zenawi, was regarded as their darling; the West has tacitly given him outright authority to do whatever he wishes on his subjects as long he runs their agenda in the horn. This has been obliviously reinforced by the repeated visits of the USA’s, Germany’s and UK’s leaders and high level officials including last year’s visit of the USA’s former president, Barak Obama. Their Medias remain as oblivious as their politicians, whilst wasting their time talking about the ailing Robert Mugabe, instead.

Due to the above geopolitical interests of the West and concomitant silence in the face of unfolding executions, the TPLF ruthless regime became bold, callously, blunt, confident, unrepentant and stubbornly determined to assure the subservience of the majority to its barbaric rule. Particularly, with this end, it is the Oromo nation to be mainly focused upon, the Amhara standing the second in the queue. The ultimate reasons why the Tigrean regime is focusing on brutalizing the Oromo nation is twofold. The first is the Oromo’s economic importance for its plan of exponentially increasing the capacity of their domestic and international bank accounts. Those, TPLF’s military commanders, once who were penniless when they occupied Finfinnee (Addis Ababa), over quarter of a century ago, now become multimillionaires by looting, primarily the wealth of the Oromo nation as the region has got vast resources including immense minerals and abundant cash crops; as Oromia remains their primary cash cow. The second reason is the Oromo’s being major single entity in Ethiopia. Hence, unless the regime, divides and silences the Oromo nation and the second largest nation of Ethiopia, the Amhara, TPLF knows that its survival will be at stake. Cognizant of this, the regime leaves no stone unturned to humiliate and silence the Oromo nation primarily and the Amhara secondly.

III. TPLF’s Erroneous Belief That the Smouldering Fire Has Been Extinguished.

It’s imperative that TPLF believes that, it has accomplished its tasks after the imposition of state of emergency. Gullible belief, as far as the situations in Oromia and Amhara regions are concerned. The fire is steadily Smouldering. The same is true in all regions. Moreover, TPLF particularly believes that its infamous quislings have silenced the 4th and 5th largest nations of the county, the Sidama and Ogaden Sumali. In the cases of both Sidama and Ogadenia, this is the case simply because it uses notorious cadres of the country known for their barbaric actions against their own people whilst implementing TPLF’s agenda in their respective regions although in Ogaden, the ONLF is fiercely fighting the enslaving regime. The hideous personalities include, the infamous ‘Shiferaw Shigute’ who has worked hard to humiliate the Sidama nation time and again whilst facilitating, and committed crimes against the Sidama people in addition to his major roles in displacing tens of thousands of Sidama peasants from their ancestral lands by leaving them destitute. Abdi Mohammed Omar of the Ogaden Sumali (regional puppet president), who is known for his viciousness and blood thirsty nature as his Sidama counterpart, is responsible for the death and incarceration of tens of thousands of Sumali civilians. This is the wicked puppet who is overseeing the official commanding aspect of Ogaden Liyu militia under the watchful eyes of TPLF’s generals, whilst implementing the current massacre of the Oromo civilians from east to south east. The two notorious cadres known for their both barbarism and moronic nature, are instrumental in dehumanizing their own peoples and beyond. Besides, the Smouldering fire in Oromia and beyond won’t be extinguished until it successfully achieves its objectives.

  1. Is the Division of Oromo Diaspora Playing Against the Oromo’s Interests? 

If a herd of buffalo remain united creating fence like defense, stands its grounds and doesn’t run away from its predators, none of them could be easily devoured. However, once a herd loses its ground, frightened, panicked and start to run away, natural separation occurs -thereby become an easy prey. We human beings are not different. If we are united and defy any oppression, no oppressor on planet will be able to enslave his/her subjects. Nowhere on planet, oppression has been successful unless the subjects are divided, manipulated and mentally defeated to allow themselves to be enslaved. This has been the case during the era of European colonization of Africa and the rest parts of the world; and it is the case as we speak all over the world. This has been the case in human history since mankind began a socially organized life. Yet, failing to assert such simple analogues, we fail time and again. We make the same mistakes repeatedly. This can be the case, when we are less aware of or our ego overrides the needs of our downtrodden groups of society for whom we may claim, are ready to sacrifice our lives, whilst quashing their dream as we continue bickering on little issues.

Finally, I dare to be bold (although I might be told it’s none of my business), on the fact that, the division and subdivision of Oromo Diaspora and opposition groups for minor issue is playing to the advantage of the TPLF’s ruthless regime. The division of the Oromo Diaspora is allowing to the regime to buy time. The Oromo players must stop, rethink and act quickly to save the situation before it gets out of control, thereby, elongate the suffering of the Oromo people those who are paying ultimate sacrifices with their precious lives day and night. If we remain as stubborn as we seem now, let all of us not forget that we’re committing inexcusable historical error. Humbly, I remotely believe that any Oromo wants this to be the case. Therefore, it’s now, the right time to act.

 

  1. The Silence of The Sidama Nation Must Come to An End!

The relationship of Oromo and Sidama nations is much deeper than mere solidarity, one might entertain as a temporary show case only benefiting politico-diplomatic gesture. Both Kush brothers share deeper unity in several ways. Their view of the world around them and beyond, their perception of justice and equality as well as governance under egalitarian systems ‘Gadaa and Luwa’, their religious belief are of similar nature, not only they are of similar stock. The Sidama and the Oromo nation share numerous attributes- not exhaustively such as cultural and psychological as well as socio-economic. Their being are closely intertwined in such a manner that, sometimes becomes indistinguishable. If one studies the Arusi and Bale Oromo and traditional Sidama society, their stark similarities are unprecedented.

Moreover, Oromo and Sidama nations’ resistance movements predate the creation of the current barbaric incumbent, TPLF. Since Hailesilassie and prior to the latter, including during the Abyssinian king, Menelik II, Oromo and Sidama nation have shared both bad and good times together. They have been in quest for their liberty and freedom taken away from them together. Both nation are the victims of the current injustice. Whilst the Tigreans were part and parcels of the subjugating empire, the solidarity of the Sidama and Oromo has been there. Therefore, at this critical moment in the history of the Oromo nation, while its sons and daughters are gunned-down in broad day lights by Tigrean barbaric regime; to me as a principled Sidama man, the current uncustomary silence of the nation is extremely unsettling. Thus, I urge the Sidama nation to rise and walk shoulder to shoulder with its Oromo brothers and sisters. The propaganda of the regime conveyed and enforced through notorious ‘Shiferaw Shigute’ network, evidently, so far has confused the Sidama nation. Such deceitful propaganda should be critically considered and scrutinized to be eventually regurgitated. There is no excuse, for the current silence, thus I reiterate that, the Sidama must stand with its Oromo cousins and disallow its land from being used by the TPLF’s brutal regime, to incarcerate and torture Oromo brothers and sisters, old and young alike.

  1. The Unity of All Peoples of Ethiopia Is Paramount to Dismantle Brutal TPLF.

Having a meticulously planned objective; using violence, assassination, massacres, land confiscation and expropriation of the entire wealth of the country, for the last 26 years, the TPLF’s regime has demonstrated its virulence to all peoples of the country. Not only to the other peoples, it has also shown its hideous nature to its own people to achieve its objectives. A good example could be drawn from its barbaric action when it has masterminded the massacre in ‘Hawzen’ market place where hundreds of Tigray civilians have been mercilessly bombed by the fighter jet coordinated by TPLF. Its action was planned to blame on its predecessors to gain international sympathy. Therefore, the TPLF’s regime has time again shown its barbarism and viciousness to all peoples of the country. The solution, thus is needing a strategic unity, maintaining differences as they are, until we get rid of this ruthless regime. The current revolution started by gallant Oromo nation is serving as a vehicle to achieve such objectives, thus shouldn’t be aborted by the brutal crackdown on a peaceful and purpose-driven Oromo youth and the entire nation.

All peoples of Ethiopia need to synchronize their struggle, temporarily leaving their petty differences aside, until this bestial regime is brought down to its knees. We must, rethink our actions before we rush into entertaining petty differences whilst men and women, youth and old citizens are gunned-down in broad day light in all parts of the country. None of us can afford continuing in such heartless and soulless manner; if we genuinely aspire the emaciation of our nations and peoples from over a quarter of a century subjugation and brutality of unprecedented scale. The time is today. Let’s move with strategic togetherness before it’s too late.

 

Denboba Natie, (my opinion not of my political party or alliance)

February 20, 2017


 

IHS Jane’s Country Risk Daily Report: War Crimes: Crimes Against Humanity: The genocide against Oromo people involving Ethiopia’s Somali region police (Liyu Police), a segment of fascist TPLF’s Agazi forces February 18, 2017

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Fascist TPLF Ethiopia’s federal defence army,  Abbay Tsehaye & Samora Yunus are architects of the ongoing genocidal ethnic cleansing against Oromo people in South and Eastern Oromia. 

Oromia violence involving Ethiopia’s Somali region police

IHS Jane’s Country Risk Daily Report, 17 February 2017

EVENT

Several members of Ethiopia’s Somali region’s Liyu special police were reportedly killed by armed locals on 14 February in Gursum district, Oromia region, allegedly in response to recent raids into the area by these security forces, according to Ethiopian opposition media. Locals also seized unspecified amounts of police ammunition and weapons during the violence.

Earlier in February, both an Oromia government official and an Oromo opposition party had claimed Somali regional police involvement in recent cattle raids, looting, and killings in Oromia’s East Haraghe (which includes Gursum), Bale, Guji, and Borena zones.

Complicity by the Ethiopian government, dominated by its Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) wing, in these raids would most likely be part of a strategy designed to prevent the formation of a cross-ethnic domestic opposition and marginalise the ethnic-Oromo opposition ahead of the scheduled end of the state of emergency in April.


About Jane’s

Jane’s Defence Weekly (abbreviated as JDW) is a weekly magazine reporting on military and corporate affairs, edited by Peter Felstead. It is one of a number of military-related publications named after John F. T. Jane, an Englishman who first published Jane’s All the World’s Fighting Ships in 1898. It is a unit of Jane’s Information Group, which was purchased by IHS in 2007. The magazine has a large circulation and is frequently cited in publications worldwide

Human Rights League of Horn of Africa: The United Nations Human Rights Council: Human rights situations that require the Council’s attention: ETHIOPIAN GOVERNMENT CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY IN OROMIA ESCALATE AFTER THE STATE OF EMERGENCY IS DECLARED February 15, 2017

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Human rights situations that require the Council’s attention

 

Human Rights League of Horn of Africa

(HRLHA)

Written Statement Submitted to United Nations Human Rights Council,

34th Session, 27 February – 24 March, 2017

Item 4: Human rights situations that require the Council’s attention

(Country- Ethiopia)

Geneva, 12 February, 2017

ETHIOPIA:

ETHIOPIAN GOVERNMENT CRIMES AGAINST HUMANITY IN OROMIA ESCALATE AFTER THE STATE OF EMERGENCY IS DECLARED

oromo-protests-against-tplf-fascsit-ethiopian-regimme-tyranny

ETHIOPIA:

How Many Should die Before the Internatioanl Community intervenes to save lives?

                    HRLHA  Calls for  Intervention by the international community

to end Human Tragedy in Ethiopia


1. The Ethiopian government has targeted the Oromo people in general and the youth in particular, since the 2005 beginning of the mass, but the peaceful uprising of the Oromo people led by Orom students demanding their freedom and the halt of systematic violations of their fundamental rights. The response from the government to the legitimate and peaceful demands of the people] was massive arrests, torture, disappearances and summary executions of the civilian population. However, the heavy hand of the government forces didn’t stop the demands of the Oromo people and the protest has continued for over ten years. From November 2015, the mass movement- in which Oromos from all walks of life have participated- has continued on a daily basis until the government declared a State of Emergency on October 8, 2016.<

The government also targeted prominent political leaders of Oromo parties that are registered and functioning peacefully in Ethiopia. Deputy Chairman of the Oromo Federalist Congress – OFC, Mr. Bekele Gerba- has been in jail for some years now, with his case still pending in the court of justice under the pretext that the prosecutor is unable to gather witnesses to testify against the accused. The number of Oromo political prisoners has reached an unbearable level and so disproportionate that, using the words of one senior government official who spend few years in prison, “Afaan Oromo (the language of the Oromos) has now become the official language of Ethiopian prisons”.

2. Ethiopian prisons, as far as the rights of the political prisoners to a reasonable space/room for sleeping, access to daylights, to proper sanitation, to family visits and meeting with their respective lawyers is concerned, are that they are among the worst correctional facilities in the world. The level of torture, as reported by the families who were granted rare visits, is unbearable. The government continues to deny access to international organizations, the UN Human Rights Special Rapporteurs and the ICRC, whose report could have shed more light on the situations in the prisons.

3. The Ethiopian government boldly demonstrated its dedication to continue violating the fundamental human rights of its citizens, when it arrested Dr. Merera Guddina, chairman of the Oromo Federalist Congress – OFC, on November 30, 2016 upon his return to Ethiopia after briefing the European Union officials on the situation in Ethiopia. The arrest, according to the government, was justified because of an alleged meeting of Dr. Merera with the other opposition leader, Prof. Berhanu Nega, chairman of the outlawed political party, Ginbot – 7 (a.k.a G7). Dr. Merera Guddina and Professor Berhanu Nega, the G7 Leaders, had been invited by the EU parliament to Brussels to attend an EU organized Conference on the Ethiopian current political crisis. According to reliable sources, Dr. Merera Gudina was taken to the infamous Maikelawi interrogation center, with the other two of his friends, Taye Negera and Kumala, both of whom were in his house during the arrest.

4. The peacful protests that have rocked Ethiopia over one year (November 2015- October 2016) led by “Qeerroo Bilissummaa” literally, youth for freedom against subjugation, dramatically changed the peaceful protests into violence after the tyrannical government mercilessly massacred over 700 Oromos, from the ground and the air, at the Irrecha Festival, Oromo Thanksgiving Day on October 2, 2016. This dramatically changed the peaceful protests into violent ones all over the country.

UNPO: Oromo: Political Conviction Endures, while Communities Refuse to be Stifled February 14, 2017

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Oromo: Political Conviction Endures, while Communities Refuse to be Stifled

Photo courtesy of Minasse Wondimu Hailu/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Despite punitive suppression, Oromo people continue to gather in protest of the state of affairs in Ethiopia. Through the current state of emergency, the government is attempting to solidify central power and quash opposition groups, which results in the heightened marginalisation of already-disadvantaged communities. Voices in these communities express distrust in small democratic concessions, and call instead for a total overhaul of the political system to ensure inclusivity. With no opportunities for opposition to engage politically, and with the often-violent suppression of peaceful protests, the options for the Oromo are severely limited. For now, legitimate grievances fuel continued unrest, and the ruling party coalition maintains a chokehold on every pathway to power.

 

The article below was published by The Guardian:

In a muted show of defiance near Ethiopia’s capital city, a tall farmer glanced around before furtively crossing his arms below his waist to make the Oromo people’s resistance symbol.

Ethiopia’s government outlawed the gesture made famous by Olympic men’s marathon silver medalist Feyisa Lilesa – who formed the “X” above his head at last year’s Rio games – when it enacted a draconian state of emergency in October in an attempt to stem 11 months of protests. Although that decree has suppressed unrest, the farmer thinks demonstrations will start anew.

“The solution is the government has to come with true democracy. The people are waiting until the state of emergency is over and then people are ready to begin to protest,” he said.

While the emergency has led to at least 25,000 people being detained, security forces aren’t visible on roads flanked by fields with workers wielding curved sickles to harvest crops. Beyond that seeming normality, there is pervasive discontent with authorities accused of responding to claims of ethnic marginalisation by intensifying repression.

“The protests will come again because the government is not responding to the demands of the people in the right way,” said another young Oromo man in Ejere town. Like others, he answered via a translator in the Oromo language, and asked for his views to be kept anonymous.

Farmers in the restive West Shewa district of Oromia dismissed the political response so far, which has amounted to replacing regional leaders. Despite positive noises from the new Oromia president, many seek a wholesale change of government. “People need new faces and a new system,” the Ejere man said.

The problem for activists is how to translate popular anger stemming from grievances into political change. The security apparatus has shown it can quell protests and a de facto one-party state offers few opportunities for opposition activities.

Longstanding complaints by the Oromo about state exploitation coalesced around opposition to a metropolitan development plan in November 2015. In January the government suspended the blueprint for the integrated development of Addis Ababa with surrounding Oromo areas, but that didn’t stem the revolt. Some demonstrations were peaceful; others involved torching investments and government offices. Security forces gunned down as many as 600 protesters, according to the Association for Human Rights in Ethiopia.

Now the demands are less policy-oriented due to outrage over repression. Allegations of ethnic bias are prevalent, though it is Oromo officials who are culpable for local failings. The claims centre on a view that the Tigrayan ethnic group benefit disproportionately from a system said to be controlled by the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), which founded a coalition that has ruled the country since 1991. Activists, many of whom are based abroad, also allege that Ethiopia’s territorial expansion in the late 19th century dispossessed Oromo, who at roughly 35 million people-strong nonetheless remain Ethiopia’s largest community.

Under a multinational federal system introduced in 1995, the Oromo group runs its own region, but people complain the resource-rich state is economically exploited, and their leaders subservient to the TPLF in the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). “There’s an Oromo saying: what the husband says, the wife cannot change,” said another opponent apropos of the political dynamic.

Land, which is state-owned in Ethiopia, is a particularly emotive issue. An aggressive, government-driven approach to development, combined with corrupt officials and investors, led to Oromo families losing farmland without receiving adequate compensation over the past two decades, particularly on the sought-after fringes of the capital.

Around Guder town, 80 miles (130km) west of Addis Ababa, farmers believe Oromo officials enriched themselves by selling plots on the edge of town to developers and using the proceeds to build houses near the capital. One man interviewed can’t give a specific example of an unfair eviction near Guder, but he’s worried about the trend. “People have a fear about what happened in the Addis Ababa area,” he said.

Other common concerns are mundane, and acknowledged as legitimate by officials: people want an improved road, or better supplies of water and electricity. Despite evident progress, Ethiopia, where the population of close to 100 million is Africa’s second largest, still lies 174th out of 188 countries on the UN’s 2015 human development index, below South Sudan and Afghanistan.

The evolving and multi-layered grievances are an acute test for the government, as well as a conundrum for major donors, such as the UK’s Department for International Development, which remains silent on the EPRDF’s repression as it lauds its development record. While efforts to improve public services, create jobs and reduce corruption may make headway, there’s little chance of the desired systemic reform.

That was reinforced by the arrest in November of Merera Gudina, the most high-profile Oromo opposition leader not in jail or abroad. He was accused of breaking emergency rules by communicating with a banned nationalist opposition leader at a European parliament hearing in Brussels.

Across West Shewa, locals said there had not yet been any changes in community leaders and the government hadn’t reached out to discuss the problems with them. Some said they were no longer interested in what officials had to say.

In Addis Ababa, the federal communications minister, Negeri Lencho, an Oromo professor of journalism, offers a different view. “The change belongs to the people. The reform belongs to the people. The reform includes increasing awareness of people to defend their interests,” he said.

Despite this gulf between officials and public, serious dialogue is unlikely, according to Zelalem Kibret, an Ethiopian blogger who was arrested in 2014 and is currently a visiting scholar at the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice at New York University.

“The government will not go for any type of concession while the opposing force is weak. The activists also seem unwilling, since they are aimed at ousting the regime. I think the brutality that was unleashed by the regime for the last 12 months pushed every moderate voice to the fringe,” he said.

If the movement were to opt for incremental gains through the ballot box, opposition parties would have to compete in local elections scheduled for 2018, but that presents formidable political and logistical obstacles. As well as holding all seats in the federal parliament and regional chambers, the four-party EPRDF and allied organisations occupy all of up to 100 seats on each one of more than 18,000 village councils, and also on roughly 750 larger administrations, said Zelalem. With opposition leaders and activists exiled, imprisoned, or fearing arrest, already weak parties are in no shape to loosen the coalition’s hold.

“The EPRDF is still the only strong political force in Ethiopia. I doubt the protesters have any solid bargaining power other than sporadic demonstrations that are likely to be quashed easily. It is an impasse. Most probably the regime will stay in power for many years,” Zelalem said.

The Guardian : How long can Ethiopia’s state of emergency keep the lid on anger? February 12, 2017

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A state crackdown has silenced ethnic Oromo people in Ethiopia, but grievances over land and rights, and a lack of political options, could reignite protests

Oromo people stage a protest against the government near the Hora Lake at Debre Zeyit
Oromo people stage a protest against the government near the Hora Lake at Bishoftuu ( Debre Zeyit). Photograph: Minasse Wondimu Hailu/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

In a muted show of defiance near Ethiopia’s capital city, a tall farmer glanced around before furtively crossing his arms below his waist to make the Oromo people’s resistance symbol.

Ethiopia’s government outlawed the gesture made famous by Olympic men’s marathon silver medalist Feyisa Lilesa – who formed the “X” above his head at last year’s Rio games – when it enacted a draconian state of emergency in Octoberin an attempt to stem 11 months of protests. Although that decree has suppressed unrest, the farmer thinks demonstrations will start anew.

“The solution is the government has to come with true democracy. The people are waiting until the state of emergency is over and then people are ready to begin to protest,” he said.

While the emergency has led to at least 25,000 people being detained, security forces aren’t visible on roads flanked by fields with workers wielding curved sickles to harvest crops. Beyond that seeming normality, there is pervasive discontent with authorities accused of responding to claims of ethnic marginalisation by intensifying repression.

“The protests will come again because the government is not responding to the demands of the people in the right way,” said another young Oromo man in Ejere town. Like others, he answered via a translator in the Oromo language, and asked for his views to be kept anonymous.

Farmers in the restive West Shewa district of Oromia dismissed the political response so far, which has amounted to replacing regional leaders. Despite positive noises from the new Oromia president, many seek a wholesale change of government. “People need new faces and a new system,” the Ejere man said.

The problem for activists is how to translate popular anger stemming from grievances into political change. The security apparatus has shown it can quell protests and a de facto one-party state offers few opportunities for opposition activities.

Longstanding complaints by the Oromo about state exploitation coalesced around opposition to a metropolitan development plan in November 2015. In January the government suspended the blueprint Global Development – The Guardian African women form a united front in the battle for equality – podcast

Under a multinational federal system introduced in 1995, the Oromo group runs its own region, but people complain the resource-rich state is economically exploited, and their leaders subservient to the TPLF in the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). “There’s an Oromo saying: what the husband says, the wife cannot change,” said another opponent apropos of the political dynamic.

Land, which is state-owned in Ethiopia, is a particularly emotive issue. An aggressive, government-driven approach to development, combined with corrupt officials and investors, led to Oromo families losing farmland without receiving adequate compensation over the past two decades, particularly on the sought-after fringes of the capital.

Around Guder town, 80 miles (130km) west of Addis Ababa, farmers believe Oromo officials enriched themselves by selling plots on the edge of town to developers and using the proceeds to build houses near the capital. One man interviewed can’t give a specific example of an unfair eviction near Guder, but he’s worried about the trend. “People have a fear about what happened in the Addis Ababa area,” he said.

Other common concerns are mundane, and acknowledged as legitimate by officials: people want an improved road, or better supplies of water and electricity. Despite evident progress, Ethiopia, where the population of close to 100 million is Africa’s second largest, still lies 174th out of 188 countries on the UN’s 2015 human development index, below South Sudan and Afghanistan.

The evolving and multi-layered grievances are an acute test for the government, as well as a conundrum for major donors, such as the UK’s Department for International Development, which remains silent on the EPRDF’s repression as it lauds its development record. While efforts to improve public services, create jobs and reduce corruption may make headway, there’s little chance of the desired systemic reform.

That was reinforced by the arrest in November of Merera Gudina, the most high-profile Oromo opposition leader not in jail or abroad. He was accused of breaking emergency rules by communicating with a banned nationalist opposition leader at a European parliament hearing in Brussels.

Across West Shewa, locals said there had not yet been any changes in community leaders and the government hadn’t reached out to discuss the problems with them. Some said they were no longer interested in what officials had to say.

In Addis Ababa, the federal communications minister, Negeri Lencho, an Oromo professor of journalism, offers a different view. “The change belongs to the people. The reform belongs to the people. The reform includes increasing awareness of people to defend their interests,” he said.

Despite this gulf between officials and public, serious dialogue is unlikely, according to Zelalem Kibret, an Ethiopian blogger who was arrested in 2014 and is currently a visiting scholar at the Center for Human Rights and Global Justice at New York University.

“The government will not go for any type of concession while the opposing force is weak. The activists also seem unwilling, since they are aimed at ousting the regime. I think the brutality that was unleashed by the regime for the last 12 months pushed every moderate voice to the fringe,” he said.

If the movement were to opt for incremental gains through the ballot box, opposition parties would have to compete in local elections scheduled for 2018, but that presents formidable political and logistical obstacles. As well as holding all seats in the federal parliament and regional chambers, the four-party EPRDF and allied organisations occupy all of up to 100 seats on each one of more than 18,000 village councils, and also on roughly 750 larger administrations, said Zelalem. With opposition leaders and activists exiled, imprisoned, or fearing arrest, already weak parties are in no shape to loosen the coalition’s hold.

“The EPRDF is still the only strong political force in Ethiopia. I doubt the protesters have any solid bargaining power other than sporadic demonstrations that are likely to be quashed easily. It is an impasse. Most probably the regime will stay in power for many years,” Zelalem said.

Sidama National Liberation Front’s statement on the violence of TPLF in eastern/southern Oromia February 7, 2017

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Odaa OromooOromianEconomistNo To Fascist TPLF Ethiopia's genocidal militarism and mass killings in Oromia, Ethiopia

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The Ongoing Massacre of Oromo Civilians Never Resolve EPRDF/TPLF’s Inherent Malice!

Press Statement by Sidama National Liberation Front (SNLF)

February 2, 2017

Since capturing the state power a quarter of a century ago, the TPLF/EPRDF dictatorial regime has monopolized the political governance and embarked on a project of fear, dehumanization, depersonalization, exploitation of peoples’ lands and wealth for its benefit, and systematic enslavement of the citizens of the country. Often changing its color like Chameleons, TPLF/EPRDF has proved its expertise in cheating, deceiving, stealing and more importantly brutalizing its subjects at an unprecedented scale. The regime has maintained its grip on power with barrel of gun terrorizing its subjects day and night. During TPLF/EPRDF 26 years of tenure, it became clear that the grotesque nature of the regime is multilayered and deeper than any person can comprehend. When it wishes, it sows the seeds of hatred between two or three sisterly nations whose peoples have peacefully coexisted with deep-rooted spirit of fraternity and cooperation for centuries. At the same time, the regime pretends to intervene to appear to be a provider of peace for the conflict it has meticulously masterminded. When it wishes, it massacres civilians who demand their constitutional rights in the name of defending the constitution which it persistently violates. Massacre, executions and incarceration of civilians have become a daily routine for the oppressed nations under the TPLF’s brutal regime.

The TPLF/EPRDF regime remains in power by terrorizing the nations and peoples of the country it claims to govern. As we speak, it is terrorizing the citizens under the ‘State of Emergency’ with the intensity of cataclysmic proportion. The current State of Emergency began since October 2016. One of its key objectives is quelling the Oromo and Amhara revolutions that began in November 2015 in Oromia and July/August 2016 in Amhara region. The two largest nations of the country are demanding freedom, democracy and self-rule in their respective regions.

To quell the Oromo national demand, for the last three months, the regime embarked on deploying Ogaden Somali Liyu militia to kill Oromo civilians, on its behalf in the entire areas neighboring Oromia with Ogaden Somali. The Oromo people are massacred by TPLF armed and commanded ‘Ogadeni Liyu Militia’ day and night, from Borana Zone to Harar and beyond. It orchestrated and instigated such conflicts between the two down trodden sisterly nations to secure a breathing space from the intense Oromo struggle for freedom and emancipation. The Amhara struggle for the same cause is also putting the regime’s position in precarious situation. The aim of the brutal regime is to shatter the dream and aspirations of the Oromo nation and other oppressed nations by setting them up against one another employing a typical colonial divide and rule strategy copied from the West. Together with the likeminded oppressed nations and peoples, the Oromo nation will never surrender its fight to the last drop of blood. The Oromo nation as well as Ogadenia, Amhara, Sidama, Konso, Benshangul-Gumuz, and other oppressed nations of the country are determined to liberate themselves from the TPLF’s tyranny now than ever before. The popular demand couldn’t be easily silenced by the power of weapon and military might, and draconian State of Emergency laws that stifle basic human freedom.

Acting unlawfully, the regime has proved its vicious nature time and again. Impoverishing the target subjects and most of the regions, it has indescribably enriched its region and people, who are exponentially multiplying their wealth and assets day by day. The TPLF elites, who were penniless apart from rifles and ammunitions when they occupied Addis Ababa in May 1991; turned to multi-millionaires by expropriating the resources of Oromia, Sidama, Gambella, Benshangul, Amhara, Konso, Ogadenia and the rest of Ethiopians. In the past 26 years, tens of millions have been displaced from their lands to vacate it for Tigreans and TPLF’s business empires and for those whom the TPLF regime recruits from abroad under the pretext of international investment.

The regime has time and again shown its blatant disregard for a peaceful settlement of political differences. Instead it answers all constitutionally guaranteed demands for freedom with live bullets. In the past 16 month alone, the TPLF/EPRDF regime has executed over 1,700 Oromo civilians and unlawfully arrested over 170,000 who have demanded their constitutional rights in Oromia alone. The Amhara people are also similarity targeted as are in Ogaden, Konso, Sidama, Gambella, Benshangul and elsewhere in the country. Ethiopia is under an act of state terrorism! Under this regime, children and elderly, women and men alike have been increasingly subjected to ongoing massacre and state terrorism.

The ongoing massacre of the Oromo people by Ogaden Liyu Militia, armed and coordinated by TPLF generals behind the scene is deplorable, thus it must be unconditionally stopped. It is wholly loathsome for the regime that calls itself a government to play such barbaric games on human lives. The Oromo and Ogaden Somali nations fully understand the vicious attempts by the TPLF to divide and sow seeds of conflict between them, must foil this heinous plot and stand together in denouncing these criminal actions. We must show the regime that it can’t ‘divide and conquer us’ by standing shoulder to shoulder more than ever until we get rid of the barbaric regime. The ongoing massacre of the Oromo people in the entire militarized Oromia must be unconditionally stopped and the region must be immediately de-militarized. The Oromo and Ogadeni Somali nations must focus on targeting the regime which has denied them their dignity, identity and pride. The Ogandeni Liyu Militia are also urged to reject the TPLF and its sinister agenda of sowing seeds of belligerence between the two sisterly nations to prolong its rule.

Finally, the Sidama National Liberation Front calls up on all the oppressed nations and the entire peoples in Ethiopia, to stand in unison to denounce the TPLF fascism and forge a united front for freedom, democracy and genuine self-rule.

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UNPO: Oromo: Empowered Youth of Oromia Will No Longer Stay Silent February 5, 2017

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Oromo: Empowered Youth of Oromia Will No Longer Stay Silent

UNPO, 3 February 2017

 

Photo courtesy of UN photo/Eskinder Debebe


Mr Mohamed Ademo, editor of the OPride news platform, shares his perspective on the importance of the mobilization of Oromo youth, or the “Qubee generation”, as he prefers to call it. Over the past year, Olympic athlete Feyisa Lilesa has been an important example of this generation, but he does not stand alone. Members of the Qubee generation were the first able to study in their native language and therefore developed a strong and resilient sense of identity. In the context of the state of emergency which turned Ethiopia into “a violent, repressive surveillance society” over the course of 2016, it is important to support and enable this generation of young Oromos to keep faith in the face of repression.

The article below was published by the Diplomatic Courier:

Mohammed Ademo, an Ethiopian journalist and editor of the OPride news platform, had a difficult time choosing the 2016 Oromo Person of the Year. In fact, Ademo admits in his end-of-year essay that he originally planned to write about Olympic athlete Feyisa Lilesa’s courage, and how Feyisa’s protest at the Olympic Games made visible the oppression of Oromo people that the world didn’t yet know it ignored.

Feyisa made the year-end lists of changemakers at Foreign Policy, Deutsche Welle and Huffington Post, Ademo wrote. But the more the Washington-based journalist thought about it, the more he realized that Feyisa is emblematic of a more powerful cultural shift. Feyisa represents an entire generation of young Oromo in Ethiopia – the Qubee, who were the first Oromo permitted to learn in their native language and thus described by an alphabetical feature associated with Afaan Oromo.

Essentially, they’re Oromo millennials.

“The Qubee generation appears ready to fight on until, in the words of Oromo leader Bekele Gerba, either all Oromos are jailed, killed and exiled, or until everyone is free,” Ademo writes. Even as Bekele Gerba, Merera Gudina and others remain imprisoned, the youth represent inevitable change.

Yet that change is coming at a cost that should shame the Ethiopian government as it strangles its own future under a violent, repressive surveillance society – and shame international leaders for their complicity. Because the Oromo are Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group, numbering more than 35 million, and one that has historically felt marginalized and severely discriminated against by successive governments. The Ethiopian Peoples’ Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) has held power for decades and has awarded power to elites from the minority Tigrayan ethnic group.

Last month, Human Rights Watch (HRW) praised the release of 9,800 prisoners participating in anti-government protests, many of them in the Oromia region. But they remain less than half of the 24,000 people who have been detained since Ethiopia announced a state of emergency in October. That decision followed the Irreecha massacre, in which the Oromo Federalist Congress puts the death toll at nearly 700, a number wildly at odds with official counts of just 52. OFC leader Mualtu Gemechu says there were up to 70,000 people who had been detained in recent months, not necessarily all Oromo protesters.

Their youth is emphasized in the December HRW report, which describes the harrowing experience of a 16-year-old girl from Hararghe whose father was killed, her brothers imprisoned and other family members disabled. She was banned from school after the military found a protest song, one of many recorded by Oromo’s young generation, on her mobile phone.

The Ethiopian teen told HRW that security agents went through her community “arresting every young person they could find,” and she refuses to return until the violence stops and the Oromo are heard.

“Many other young people have told me the same thing,” writes Felix Horne, author of the HRW report.

To say “young Ethiopians” is almost redundant, because one third of the population is under 25 years old. In 2014, almost half of all Ethiopians – 45 percent – were less than 15 years old. So it’s not that a new generation of Oromo don’t know the history or the sacrifices made by their elders, especially those active in organized political resistance that’s designed specifically for them. The reality is that they know that history all too well, and in an era of connectivity and engagement, they demand a different future.

Ethiopia is, in theory, governed under autonomous regional authorities aligned with ethnicity and historical homelands, although in practice that governance and self-determination are rarely true for some groups, including the Oromo. Although they are the largest ethnic group, and along with the Amhara account for a 60 percent majority among Ethiopia’s 100 million people, both groups are ruled by a coalition that’s dominated by the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF).

Through the Tigray minority, that Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) coalition has retained power for decades that have seen Oromo excluded from opportunity in government, the economy and other avenues. Protests that began in November 2015 over land annexation in Addis Ababa, plans that would adversely affect Oromo interests, reflected decades of anger and frustration.

The leader of an Ethiopian Somali rebel group, Abdirahman Mahdi of Ogaden National Liberation Front, warned last May that tensions were about to boil over in the manner of the 2011 Arab Spring uprisings – and his assessment was accurate. Yet Ethiopian officials rarely pay more than lip service to promises of change.

This week, Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn again professed his support for “deep reforms” in government and society that he believes will be successful through public participation. His words are as hollow as those of Western leaders who profess their concern for Ethiopian human rights and the democratic process, while failing to insist that any reforms be implemented. That’s especially true of the United States and the need to protect an Ethiopian ally in combatting terrorism in the Horn of Africa.

While Hailemariam speaks of public engagement, the detentions continue and the disappearances remain unexplained. The trials and lengthy sentences of high-profile journalists, political activists and opposition leaders make more headlines. The draconian control of media and independent reporting has yet to see its well-deserved demise. Ethiopia’s promises are broken, but the world now sees the Oromo, whether through media outlets based in the diaspora like Ademo’s, or thanks to solidarity protests in Europe and America.

What Ethiopian officials must accept – and the world must ensure – is that in this young nation, this race toward freedom and equality is not a sprint but a marathon. Feyisa Lilesa understands this well, but he is not running alone. The Qubee generation runs behind and beyond him, and they will not be deterred.


 

Ethiopia in Crisis: What is going on now in Oromia is a massacre in the name of emergency, terrorising civilian populations January 31, 2017

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Odaa OromooOromianEconomistun-copyNo To Fascist TPLF Ethiopia's genocidal militarism and mass killings in Oromia, Ethiopia

 

Ethiopia in crisis, closes down news

By Ismail Einashe, sage Journals


oromo-people


ETHIOPIA HAS BEEN in lockdown for months. There has been a state of emergency declared and there is little news coming in and out of the country.  Social media and the internet have been outlawed, religious and cultural events banned, curfews imposed. Thousands of soldiers are roaming the streets.

It escalated after security services started killing people at the annual Irreechaa festival for the Oromos in Bishoftu in October 2016 This thanksgiving celebration of the Oromos is attended by millions from across Ethiopia and the diaspora. They wear traditional clothes and sing songs of resistance. As Ethiopia declares a state of emergency, Ismail Einashe explains some of the history to the current situation

For Oromos, Irreechaa is their most significant cultural event, and even though they are evenly split between Christians and Muslims, they all share ties to the original Oromo faith, Waaqefanna.

But at this year’s festival there was a stampede and attack by the Ethiopian police. The numbers killed are disputed – the government said 52 were killed, but activists from the Oromo Federalist Congress claim 678 people died.

And since pictures of the festival goers who were killed were published internationally, the state has shut down all access to the outside world. Behind the tragedy at Irreechaa is a long history of the Ethiopian state repressing Oromos, said Dr Awol Kassim Allo, an Ethiopian lecturer at the UK’s Keele University. “What is going on now in Oromia is a massacre in the name of emergency, terrorising civilian populations to force them into capitulation,” he said.

What is going on now in Oromia is a massacre in the name of emergency, terrorising civilian populations

He added: “The massacre at Irreechaa occurred before the state of emergency, although Ethiopia has always been under a state of emergency, the official declaration of emergency was a conclusive evidence that the state was losing control and that a large segment of the society has rejected the government’s authority to govern”.

Celebrating their traditions and wearing traditional dress, as the Oromos were doing at Irreechaa, has historically been part of the resistance to the government in Ethiopia, according to Mohammed Ademo, founder and editor of OPride.com, a multimedia news site focused on Ethiopia’s Oromo community, and now based in the USA.

Recently, many Oromos have begun to eschew Western attire completely and wear Oromo clothes. Oromo clothing has been more visible on the streets. This way of dressing is becoming a cornerstone of their identity and self- expression.

Traditional Oromo clothes consist of woya for men, which are toga-like robes, usually white, and a skirt called a wandabo for women. Oromo women also wear qollo and sadetta, cotton cloths traditionally hand-spun and hand-woven, and sometimes other garments are worn such as leather or animal skin robes.

On Facebook there are numerous groups now dedicated to dissecting the latest fashion styles of Oromo dress and there are popular style blogs that enjoy a huge following. Latest pop hits by Oromo artists heavily feature Oromo clothes – along with dances.

 

Peri Klemm, a professor in African history of art at the University of California at San Diego and expert on Oromo dress, said: “At times when identity is threatened, dress, particularly that of Oromo women who have always been the carriers of culture, becomes a way in which the Oromo maintain a sense of who they are.”


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Stop Genocide Against the Oromo People: The Whole of Oromia Must Act to Stop the Agazi and Liyu Police Terror in Hararge, Bale, Borana and Gujii January 27, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests.
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Odaa OromooOromianEconomist

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The Whole of Oromia Must Act to Stop the Agazi and Liyu Police Terror in Hararge, Bale, Borana and Gujii

 

It is well known that areas in eastern and southern Oromia are already hit by drought and weakened. The people are deprived of water and food by the government and there is no adequate humanitarian assistance in the region. Using this opportunity, the paramilitary forces of the fascist Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) regime, Agazi and Liyu Police, are deployed alongside the border of Oromia and Ogaden region committing massacres. In the past four weeks alone, the Liyu Police slaughtered more than 200 innocent Oromo people. These paramilitary forces are engaged in ethnic cleansing through armed attacks against unarmed Oromo civilians, women and children. The barbaric Agazi and Liyu Police are burning down villages, displacing thousands of people from their ancestral land, and carry out pillage in several districts of Oromia, for instance Qumbii, Cinaaksan, Gursum, Mayyuu Mulluqqee, Miidhagaa Lolaa, Odaa Diimaa, and Hara Funaanni. It is to be remembered that, since 2008, the Liyu Police have committed similar massacres in villages in Hararge province of eastern Oromia repeatedly. These are undertaken by the Somali regional state Liyu Police under the Tigrayan fascist regime’s direction and instruction. The Liyu Police has been committing attacks on civilians in several villages in Ogaden region itself. The TPLF, spearheaded by the Liyu Police, had already committed genocide in Ogaden region, which is well documented by international human rights groups, including Genocide Watch. Now, the TPLF has unleashed the abusive force on Oromia with the pretext of the state of emergency it declared to crash a peaceful protest.

Real Media Press: WHY IS ETHIOPIA’S SITUATION THE MOST UNDER-REPORTED CONFLICT IN THE WORLD? January 24, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests.
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Odaa OromooOromianEconomistun-copymass-arrest-of-students-underway-in-najo-west-wallaggaa-oromia-23rd-november-2016-oromoprotests-oromorevolution

WHY IS ETHIOPIA’S SITUATION THE MOST UNDER-REPORTED CONFLICT IN THE WORLD?


The situation in Ethiopia has been declared by some bloggers (see for instance Prof Chris Blattman) as the most under-reported conflict in the world right now. This is rather true. Though some media outlets reported on the recent political turmoil in Ethiopia, such as some German press in the context of the recent visit of Chancellor Merkel to Addis Ababa, generally very little has been reported on the unrest.

Already in November 2015, the first protests against the Ethiopian Government unfolded in the Oromia region when the government wanted to expand the margins of the city of Addis. As this implied the resettlement of the local Oromo population -the largest ethnic group in the country- this was seen as a further expression of political and economic marginalisation.

The situation calmed down a little over spring 2016 and erupted again in the summer when the Amhara people in the North started anti-government protests. The military was deployed and further unrest unfolded again in the Oromia region – and for the first time an alliance between the Oromo and the Amhara was built. Since November 2015, at least 500 people have been killed by security forces and tens of thousands have been arrested, according to Human Rights Watch. What started as a protest against the expansion of Addis turned into an expression of general dissatisfaction with the government’s authoritarianism and lack of political and economic participation for more than two and a half decades.

On 9th October, the Ethiopian Government declared the state of emergency for the first time in 25 years. This was after more than fifty people died at a religious festival of the Oromo people close to Addis. A week after, further details on the state of emergency were made public. Now, the government can arrest and detain for six months (the duration of the emergency state) any person breaching emergency laws and conduct searches without a court warrant. There are now severe restrictions to the freedom of assembly and protest, and any communication with foreign governments or foreign NGOs “that is likely to harm sovereignty, security, and constitutional order” (translation provided by Horn Affairs) as well as any communication with “anti-peace groups” is prohibited. Moreover, the Government can monitor and restrict “messages transmitted” through different sorts of media outlets. This is reflected in cutting off the internet via the mobile network for two months – a major internet access route in Ethiopia – as well as the similar disconnections for social media.

Shortly after declaring the state of emergency (on 15th October), the Ethiopian Government also announced reforms, including changes to the electoral system from ‘first past the post’ to a proportional system. A change of cabinet has already taken place and tackling corruption has been declared a priority.

So why are these developments in Ethiopia the most under-reported conflict of the world, to stay with the initial phrase?

To reiterate: Ethiopia is experiencing political unrest over an extended period of time and the state of emergency has been declared for the first time in 25 years. This should be reason enough to report on the situation, but there is more: Ethiopia has the second largest population in Africa with nearly 100million inhabitants, only topped by Nigeria. Secondly, Ethiopia’s GDP grew rapidly over the last few years at a rate of 9.6% in 2015. Thirdly, Ethiopia is considered as a bulwark against Jihadist Islamist movements in the Horn of Africa. Despite recently retreating some forces, Ethiopia has sent it troops to fight al-Shabab – the official al-Qaeda branch in Somalia.

These economic and security features of Ethiopia are at the same time a factor, if not the main reason why the West reports so little on the current political situation. Though the low coverage of Ethiopia is also related to the fact that other issues happen in the world and dominate Western media, the situation in Syria and Trump’s election to name a few. It is likely that Ethiopia’s importance to the West heavily contributed to the lack of coverage. Looking at the ever increasing Official Development Assistance (ODA) levels to Ethiopia by Western states, most notably the US and the UK, it seems as if the West buys into two arguments of the Ethiopian Government: political participation and democratic rights are less important than Ethiopia’s economic development and regional stability in the fight against terrorism. This is also reflected in the US and UK’s national focus on the ‘war on terror’ and their own balancing of national security in relation to human rights. A similar dynamic exists with regard to the World Banks and other donor priorities of poverty reduction over issues of political governance when they decide on Ethiopia’s ODA levels.

Though it has to be mentioned that the US, amongst others, expressed that they were ‘deeply concerned’ over the situation in Ethiopia, actions speak louder than words. It needs to be seen whether or not Western ODA levels continue to grow. And in the same manner, we should report on whether or not the Ethiopian Government will really deliver on its reform promises.

Ethiopia: War Crimes Against the Oromo Nation in Ethiopia January 23, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in Ethnic Cleansing, Human Rights.
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Odaa OromooOromianEconomist

Human rights League of the Horn of Africa

 

Ethiopia: War Crimes Against the  Oromo Nation in Ethiopia

HRLHA  Urgent Action  22nd January 2017


The Oromo nation is under severe coordinated internal  and external attacks  by TPLF/EPRDF- sponsored mechanized killing squads. In the past three months, since  the state of emergency was declared on October 8, 2016, the  Ethiopian TPLF/EPRDF  government  has  deployed  its killing squad Agazi force all over Oromia  and massacred over 1200 Oromo youths, mothers and fathers  in their homes and in the streets, imprisoned tens of thousands, committed rape, and disappeared other  thousands .  Over seventy thousand Oromos  from all walks of life have been arbitrarily detained- under the pre-text of rehabilitation (Tehadiso)- picked up from their homes, workplaces, streets and taken to concentration Camps of  Xolya, Huriso, Diddessa  and also to  unidentified concentration camps.  In these concentration camps, tens of thousands Oromos have suffered and died  from torture, communicable diseases, and malnutrition without receiving medical treatment.

The external attacks have been perpetuated against Oromos by TPLF/EPRDF trained special force (Liyu Police) from the Somali regional state in  the eastern  boundary. The Liyu Police is a special killing squad of the TPLF/EPRDF government in the Ogaden Region, a group  established in 2008 under the pretext of  protecting the people of the region  from the opposition political organization, the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) fighting for the self determination of Somali people in Ethiopia.

The Liyu police has routinely conducted heinous massacres in Ogaden villages ever since its formation and committed genocide against its own family members in the past eight years.

According to The Guardian, published  Thursday, 10 January 2013  , millions of pounds of Britain’s foreign aid budget were spent on training an Ethiopian paramilitary security force that stands accused of numerous human rights abuses and summary executions. The Guardian has  also mentioned in its news that  an internal Department for International Development document formed part of a tender to train security forces in the Somali region of Ogaden, as part of a five-year £13m–15m “peace-building” program has recently been discovered.

In its Urgent Action on May 2013 HRLHA reported that the Liyu Police had illegally  crossed into  Oromia in 2013 and attacked  the defenceless people; 700 different types of cattle and other valuable possessions were  reported to have been looted  and over 20,000  Oromos from Rasa Harre, Marfata, Qillee, Mulqee, Dirraa, Waldayyaa, Biqqoo and Libee community fled to the highland areas in Eastern Hararge Zone.

Since then, the TPLF/EPRDF- sponsored Liyu Police periodically has repeatedly attacked the neighboring Oromia districts in Bale, in Eastern Harge zones. The attack of the Liyu police  has escalated into invasions all over Oromia’s neighboring districts multiple times in the past one and half months.

According to the HRLHA informants,  this is the part of  internal and external  coordinated plan of TPLF /EPRDF government to  totally eliminate the Oromo nation  by using paramilitary Liyu Police. (synonym for Janjaweed militia which loosely translates to ‘devils on horseback’) . Janjaweed militia were group  of  killers deployed by Sudan government against the Darfur people in 2003 in which over 480,000 people were massacared and over 2.8 million have been displace)

Acording to the report we received  from our informants, overr 150  Oromos have been killed and many wounded during the war between  Liyu Police and the Oromo civilian in  Gursum, Qunbi, Babile, Chiksan, Gursum, and Jarso (Eastern Hararge),  Seweyena, Meda Welabu, Dawe Sarariti and Raytu (Bale Zone),  Liban and Laga Dawa (Guji Zone), Funanagrsu and Elele (Borana Zone) of Oromia.

The TPLF/EPRDF is committing war crimes against the Oromo nation  by deploying its highly trained killing squads from the internal Agazi Force  and by the external Liyu Police funded by foreign governments. The World Community should not remain silent and witness when such systematic war crimes are  taking place  against the Oromo Nation in Ethiopia, crimes that are similar to those committed in Rwanda and Darfur.

The TPLF government and the TPLF surrogate and the so- called Oromo  People’s Democratic Organization (OPDO) must be held accountable by the world community for their systematic war crimes against  the Oromos.

The 2003/2004 Genocide against Darfur in Sudan is a striking lesson; the people there were killed indiscriminately and, more sadly, the perpetrators would go unpunished until it culminated in a full genocide. What is happening in Oromia regional state today resembles more or less what happened at the embryonic stage of the Darfur genocide in Sudan.

Even the AU, whose headquarters is in the center of Oromia/Addis Ababa, remain actionless after thousands of Oromo children, seniors, men and women have been massacred by the TPLF/EPRDF killing squads in the past year. The donor governments such as the USA, the UK, Canada, Sweden, Norway, Australia  and government agencies (African Commission  on Human and Peoples’ Rights, EU Human Rights Commission and  UN Human Rights Council) have not found the courage to take concrete action, other than expressing  their concerns.  Such inaction doesn’t reflect the AU’s  and the UN’s obligation under their own Constitutive Act, which provides for intervention inside a member state against genocide, crimes against humanity, and war crimes.

This is a cosmopolitan ideal of protecting people inside states against mass atrocities as a matter of common obligation. The Responsibility to Protect (R2P), coined in 2001 under the leadership of the Canadian government and adopted by 150 heads of states and governments in 2005, obliges the international community to intervene to stop atrocities.

As a matter of principle, a state shoulders the primary responsibility to prevent and protect its own citizens against horrific acts, but if it is unable or unwilling to prevent and protect its population from genocide, war crimes, ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity, the responsibility is thus shifted to the international community. The R2P states, “ when a state is unable or unwilling to protect its population from genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing, the international community has the responsibility to intervene”.

The UN Charter’s first and most essential aim is to “maintain international peace and security”. However, when the UN was first created, it was an enormous undertaking based on hope.

Today, one critical question on everyone’s lips is whether the United Nations is living up to its mandate, more particularly, of maintaining international peace and security. Amid ongoing human rights crises in Ethiopia it is hard to figure out what exactly the UN & AU have done to uphold their responsibilities. Nevertheless, it is not too late to act today.  

Recommendation:

For the Ethiopian human rights crisis, two ways can be helpful in restoring peace and stability. In this, the international communities and agencies (AU, EU & UN) can play a decisive role:

  • Major donor governments, including the USA, the UK & Canada, Sweden, Norway and Australia should stop funding the authoritarian TPLF/EPRDF government
  • Put pressure on the TPLF/EPRDF government to allow neutral investigators to probe into the human rights crisis in the country as the precursor to international community intervention

The HRLHA therefore calls, yet again, upon the international community to act collectively in a timely and decisive manner – through the UN Security Council and in accordance with the UN charter on a case-by – case basis to stop the human tragedy in Oromia.

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Fascism: Genocide: TPLF Ethiopia: Prompting conflict among Neighboring Nations does not rescue the stumbling Fascist TPLF Ethiopia’s regime from defeat January 21, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Ethnic Cleansing, Genocide, The Tyranny of TPLF Ethiopia.
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Odaa OromooOromianEconomist

OMN: English News ( January 18, 2017)


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Prompting conflict among Neighboring Nations does not rescue the stumbling TPLF regime from defeat (OLF Statement)

Conflict

The Ethiopian empire was founded not based on the will of its nations and nationalities. It was formed by force by elites from the north with help of the European powers. Since its formation, Ethiopia has never respected the interests of other nationalities in the empire. Today, as in the past, the empire is serving only elites from the Tigray, particularly TPLF and members of its pseudo organizations, while majority of ordinary people from other nationalities, particularly the Oromos, are languishing under its tyranny. Subsequently, the economic, socio-cultural and political exploitations have continued unabated. Tired of such tyranny, the Oromo revolutionaries and the youth has stepped up an uprising that has engulfed the entire nation since 2014. Though the responses of the TPLF security forces were brutal, killing hundreds of peaceful protesters and detaining tens of thousands, the protest has continued and even expanded to the Amhara regional state and to the southern Nations and Nationalities regional state.

Desperate to control the people’s uprising, TPLF first declared a command post rule and then a state of emergency. However, neither of the command post nor the state of emergency has stopped the protest as TPLF hopes. Today, there is no political order in the country especially in Oromia and Amhara regional states. Failed to control the situation in the country, TPLF and its pseudo allies used various strategies to silence people’s quest for freedom and democracy. Since clinch on power, TPLF has been instigating a conflict along national and religion lines. Interestingly, after selfinstigating conflict using its undercover security agents, often it presents itself as a mediator while supporting one group with all sorts of logistics up to militarization. Subsequently, TPLF uses this self-instigated conflict as a propaganda on its statecontrol media to tell the people that TPLF is the best, perhaps the only, remedy for the state to continue as a nation. These are among the strategies that this minority group uses to stay on power. Contrary to this fact the TPLF and its dictatorial rule that are destroying the integrity of the country it claims to maintain.

In Oromia, there are countless instances where TPLF intentionally created a conflict between Oromos and other ethnic groups such as Somali. The current “Oromo -Somali conflict” in East and west Hararge, Bale, Borena and Guji zones seem unique in its nature from previous incidents. A well-trained special police forces (aka Liyu police) solely composed of ethnic Somalis are the fore front of the conflict. This conflict, perhaps a war, has been going on for now three weeks and hundreds of innocent Oromo people have been killed by this special police forces.

Although these special forces are composed of carefully selected ethnic Somalis, it is commanded by a TPLF general Abrhaa Qurater and is also enforced by TPLF Agazi Special Force. The Ethiopian government, as usual, is trying to divert this war as if it is just a conflict between Oromo and Somali farmers. Unlike previous conflicts, this is a large-scale war encompassing East and West Hararge, Bale, Borena and Gujii zones. It is also worth noting here that this Somali special forces are trained by Britain for a so called counter insurgency. The UK- and US-governments also finance the training and supported with all the logistics, which are now murdering innocent Oromo farmers in the East, south-east and southern Oromia bordering the Somali regional state. The TPLF government is using this special police forces, trained supposedly for counter insurgency, to raid just unarmed Oromo farmers. It not a simple conflict to ransack cattle and camels, as TPLF tried to present, however, it a war of ethnic cleansing by a well-trained police forces. Not only those directly involved in the war but also those who trained and armed them will be responsible for such atrocity on hundreds of innocent people.

Our people are fighting back with what they have, but one should note that these are a well-trained and armed forces. Thus, they need support from all Oromos in Oromia and across the globe. This is the time that we standup for the right cause, and show our support for those in dire need, putting aside our little differences. Thus, we call upon all Oromo in Oromia and in diaspora to stand with those who are facing the TPLF special forces with bare hand. The only ever lasting solution we have at stake now is to remove TPLF from power for once and for all. This is possible only when we all united and act as one people for one goal, remove TPLF, the killer of our people. We also call upon all Oromos who are currently serving at various posts in police and military camps of the TPLF to turn their weapons against the enemy of your people.

Those who supported the TPLF killing machinery financially as well as in logistics will not escape from accountability. Thus, we call upon the Western governments, specially the government of USA and UK who financially sponsored the training of such killing machinery should immediately withdraw their support and held the TPLF government accountable for all the killings and destruction. Finally, we would like to call upon all people in Ethiopian to stand together to bring an end to the TPLF tyranny.

Victory to the Oromo people!
Oromo Liberation Front
January 21, 2017

Read more in Amharic,  Afaan Oromoo and English


Related videos and articles:-

 

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Gaaddisa RAABAA DOORII (LIVE) Amajjii 17, 2017, Qabxiin Marii: Weerara Liyyuu Poolisii Oromoo Irratti Bane.

OMN: ODUU (Amajjii 18,2017)

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Abdi Illey’s recent attacks on Oromian territories with TPLF Generals

 

(Ayyaantuu News):There has been frequent, but in fact subsequent, attacks launched by what is called the Liyu Police Force of the Somali Regional State on different districts of Oromia along the South, South east and east particularly along the Hararghe, Bale and Borana lowlands. More than 200 people are estimated to have been killed so far. The Liyu Police, as commanded by the psychopath Abdi Illey did repeatedly commit war crimes and crimes against humanity on civilians in the Ogaden region. Most of the units of the Liyu police are said to have been recruited from Illey’s own clan. After he established the murderous militia group and took the command and control of it, Mr. Illey has literally turned himself into a war lord. He never gives sh* about what the officials at the federal gov’t had to say. It’s even with in the public domain that he spitted on the face of the puppet prime minister HMD in Jigjiga while he was there as a ‘guest of honor’ during the celebration day of what they call “nations and nationalities day” in 2013. While even most of the cabinet ministers of the federal government go on the routine per diem scales on trips to foreign countries, Abdi Illy makes it so differently. The man even contracts and commissions top security guards while reserving hotel rooms in some of the top hotels of the cities he goes for trip to.

2/3: “Liyu police” is an equivalent of the Janjaweed militia in the Sudan (Arabic: جنجويد) but armed by the TPLF to raid districts in Oromia

In this short commentary, I argue that Abdi Illey’s recent attack on the Oromo territories is part of his strategy to “take back” the land he lost during the backdoor deal with the TPLF Generals.
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The land dispute with Afar Regional State
It has been a matter of generic knowledge among the public that the Afar-Issa-Somali conflict over land was the cause for the dismissal for three-fourth of government cabinet members in the Somali regional State a couple of years back. At the heart of the conflict lies, as the Afar diaspora network claims, the Somali-Issa militia forces did expand their control into the heart of the Afar land reaching to the banks of the Awash River and the strategic highway linking Addis Ababa to the port cities of Assab and Djibouti. Apparently, the dispute was halted by TPLF’s interventionist deal that favored the position of the Afar. But insider informants had it that the TPLF-imposed decision to seal the deal favoring the position of the Afar asymmetrically divided the 12-membered cabinet of the Somali Regional State into a fiercely fighting group of 4 to 8 members. Accordingly, 8 of the 12 cabinet members including the then vice-president did reject the decision while 4 of them (including the president Abdi Illey) accepted the TPLF-imposed decision. But the whole saga then went astray so much so that the 8 cabinet members in the Somali Regional State who opposed the move had to be all fired out to implement the land dispute deal proposed by the TPLF, at the end of the day. Abdi Illey’s 4-membered group in the cabinet, a minority by any democratic sense, had to turn victorious by firing all the 8 others (including the vice-president) because Abdi Illey & co had the keen supported from TPLF Generals. What is more??
Why the TPLF wanted to favor the Afar in the tribal land dispute/conflict?
For the TPLF, the Afar region is just part of the greater Tigray it envisions. If article 39 of Ethiopia’s facade federalism is to be first invoked by the TPLF (the maker and its breaker) any time it reads greater risk in the wider Ethiopian politics, Tigreay will secede taking Afar along with it — we all know it and they all know it too. Tigreans have not only political and economic supremacy in the Afar areas but they even dominate the urban culture in there – much like the Amhara do in Oromia due to the lingering legacy of the imperial era and that of the derg. Most businesses in the Afar towns are owned by business men of Tigray origin who are affiliates of the TPLF, more often than not. So, for the TPLF, it’s a natural instinct choice for any land dispute deal between the Afar and the Somali being sealed in favor of the former. But more importantly, the TPLF can make sure that the later won’t lose the land it claimed or at least be compensated for it by what could possibly be paid by a party that had no involvement either in the conflict or in the deal to seal it at the end of the day. Here is where Abdi Illey’s attack on Oromia, as supported by the TPLF Generals comes in. He has already been declared as “the best person of the year” by the TPLF’s mouth piece called “Tigraionline.com”. Sooner or later, we will be told that some remote territories disputed among some tribal pastoralists of the Oromo and Somali have been given to the later. And that seals the backdoor deal between Abdi Illey and the TPLF Generals.

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So what?
It’s conceivable that the OPDO are neither aware of it nor capable of stopping this deal. They are created to contradict the Oromo in the very first place. While the Liyu police not only raids Oromo villages crossing borders but also killing their cadre sitting in office, the OPDO did nothing other than dialing on the old digits of the Arat kilo palace. The response was loud and clear though: ‘the number you calling doesn’t exist’. But they are still calling….so amazing…….
.
So, the public should defend itself against these TPLF’s mercenary group called Liyu police by all means possible. We believe semi-organic bodies like the Oromia Police shall stand by the side of the public. We will overcome this dirty war of the TPLF too!
la luta continua vitoria e certa!!!

Oromia: Human Rights League New Year’s Message: “It always Seems Dark Until the Sun Rises” January 2, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in Human Rights.
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 Odaa OromooOromianEconomist

Human rights League of the Horn of Africa


New Year’s Message from  HRLHA“It always Seems Dark Until the Sun Rises”December 31, 2016


The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) is delighted to be closing 2016. The organization is deeply grateful to its valued Board members, reporters, members, and supporters for their extraordinary  efforts to help the HRLHA continue to be the voice for the voiceless in the Horn of Africa in general and in Ethiopia in particular this year.

In 2016, the Horn of Africa Region remains one of the most volatile regions in the world. The civilian unrest in Ethiopia, the civil war in S. Sudan, and Somalia, the mass exodus from Eritrea, Ethiopia, Somalia  to neighboring countries away from executions and famine, were some of the notable crucial problems in the region.

The year of  2016 has been a year of sorrows and chaos for nations  and nationalities in Ethiopia, due to the deplorable evil actions taken by Ethiopian government killing agents against peaceful Oromo, Amhara and Konso protests in which the Oromo, Amhara, Konso and other  nations and nationalities simply tried to exercise their fundamental rights to present their grievances. During the peaceful protests in Oromia, which have been going on for over one  year  in Amhara regional states and Konso Zone,  a number of citizens have been massacred, incarcerated, tortured and disappeared. Due to its mistreatment of its citizens, the government lost control over the country as  a whole and then declared a state of emergency to quell the dissent. Since the state of emergency was declared  on October 8, 2016,  many gross human rights violations have been registered- killings, abductions, and imprisonments. These continue to the present day among Oromo and Amhara nationals.

The staff members and reporters of HRLHA have worked  tirelessly to  expose the government of Ethiopia’s tyranny and defend and promote human rights in 2016; their work this year has been at its most intense than any of the past nine years. We gave maximum efforts to bring to light the atrocities in Ethiopia in a challenging environment characterized by administrative sanctions on mass media, including social media, email, telephone, sanctions designed to hide the atrocities the government killing agents were committing.

We are  greatly indebted to  HRLHA members, reporters and supporters who have shown courage and stood with us on this front to deliver their responsibilities of monitoring and reporting human rights abuses in Ethiopia under such difficult situations.

The HRLHA believes that 2016  was the darkest year in the history of the Oromo  nation. To give just one example, a mother and father lost their three sons in one night in their home to the government killing squad Agazi force. The mother was forced by the killers to sit on her son’s dead body. In other cases, women were raped in front of their husbands. These are just to mention  a few of the crimes known to have been perpetuated against Ethiopians by the dictatorial TPLF/EPRDF government crime groups. The HRLHA believes, however, that behind the darkness there is light for which we must continue fighting “It always Seems Dark Until the Sun Rises”.   It might seem that  the fight for our  basic and fundamental rights is over,  due to the repressions by the dictatorial TPLF/EPRDF government for  over the past twenty five years  since its formation in 1991. But it is not yet over, we should not give up, we must continue fighting for our rights until we win.

Therefore, in 2017, we must redouble the fight to protect human rights, democracy and equality by exposing  the dishonesty of the Ethiopian government to its ordinary citizens, and also to its political party members and government authorities.

The biggest fight of all, however, is the struggle for the well-being of all Ethiopians, for equality, and for the elimination of all forms of discrimination. It is also the most difficult because the present reality still hits hard at those who live through the anxiety and anguish of poverty and violence.

Finally, the HRLHA urges all peace, democracy and  human rights lovers, governments, government and non-government agencies to work together, so that the core values of peace, democracy, human rights, security and development will be restored in the Horn of Africa region in the incoming year of 2017.

“Let us strive together to make  all expectations and goals for each day be fulfilled on the day itself, to remove the darkness in the past  and to bring a brighter future in the incoming year of 2017 “

“We Fight For Human Rights!”

Happy New year for all!!

Garoma B. Wakessa
Director, HRLHA


 

This is Africa: Ethiopia at a crossroads: apartheid, civil war or reconciliation? September 30, 2016

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Despite the country’s constitution professing the equality of ‘all the peoples of Ethiopia’, for the past 25 years ‘equality’ has been a factor of who has the most firepower among the rebel groups that toppled the former military regime in 1991. As a result of the political atmosphere in the country, where the best armed takes all, all aspects of the federal government (i.e. intelligence, military, police, state banks, airlines and core sectors of the country’s economy) are now dominated by an elite from a Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) that represents only 6% of the general population.
Divide and rule: For 25 years, the TPLF elite has guaranteed its grip on state power through the divide-and–rule tactic of festering ethnic animosity. The Amhara and the Oromo are their prime targets. Hate speech against the Amhara (the second–largest ethnic group in the country)was broadcast on state– and party–owned mass media outlets, denigrating millions of people by referring to them as ‘timkehetegna’, which means ‘the conceited’ The killing and jailing of the Oromo (the largest ethnic group in the country) has been normalised, thereby creating an entire generation of people who feel like second-class citizens in their own country.

Ethiopia at a crossroads: apartheid, civil war or reconciliation?

By , This Is Africa, September 27, 2016 


Ethiopia is seeing an increasing number of civilian protests, which are brutally suppressed by the government. It seems that the elite in power needs to heed the lessons taught by the Rwandan genocide: Do not play with ethnic hatred.

Oromo Liberation Front fighters. Photo: Jonathan Alpeyrie/ Wikimedia Commons

Oromo Liberation Front fighters. Photo: Jonathan Alpeyrie/ Wikimedia Commons

The year-long, nationwide and unceasing popular anti-government revolt in Ethiopia has brought the country’s ‘ethnolinguistic federalismexperiment to a dead end. Despite the country’s constitution professing the equality of ‘all the peoples of Ethiopia’, for the past 25 years ‘equality’ has been a factor of who has the most firepower among the rebel groups that toppled the former military regime in 1991. As a result of the political atmosphere in the country, where the best armed takes all, all aspects of the federal government (i.e. intelligence, military, police, state banks, airlines and core sectors of the country’s economy) are now dominated by an elite from a Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) that represents only 6% of the general population.

 

Divide and rule

For 25 years, the TPLF elite has guaranteed its grip on state power through the divide-and–rule tactic of festering ethnic animosity. The Amhara and the Oromo are their prime targets. Hate speech against the Amhara (the second–largest ethnic group in the country)was broadcast on state– and party–owned mass media outlets, denigrating millions of people by referring to them as ‘timkehetegna’, which means the conceited’ The killing and jailing of the Oromo (the largest ethnic group in the country) has been normalised, thereby creating an entire generation of people who feel like second-class citizens in their own country.

There is a lesson to be learned from the Rwandan genocide: Do not to play with ethnic hatred.

Threatening the country they lead

Unlike the former military regime, which relied on force to crush any opposition but never compromised on the sovereignty of the nation, the current TPLF–led dictatorship is unprecedented in its threat to wreak havoc if its absolute power is contested. The late Meles Zenawi was often seen using this tactic of bullying the country whenever his party’s reckless corruption and unconstitutional dominance over the federal government was questioned.

"The late Meles Zenawi was often seen using this tactic of bullying the country whenever his party’s reckless corruption and unconstitutional dominance over the federal government was questioned." Photo: World Economic Forum/ Flickr

One aspect of the mayhem that Meles designed and his colleagues now desire to unleash isthat of instilling hatred among the people of Tigray and other ethnic groups by turning anycriticism of them as leaders of the country into an attack on the Tigray people. This hate–mongering is evidence that the elite does not have the Ethiopian people at heart, onlypower. The Tigray people have not only been betrayed by the TPLF elite but they are alsobeing manipulated as the party tries to hide its many failing. Tigray deserves peace and development as much as the other parts of Ethiopia, not to be taken hostage by the corrupt and power-hungry TPLF, which is terrorising them.

Read: Ethiopia: Paralympian Tamiru Demisse gestures in solidarity with Oromo protestors

Cracks in the ‘divide and rule’ policy

For the first time in the 25 years of minority control of the federal government, the people of the two major ethnic groups, the Amhara and the Oromo, have come together to create a common front of the oppressed. This unexpected show of unity has sent a shockwave throughthe TPLF elite, who is frantic and has sent in the military, armed with tanks, helicopters and missiles, against civilians – as if people who are simply demanding their rights and equalitywere foreign invaders.

 

Country at a crossroads

The current popular opposition in the Oromia and Amhara regional states is a great opportunity for the government to re–examine its divisive policies, admit to its failings and design a reconciliatory road map that would save the nation from descending further into conflict. The elite, however, still chooses to use special killing squads, military force, burning prisons and killing prisoners in custody.

For the past 25 years, ‘equality’ has been a factor of who has the most firepower among the rebel groups that toppled the former military regime in 1991.

In addition, it is now spending taxpayers’ money and foreign aid on the launching of media campaigns to derail the unity of the Amhara and the Oromo people.

A silent coup

Following the first wave of uprising by the Oromo last year, the Ethiopian military, controlled by the TPLF, has made official its unequivocal allegiance to the ‘Revolutionary Democracy’ policy, which is the governing policy of the ruling party. This act of merging party and government into one practically re-mandated the defence force of Ethiopia into being a mere protector of the minority elite and, by implication, declared the country’s constitution obsolete.

This is a silent coup. This fact becomes evident when one considers the supposed industrialisation of Ethiopia, which is to be led by the military, under the Metals and Engineering Corporation (METEC). This is a corporation under the Ethiopian National Defence Force that is fully controlled by generals who were former TPLF rebel leaders. They were tasked by the late Meles Zenawi with the industrialisation of the country. This dangerous disregard for the constitution amounts to running a government inside a government and is pushing Ethiopia towards being an ethnic apartheid state. This can only lead to more violence.

Flag of the Oromo Liberation Front. Photo: J. Olle/ Wikimedia Commons

Embracing real democracy

Just a few months ago, the government won 100% of the seats in parliament seats. Voterigging is suspected. The whole country erupted in opposition, showing the real danger of authoritarianism.

Sending in an army, equipped with tanks and missiles, against civilians – as the government has done against the people of Amhara – for no reason other than the fact that they exercisedtheir democratic rights, is not how democracy works. Such a display of power is the most cowardly and desperate exhibition of despotism.

It is incumbent on the people of Ethiopia not to fall for the traps set by the elite, who seem more determined than ever to encourage ethnic conflict and hatred through their media propaganda.

 

The path of national reconciliation

Unfortunately, due to the divide-and–rule policy of the government over the past 25 years,Ethiopians have been targeted for their ethnicity: The Amhara, Oromo, Anuak, Somali, Tigray, Kembata, Konso and many other ethnic groups have been targeted at different times. This is a sad reality and testifies to the policy of hate–mongering that is practised by the elite.

Read: Ethiopia abandons Addis Ababa “master plan” after Oromo protests

The government of Ethiopia needs to stop encouraging further division and animosity. No Ethiopian should be targeted for his or her ethnicity. There is a lesson to be learned from the Rwandan genocide: Do not to play with ethnic hatred.

However, it is incumbent on the people of Ethiopia not to fall for the traps set by the elite who now, more than ever, seem determined to encourage ethnic conflict and hatred through their media propaganda. Our silence today will not save us sorrow tomorrow. We should say no to the machetes of hatred that the country’s leaders are selling in their media. We should say no to the use of our name to justify the killing of any Ethiopian.

The martyrdom of our time is saying no to hatred and ethnic conflict while calling for equality and justice for all.


 

Oromia (#OromoProtests): Partial list of Oromos mainly students that have been killed by Ethiopian regime police, security agents, Special and armed force during peaceful demonstration of last three months (updated stand. March. 2016) March 18, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Africa, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Ethnic Cleansing, Genocidal Master plan of Ethiopia, Genocide, Oromia, Oromia News.
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Odaa Oromoo#OromoProtests iconic pictureOromo Woman confronts Agazi in CalanqooWomen mourn during the funeral ceremony of a primary school teacher who family members said was shot dead by military forces during protests in OromiaHanna doja. Oromo child, 1st grade student in Kombolcha, Horroo Guduruu, Oromia. Attacked  by Ethiopian regime fascist  forces on 31st December  2015Sabboona Oromoo Baayyisaa Taaddasaa#OromoProtests global solidarity rally organised by the Australian Oromo community in Melbourne, 10 March 2016 p2

Partial list of Oromos mainly students that have been killed by Ethiopian regime police, security agents, Special and armed force during peaceful demonstration of last three months (updated stand. March. 2016)

cropped-qeerroo-edit.jpgPartial list of Oromos mainly students that have been killed by Ethiopian regime police, security agents, Special and armed force during peaceful demonstration of last three months (updated stand. March. 2016)

partial-list-of-oromos-mainly-students-that-have-been-killed-by-ethiopian-regime-police

Related report:-

EHRP-OromoProtests-100-Days-of-Public-Protests

 

 

ABC News: Right Group:Oromia: #OromoProtests: Ethiopia’s security forces carrying out serious rights abuses, killings and rapes in clashes with protesters in Oromia

https://oromianeconomist.wordpress.com/2016/03/15/abc-news-right-group-oromia-oromoprotests-ethiopias-security-forces-carrying-out-serious-rights-abuses-killings-and-rapes-in-clashes-with-protesters-in-oromia/

Oromia: Ethiopia: Civil society calls upon UN Human Rights Council to investigate government crackdown on #OromoProtests February 28, 2016

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Odaa Oromoo

Civil Society


Ethiopia: Civil society calls upon Human Rights Council to investigate government crackdown on Oromo protest

Front  Line Defenders, 24 February 2016


 

To Permanent Representatives of
Members and Observer States of the
UN Human Rights Council
Geneva, 24 February 2016

RE: Addressing restrictions on freedom of assembly and civil society in Ethiopia

Your Excellency,

The undersigned civil society organizations (CSOs) write to express our serious concerns about the Ethiopian Government’s grave restrictions on fundamental human rights, exemplified by the recent crackdown on largely peaceful protests in the Oromia region. As the UN Human Rights Council (UN HRC) prepares to release its landmark recommendations for the proper management of assemblies, we urge your delegation to address the rapidly deteriorating environment for independent dissent and violations of the right to freedom of assembly in Ethiopia at the upcoming 31st UN HRC Session.

Since December 2015, Ethiopian security forces have routinely used excessive and unnecessary lethal force to disperse and suppress peaceful protests in the Oromia region. The protesters, who have been advocating against the dispossession of land without adequate compensation under the government’s Integrated Development Master Plan, have been subjected to widespread rights violations. According to international and national human rights groups, at least 150 demonstrators, including scores of children and university students, have been killed during the protests. It is also widely reported that hundreds of people have suffered bullet wounds and beatings by the police and military.

The authorities have also arbitrarily arrested thousands of people throughout Oromia for participating in or supporting the protests. Many of those detained are being held without charge and without access to family members or legal representation. Numerous human rights activists, journalists and opposition political party leaders and supporters have been arbitrarily arrested and detained in Oromia. Among those arrested and still in detention are Bekele Gerba (Deputy Chair, Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC)), Dejene Tufa (Deputy General Secretary, OFC), Getachew Shiferaw (Editor-in-Chief of the online newspaper Negere Ethiopia), Yonathan Teressa (a human rights defender) and Fikadu Mirkana (reporter with the state-owned Oromia Radio and TV).

The government also continues to misuse the abusive 2009 Anti-Terrorism Proclamation to silence independent reporting and support of the protest movement. Specifically, on January 22, 2016, opposition leader Bekele Gerba and 21 other individuals were arraigned at the Federal First Instance Court, Arada Branch, which granted the prosecutor’s request for 28 days remand to police custody under the Anti-Terrorism Proclamation.

Moreover, weeks earlier, on December 15, 2015, the government publically described the protesters as “an organised and armed terrorist force” in a cynical and disturbing attempt to conflate their legitimate exercise of fundamental civil liberties with acts of terrorism. We remain deeply concerned that this description of the mostly peaceful protesters has also contributed to greater use of excessive force by security personnel.

Prominent human rights experts and groups, including the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, have repeatedly condemned the deliberate misuse of the Anti-Terrorism Proclamation’s overbroad and vague provisions to target journalists and activists. The law permits up to four months of pre-trial detention and prescribes draconian prison sentences for a wide range of activities protected under international human rights law. Dozens of  human rights defenders as well as journalists, bloggers, peaceful demonstrators and opposition party members have been subjected to harassment and politically motivated prosecution under the Anti-Terrorism Proclamation, making Ethiopia one of the leading jailers of journalists in the world.

There are no effective avenues to pursue accountability for abuses given the lack of independence of the judiciary and legislative constraints. During the May 2015 General Elections, the ruling EPRDF party won all 547 seats in the Ethiopian Parliament. In addition, domestic civil society organizations are severely hindered by one of the most restrictive NGO laws in the world. Specifically, under the 2009 Charities and Societies Proclamation, the vast majority of Ethiopian organizations have been forced to stop working on human rights and governance issues, a matter of great concern that has been repeatedly raised including at Ethiopia’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR).

This restrictive environment means that there are few avenues available for accountability and independent dissent in the country. It is essential that the UN Human Rights Council takes a strong position urging the Ethiopian Government to immediately end its systematic campaign to suppress peaceful protests and legitimate human rights activism.

Amid a growing chorus of concern, a number of intergovernmental bodies, including the European Parliament, have called on the Ethiopian government to immediately cease its political intimidation and persecution of peaceful protesters and human rights defenders. Recently, on 21 January, four UN Special Rapporteurs and the Working Group on Enforced or Involuntary Disappearances issued a joint statementcondemning the ongoing crackdown and further called on the Ethiopian Government to “immediately release protesters who seem to have been arrested for exercising their rights to freedom of peaceful assembly and expression, to reveal the whereabouts of those reportedly disappeared and to carry out an independent, transparent investigation into the security forces’ response to the protest.”

During the upcoming 31st session of the Human Rights Council, we urge your delegation to make joint or individual statements (for example during the high-level segment, in interactive dialogue with the High Commissioner, and under other relevant agenda items), reinforcing and building upon the concerns of these and other international bodies.

Specifically, we respectfully request your delegation to press Ethiopia to:

immediately cease the use of excessive and unnecessary lethal force by security forces against protesters in Oromia Region of Ethiopia and elsewhere in Ethiopia;
immediately and unconditionally release journalists, human rights defenders, political opposition leaders and members as well as protesters arbitrarily detained during and in the aftermath of the protests;
urgently establish a thorough, independent, impartial and transparent investigation into all of the deaths resulting from alleged excessive use of force by the security forces, and other violations of human rights in the context of the protests;
ensure that those responsible for human rights violations are prosecuted in proceedings which comply with international law and standards on fair trial and without resort to the death penalty;
and fully comply with its international legal obligations and commitments including under the, ICCPR, African Charter and its own Constitution.

Sincerely,

Article 19

Association for Human Rights in Ethiopia (AHRE)

CIVICUS: World Alliance for Citizen Participation

Civil Rights Defenders

Defend Defenders (East and Horn of Africa Human Right Defenders Project)

Ethiopia Human Rights Project (EHRP)

Front Line Defenders

Human Rights Watch

International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH)


 

https://www.frontlinedefenders.org/en/statement-report/ethiopia-civil-society-calls-upon-human-rights-council-investigate-government


 

DW NEWS: NGO highlights plight of Oromo in Ethiopia February 26, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Africa, Oromia, Oromo.
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Odaa OromooAgazi, fascist TPLF Ethiopia's forces attacking unarmed and peaceful #OromoProtests in Baabichaa town central Oromia (w. Shawa) , December 10, 2015

 

#OromoProtests against the Ethiopian regime fascist tyranny. Join the peaceful movement for justice, democracy, development and freedom of Oromo and other oppressed people in Ethiopia

Human Rights Watch says security forces are continuing to persecute members of Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group, the Oromo. Hundreds have allegedly been killed in recent protests over a government plan to expand the capital Addis Ababa into Oromo land.

http://www.dw.com/en/ngo-highlights-plight-of-oromo-in-ethiopia/av-19071523

Oromia: Ethiopia: Govt Accused of Bloody Crackdown On #OromoProtests February 26, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Africa, Oromia, Oromo.
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Odaa Oromoo#OromoProtests iconic pictureagazi-fascist-tplf-ethiopias-forces-attacking-unarmed-and-peaceful-oromoprotests-in-baabichaa-town-central-oromia-w-shawa-december-10-20151

Ethiopia: Govt Accused of Bloody Crackdown On Protesters

 

By All Africa and Al Jazzera,   22 February 2016

Ethiopian security forces are carrying out a brutal crackdown on peaceful protests in the country’s Oromia region and thousands of people are being held without charge, a human rights group has said.

The demonstrations began in November due to a government plan to expand the boundaries of Addis Ababa into Oromia, which surrounds the capital, raising fears among Oromo people that their farms would be expropriated.

Addis Ababa, which has accused the protesters of having links with “terror groups”, dropped the plan on January 12 and announced the situation in Oromia was largely under control.

The New York-based Human Rights Watch (HRW), however, said the protests were continuing.

Ethiopia’s information minister, Getachew Reda, told Al Jazeera that he had not yet read the report and so could not comment on it.

HRW noted that researchers were unable to determine how many people have been killed or arrested because access to Oromia is restricted.

“[Ethiopian] activists allege that more than 200 people have been killed since November 12, 2015,” the rights group said.

In a previous document at the beginning of January, HRW reported at least 140 killings.

“Flooding Oromia with federal security forces shows the authorities’ broad disregard for peaceful protest by students, farmers, and other dissenters,” Leslie Lefkow, deputy Africa director at Human Rights Watch, said on Monday.

“The government needs to rein in the security forces, free anyone being held wrongfully, and hold accountable soldiers and police who used excessive force,” Lefkow added.

The rights group called on the Ethiopian government to end excessive use of force by its security forces, free everyone detained arbitrarily, and conduct an independent investigation into killings and other security force abuses.

The Oromos are the largest ethnic group in the horn of Africa country.

Ethiopia: Oromo protests will continue unless government ceases ‘killings and torture’

https://uk.news.yahoo.com/ethiopia-oromo-protests-continue-unless-112251659.html?soc_src=social-sh&soc_trk=fb

Ethiopia’s crackdown on land protests ongoing – rights group

 

 

http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/world/ethiopia-s-crackdown-on-l/2537982.html#.VsxcELyVBqn.twitter

PROTEST CRACKDOWNS: BEYOND THE BODY COUNT

The Atlanta Black Star: The Ethiopian government is reportedly continuing its crackdown on the Oromo people February 24, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Africa, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Human Rights, Oromia, Oromia News, Oromo.
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Odaa Oromoo#OromoProtests against the Ethiopian regime fascist tyranny. Join the peaceful movement for justice, democracy, development and freedom of Oromo and other oppressed people in Ethiopia

Human Rights Watch Reports Daily Killings As Ethiopian Government Continues Oromia Crackdown

 

Women mourn during the funeral ceremony of a primary school teacher who family members said was shot dead by military forces during protests in Oromia

Photo: Women mourn during the funeral ceremony of a primary school teacher who family members said was shot dead by military forces during protests in Oromia, Ethiopia in December 2015. (Reuters)


The Ethiopian government is reportedly continuing its crackdown on the Oromo people.

According to the New York-based Human Rights Watch, about 200 protesters have been killed in the latest government operation. Oromia, home to the Oromo people, is Ethiopia’s largest region. Demonstrations in the region broke out when the government attempted to clear a forest for an investment project. Protests escalated when the government decided to expand the borders of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital, to incorporate surrounding towns in Oromia, according to The International Business Times.

Government forces have used heavy-handed tactics to squash the protests, including rounding up and detaining protesters, torture and even extra-judicial killings, according to The Atlanta Blackstar. Many of the early protests were led by students, but that has not stopped the violence from security forces.

“They walked into the compound and shot three students at point-blank range,” said a 17-year-old student in a Human Rights Watch report. “They were hit in the face and were dead.”

The IBT said there are almost daily reports of killings.

“Things have become considerably more violent in the last few days,” said Felix Horne, Horn of Africa researcher at Human Rights Watch. “The government needs to back down and stop the brutal crackdown.”

It’s difficult to get accurate information about what’s going on because Ethiopia does not have a free media. Human Rights Watch says it is relying on information leaking out via social media posts. The foreign-based Oromo Media Network is also reporting on the situation. However, its signals have been jammed by the Ethiopian government. Government forces have also reportedly smashed OMN satellites and jailed people who have shown their broadcasts.

However, the Ethiopian government denies there is a problem and dismissed Human Rights Watch’s latest report.

Getachew Reda, Ethiopia’s communications minister, told the BBC the report was an “absolute lie” and questioned how Human Rights Watch could report on the situation from New York. He also blamed the latest violence on armed gangs “who are trying to stir up emotions in the public.”

According to The IBT, the European Parliament passed a January resolution condemning the government’s crackdown on largely peaceful protesters. However, the U.S. government has not criticized the Ethiopian government, and has called for dialogue. According to The IBT, Ethiopia received $580 million in aid from the U.S. in 2012. Additionally, The Washington Post reported that the U.S. government uses Ethiopian bases to fly drone missions against terrorists groups in Somalia.

Leslie Lefkow, deputy Africa director at Human Rights Watch, said countries that donate money to Ethiopia should pressure the government to stop the killing.

“Ethiopia’s donor countries have responded tepidly, if at all, to the killing of scores of protesters in Oromia,” said Lefkow. “They should stop ignoring or downplaying this shocking brutality and call on the government to support an independent investigation into the killings and other abuses.”


 

Read more at:-

Human Rights Watch Reports Daily Killings As Ethiopian Government Continues Oromia Crackdown


 

UNPO: Ethnic Cleansing in Gambella Region, Ethiopia: What Is to Become of Its Minorities? February 4, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Africa, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Ethnic Cleansing, Gambella, Genocide, Indigenous People.
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Odaa OromooUNPO

Ethnic Cleansing in Gambella Region, Ethiopia: What Is to Become of Its Minorities?

 

Unfortunately it is not unusual for the Ethiopian government to conduct ethnically-based human rights violations in its own country. Only a few weeks go, Oromo civilians were specifically targeted and killed in their home towns following peaceful protests. Today it is the Anuak community who is suffering from oppression by national authorities. The government seems to have started the conflict to repress a group of civilians suspected of affiliation to the Gambella Peoples’ Liberation Movement (GPLM). The People’s Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD) condemns these atrocities and pleads the international community to take these continuous human rights violations in consideration when engaged in relations with the Ethiopian Government.

 

Photo courtesy of Julio Garcia @Flickr

 

On January 27, 2016, around 2:00 am local time, ‘special police’ from the regional administration of Gambella aided by local militia attacked Anuak civilians all over the region. Subsequently, the death of more than four dozen of Anuak civilians have been reported; and the indiscriminate massacre of unarmed Gambella civilians is said to be continuing. Moreover, the local militia close to the regional administrator attacked a prison in Gambella town and residential areas by killing more than 8 people and destroying the regional state prison.

In Gambella, the Ethiopian government arms and trains both the special police forces and the local militias. Therefore, the government is believed to have instigated the current conflict after it has suspected that the Anuak are affiliated to Gambella Peoples’ Liberation Movement (GPLM), one of the founding members of the ‘Peoples’ Alliance for freedom and Democracy’ (PAFD). The instability of the South Sudan is also said to have negatively impacted on the intra-communal harmony.

Between 13 and 16 of December 2003, in Gambella region, the Ethiopian army has massacred over 424 Anuak people, wounding further 200 and causing the disappearances of about 85 people.

Time and again, we have witnessed such profoundly disturbing crimes perpetrated by the current Ethiopian government on civilians of all regions. Since November 2015, the Ethiopian government’s forces are committing similar massacres and brutally treating unarmed Oromo civilians in various Oromia villages and towns. The Oromo civilians are peacefully protesting TPLF’s land-grabbing policies under the pretext of expanding Addis Ababa.

The regime blatantly continues committing similar massacres in Ogaden Somali, Sidama, Tepi-Mezenger, Beni-Shangul and other regions in front of the international community. Civilians and opposition groups and their supporters are arbitrarily imprisoned, continually tortured and denied legal representation. Millions of farmers are continually uprooted from their livelihoods to vacate their land for TPLF’s business. Journalists for writing the truth and all those who dare to exercising their constitutionally guaranteed rights are classified as terrorists.

Therefore, PAFD

– Categorically condemns the Ethiopian government’s systematic instigation of the current conflict in Gambella and urges it to stop the arming of one ethnic group to stand against their own people.

– Calls upon all the Gambella civilians to exercise utmost restraint; stop massacring their own brothers and sisters- instead uniting to resist authoritarian TPLF’s regime

– Calls upon all Gambella related democratic movements and liberation fronts to unite in unanimously denouncing the Ethiopian government’s heinous tactics of inciting conflicts between fraternally co-exited brothers and sisters.

– Calls upon all the international and Ethiopian related democratic forces to unite in condemning the on-going Gambella massacre orchestrated by the Ethiopian government.

– Calls upon all the international humanitarians and Western politicians to rethink their position whilst supporting the Ethiopian TPLF’s authoritarian regime.

– Call upon all foreign groups to desist from interfering in the internal affairs of the Gambella peoples.

 

For the original press release please download this.

http://unpo.org/article/18883

The Peoples’ Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD) Strongly Condemns the Ethnic Cleansing in Gambella State February 3, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
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Odaa OromooPAFD, the genuinely-multinational coalition for freedom and democracy in Ethiopia, covers greater than 70% of area in Ethiopia

 

 

The following is a statement from the Peoples’ Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD), a coalition of five political groups, namely: Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF), Sidama National Liberation Front (SNLF), Gambella People’s Liberation Movement (GPLM) and Benishangul People’s Liberation Movement (BPLM).


 

PAFD Press Release

PAFD Strongly Condemns the Ethnic Cleansing in Gambella 

On January 27, 2016, around 2:00am local time, ‘special police’ from the regional administration of Gambella, aided by local militia, attacked Anuak civilians all over the region. Subsequently, the death of more than four dozens of Anuak civilians have been reported; and the indiscriminate massacre of unarmed Gambella civilians is said to be continuing. Moreover, the local militia, close to the regional administrator, attacked a prison in Gambella town and residential areas by killing more than 8 people and destroying the regional state prison.

In Gambella, the Ethiopian government arms and trains both the special police force and the local militias. Therefore, the government is believed to have instigated the current conflict after it has suspected that the Anuak are affiliated to Gambella People’s Liberation Movement (GPLM), one of the founding members of the Peoples’ Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD). The instability of the South Sudan is also said to have negatively impacted on the intra-communal harmony.

Between 13 and 16 of December 2003, in Gambella region, the Ethiopian army has massacred over 424 Anuak people – wounding further 200 and causing the disappearances of about 85 people.

Time and again, we have witnessed such profoundly disturbing crimes perpetrated by the current Ethiopian government on civilians of all regions. Since November 2015, the Ethiopian government’s forces are committing similar massacres and brutally treating unarmed Oromo civilians in various Oromia villages and towns. The Oromo civilians are peacefully protesting TPLF’s land-grabbing policies under the pretext of expanding Addis Ababa.

The regime blatantly continues committing similar massacres in Ogaden Somalia, Sidama-land, Tepi-Mezenger, Benishangul and other regions in front of the international community. Civilians and opposition groups and their supporters are arbitrarily imprisoned, continually tortured and denied legal representation. Millions of farmers are continually uprooted from their livelihoods to vacate their land for TPLF’s business. Journalists for writing the truth and all those who dare to exercising their constitutionally guaranteed rights are classified as terrorists.

Therefore, PAFD:

– categorically condemns the Ethiopian government’s systematic instigation of the current conflict in Gambella and urges it to stop the arming of one ethnic group to stand against their own people;

– calls upon all the Gambella civilians to exercise utmost restraint; stop massacring their own brothers and sisters – instead uniting to resist against the authoritarian TPLF’s regime;

– calls upon all Gambella related democratic movements and liberation fronts to unite in unanimously denouncing the Ethiopian government’s heinous tactics of inciting conflicts between fraternally co-exited brothers and sisters;

– calls upon all the international and Ethiopian related democratic forces to unite in condemning the ongoing Gambella massacre orchestrated by the Ethiopian government;

– calls upon all the international humanitarians and Western politicians to rethink their position whilst supporting the Ethiopian TPLF’s authoritarian regime;

– call upon all foreign groups to desist from interfering in the internal affairs of the Gambella peoples.

Issued by Peoples’ Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD)
February 2, 2016

Will Expressing Concern Prevent State-Led Mass Murder in Oromia, Ethiopia? February 1, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Africa, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley.
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Odaa OromooDeath toll climbs as #OromoProtests still rage in Oromia state ( Ethiopia); schools remain closed. As of 30 january 2016. Fascist Ethiopian regime conducts genocide against Oromo people.Oromo youth and families in Ginchi paused to remember Aschalew Worku. 24 january 2016

Will Expressing Concern Prevent State-Led Mass Murder in Oromia, Ethiopia?

By Habtamu Dugo*, Finfinne Tribune, 1st February 2016

 

The number of Oromo civilians killed, maimed, tortured, disappeared and raped by Ethiopian government forces has been increasing after Ethiopia’s Foreign Minister Dr. Tedros Adhanom met with the European Union and US Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Powers. Ignoring concerns by the EU and Ambassador Powers over Ethiopia’s government’s violent responses to peaceful Oromo protesters, Tedros’ government has continued with the killings and many other forms of atrocities against the Oromo people, including killing children.

The number of state-led killings has now increased to 185, according Abiyi Atomsa, an Oromo activist who provided the “minimum death tolls”. Another source, Ethiopia Crisis, a group that monitors the crisis and provides updates on the violence, reported on January 29, 2015 that the number of people killed for peacefully protesting against the government over land grabbing “exceeds 200.” A month ago, Human Rights Watch reported that 140 members of the ethnic Oromo were killed for protesting a government plan to expand the boundary of Addis Ababa city into Oromia regional state by evicting Oromo farmers. HRW stated “arrest of respected politician” Bekele Gerba, Deputy Chairman of the Oromo Federalist Congress, marked the escalation of the crisis.

The European Union Parliament, which correctly assessed the crisis and debated on it and passed a 15-point “resolution on the situation in Ethiopia”, is the only international actor with concrete plans to curb massive rights abuses by the Ethiopian government in Oromia if and when this monumental resolution is translated into actions. Not only did the EU parliament condemn the excessive use of violence by government forces against peaceful protesters, it also called for impartial investigations into killings and other human rights violations and for the prosecution of responsible government actors. More importantly, the EU made it clear that aid to Ethiopia will be contingent upon the protection of human rights going forward. The resolution “stresses that financial support to Ethiopia from the EU should be measured attending to the country’s human rights record and the degree to which the Ethiopian government promotes reforms towards democratization, as the only way to ensure stability and sustainable development.”

Contemptuous of the EU and concerns of Western nations providing aid, $3 billion amounting to half of Ethiopia’s national budget, the Ethiopian regime has not taken any steps to de-escalate the situation. In fact, it’s escalating the use of lethal force against unarmed protesters in Oromia and Gambella regions.

The United States government has failed to follow the good example set by the EU parliament; the US does not yet have a concrete plan to curb the unfolding crimes against humanity against the Oromo population by the Ethiopian state. Despite a stark omission of violence against the Oromo protesters by Ethiopian government from a recent White House National Security Council statement, the State Department and some US diplomats have publically expressed increasing levels of concerns about the killings in Oromia, and urged the Ethiopian government to “allow peaceful protests” and called for “a meaningful dialogue about Oromo community [people’s] concerns.”

While increasing expressions of concern are welcome by the Oromo people, all these statements from the US government lack any concrete plans on how to stop the atrocities by the Ethiopian government. Having observed the reluctance by the United States, the Ethiopian government continued with massive atrocity crimes in the state of Oromia. These statements cleverly avoid the need for involving political actors in the said dialogue. It is very well known that the situation calls for more than a dialogue at this stage—a possible change of system or a comprehensive negotiation of a transitional order involving all political actors with opposing ethno-nationalist agenda. Activists on social media tweeted to the White House, the State Department and Ambassador Samantha Powers and demanded a more concrete action that would lead to holding the regime accountable.

Britain has also expressed concern through its member of parliament. James Duddridge, member of the UK Parliament, posted a message on Twitter saying that he, “raised concerns with Tedros Adhanom [Ethiopia’s MFA] about Oromo protests—important for authorities to exercise restraint and address the root causes.” This expression of concern on social media is welcome, but it raises a question as to whether the United Kingdom has any concrete plans to hold the government it helps finance accountable over killings and other forms of crimes against humanity in Oromia and all parts of Ethiopia. Social media activists pointed out to the UK MP that expressing concern will not alter the violent behavior of the Ethiopian government toward Oromo civilians. Activists cited that the killings continued after James Duddridge expressed concern. So, the concern did not have any impact on the behavior of the regime.

However, except for issuing foreign travel advice in Ethiopia to protect its citizens, the British Home Office has not issued a statement condemning the excessive use of force against Oromo civilians. Like the U.S., the U.K. has no publicly-available plan with which to hold its aid darling Ethiopia accountable over massive human rights abuses. The British Department for International Development has kept pumping aid into Ethiopia without accountability mechanism in place regarding how this aid would be used.

Although asking favors is not a bad thing, the Oromo people are not asking the West to do them a favor when they protest in Western cities such as Washington DC, Seattle, Minneapolis, Ottawa, London, Berlin, Melbourne and so on. They are asking for the withdrawal of foreign aid or the conditioning of aid on the protection of human rights because they believe currently the Ethiopian government is using foreign aid to finance its military campaigns in civilian quarters in Oromia and Ethiopia. Oromo demonstrators in the United States, Canada, and at the United Nations headquarters in New York City, demanded them to stop supporting “tyrannical Ethiopian government that is killing children in schools, colleges and universities across Oromia.”

The United States is not committed to democracy and human rights in Ethiopia despite decades of paying lip service. Nothing speaks louder about America’s lack of commitment to human rights and democracy in Ethiopia than US President Barack Obama infamously calling the current one-party totalitarian Ethiopian government “democratically elected,” during a visit to Ethiopia. The US government does not have a detailed plan with which to hold the autocrats in Ethiopia accountable. It is certain that expressing concern will not stop the ethno-partisan government of Ethiopia from carrying out its habitual and planned atrocities against the Oromo people.

In Oromia, none of the perennial questions raised by millions of Oromo marchers in hundreds of cities and villages have been answered so far. The Ethiopian government has not bowed to international laws, its own constitution, and toothless expressions of concern and condolences from Western diplomats and politicians over killings.

Since December 15, Oromia civilian administration has been illegally suspended in Oromia and Oromia has been brought under military rule. The Oromo people were declared “terrorists, witches and devils” by Prime Minister Hailemariam Deslagn and Information Minster Getechew Reda and centrally-coordinated merciless military actions were threatened and acted upon. Henok Gebissa, a visiting international law fellow at Washington Lee University School of Law in Lexington, Virginia, writes about the military occupation of Oromia as follows: “The current military control in Oromiya exactly resembles the famous Nazi Law known as The Third Reich of 1933 that Nazified all German law in order to grant arbitrary power to Hitler to detain and convict Jews.” In this case, the military is giving arbitrary power to elites of Tigrean Peoples Liberation Front ruling Ethiopia. Gebissa also described growing humanitarian crises where, in addition to all schools in Oromia, the government has deployed the military to hospitals in order to prevent injured individuals from getting medical treatment. People are left to die in the streets from bleeding caused by gunshots.

The first step in finding solutions to questions of land ownership and self-rule raised by the Oromo protesters is to stop the killings. Stop firing live ammunition into crowds of innocent school children with backpacks. But so far international actors have not demonstrated the will to stop the killings, let alone find a solution to politico-survival questions raised by the Oromo people.

The Oromo people have not taken the government announcement that it’s going to cancel the master plan as credible because they know that there is no written document to prove that it has canceled the plan. They also don’t trust the ruling party which was ordered to make the statement to dampen the protests and to curtail international media interest in the ever-deepening crisis. The Oromo upgraded their question to the question of national self-government, democracy, justice and release of all political prisoners.

Making over 45 million people in Ethiopia, the Oromo in the homeland and in the diaspora are asking Western partners of the Ethiopian government to at least choke the flow of aid until they (international actors) come up with plans to end pervasive violence and to ensure the creation of a new democratic order that respects the will of the people. Cutting aid to Ethiopia is no simple action since aid accounts for a good half of Ethiopia’s budget and obviously a significant part of that budget is funding the military being used by one group to persecute non-coethnics with the current rulers of Ethiopia who do not represent the Oromo or the rest of the country.

The international community must also urge that journalists, media, human rights organizations, humanitarian organizations and independent observers have access to Ethiopia in general and to hotspots of unfolding crises such as Oromia, Ogaden, Gambella and other regions needing urgent humanitarian help in particular.

The Ethiopian government thrives on massive surveillance and information control whenever it engages in massive atrocities internally. Human Rights Watch’s Ethiopia researcher, Felix Horne writes profoundly that it is such monopolistic control over information by government that has rendered the “massive crisis” invisible to the world. Horne’s recommendation to Ethiopia’s partners: “But they should also be clear that Ethiopia needs to ensure access to information and stop disrupting telecommunications and targeting social media users. The world needs to know what is happening in Oromia—and Ethiopians have a right to know what is happening in their country.”

Simon Allison writes that “Ethiopia exploits AU role to suppress international criticism,” including surveillance on AU activities by the National Intelligence and Security Service of Ethiopia. As result, AU has been effectively prevented from saying anything on Oromo protests.

If the Ethiopian regime continues to deny access to affected regions, the world is correct to assume that Ethiopia is hiding crimes against humanity against the Oromo people and others. The denial of access to information has made it difficult to assess the real magnitude of the crisis although it’s clear the crisis is massive. Number of people being killed by the government is increasing, but the world does not know about it. Death tolls cited in this piece are minimum estimates and they are just the tip of the iceberg as far as the atrocities by government forces are concerned because the regime intentionally prevents any “negative news from coming out of Ethiopia.”

* Habtamu Dugo is Adjunct Professor of Journalism and Communications at Howard University, Washington DC. He is also member of the OSA Board of Directors. He can be reached at hab.dugo@gmail.com

 

Habtamu Dugo:- Will Expressing Concern Prevent State-Led Mass Murder in Oromia, Ethiopia?

 

Oromia /Ethiopia: More Victims of Extra-Judicial Killings, Kidnappings, Arrests and Detentions. The Human Rights League has confirmed that deaths resulting from the ongoing crackdown of peaceful protesters in various parts of the state of Oromia has now reached 122, while mass arrests and detentions have also been intensified. December 26, 2015

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Odaa Oromoooromoprotests-tweet-and-share1Sabboona Oromoo Baayyisaa TaaddasaaStop killing Oromo Students#OromoLivesMatters!Agazi, fascist TPLF Ethiopia's forces attacking unarmed and peaceful #OromoProtests in Baabichaa town central Oromia (w. Shawa) , December 10, 2015Baqqalaa Garbaa and Dajanee Xaafaa of Oromo Federalist CongressSabboonaa Oromoo Barataa Dajannee Sarbeessaaoromoprotests-finfinnee-aau-over-kidnapping-of-two-female-students-their-name-is-lomitu-waqbulcho-3rd-year-afan-oromo-hirut-tule-2nd-year-chemical-engineering-18-december-2012Hawi Tazara , our sister, our music, our famous Oromo artist

Oromia Regional State /Ethiopia: More Victims of Extra-Judicial Killings, Kidnappings, Arrests and Detentions

HRLHA Urgent Action

December 25, 2015

imagesThe Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) has confirmed that deaths resulting from the ongoing crackdown of peaceful protesters in various parts of the regional state of Oromia has now reached 122, while mass arrests and detentions have also been intensified. Top officials of the opposition Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC) party have been targeted in the most recent cases of kidnappings, arrests and detentions. Accordingly, Mr. Dajane Tafa, Deputy General Secretary of OFC, was kidnapped by federal armed forces and taken away to yet unknown destination yesterday morning, December 24, 2015 around the area known as Giyorgis, in the centre of the Capital Finfinne/Addis Ababa on his way to work. In the same way, Mr. Bekele Garba, Deputy Chairman of the OFC, who spent about four years in jail on fabricated allegations and released recently, was also arrested yesterday afternoon from his home in Adama and taken away also by armed federal forces. HRLHA has been informed that homes of both Mr. Dajane Tafa and Mr. Bekele Garba have been searched for hours; and that of Mr. Bekele Gerba in particular remained invaded and surrounded by the federal armed forces until late in the afternoon.

hrlha-more-victims-of

Oromia: 600 Oromo Farming Families Evicted in Sululta for the Master Plan Just Last Month December 13, 2015

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Say no to the master killer. Addis Ababa master plan is genocidal plan against Oromo people. Say no.Say no to the master killer. Addis Ababa master plan is genocidal plan against Oromo people

600 Oromo Farming Families Evicted in Sululta for the Master Plan Just Last Month

Muddee/December 12, 2015 · Finfinne Tribune | Gadaa.com |

According to a media report, just last month alone, 600 Oromo farming families were evicted from Sululta, one of the towns in Oromia affected by the Addis Ababa Master Plan of the Ethiopian Federal government. The Master Plan evictions in Sululta came in November 2015, just before the latest escalations of Oromo protests as Oromo students in particular, and the Oromo public in general, engage the Federal government to stop the Addis Ababa Master Plan as well as the overall land-grabbing campaigns being undertaken by the Federal government in the name of “development” across Oromia. The report about the Master Plan evictions of 600 Oromo households in Sululta contradicts the Ethiopian Federal government’s stated position that the Addis Ababa Master Plan is still in its drafting phase awaiting public deliberations. Last year, during the April-May 2014’s #OromoProtests, the government promised to open the Master Plan for public deliberations only to forego that phase of the policy-making altogether. Protesters say the government’s promise of public deliberations are only tricks to buy time to fully implement the Master Plan and other land-grabbing campaigns across Oromia.

Here’s an excerpt from the DW report:

One Oromo farmer from Sululta, a town part of the ‘integrated master plan’ located 26 kilometers (16 miles) to the north of Addis Ababa, spoke to DW on condition of anonymity. He claimed that in late November alone, the government evicted 600 farming families on the grounds that their land was needed for the construction of a factory. When asked if they had received fair compensation and a new home, the farmer told DW that the money given to them was ‘very meager,’ and that the families had so far not been given a place to relocate to.

Read More (DW.com)

http://www.dw.com/en/outcry-as-oromo-protests-in-ethiopia-turn-violent/a-18912721?maca=en-rss-en-all-1573-rdf

http://finfinnetribune.com/Gadaa/2015/12/600-oromo-farming-families-evicted-in-sululta-just-last-month-for-the-master-plan/

Oromia/Ethiopia: Human rights defender says attacks on Oromos are ethnic cleansing war crimes. December 9, 2015

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???????????Human rights League of the Horn of AfricaStop killing Oromo StudentsOromo students Protests, Western Oromia, Mandii, Najjoo, Jaarsoo,....

Oromia/Ethiopia: Human rights defender says attacks on Oromos are ethnic cleansing war crimes.

 

Oromia/Ethiopia: Region-Wide, Heavy-Handed Crackdown on Peaceful Protesters

HRLHAHRLHA Urgent Action

For Immediate Release

The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) expresses its grave concern at the continuation of gross human rights violations in Oromia Regional State – violations that have regularly occurred since 1991 when the TPLF/EPRDF came into power.

The most recent heinous crime was committed – and is still being committed – against defenseless schoolchildren protesting against the approval of “the Addis Ababa Integrated Master Plan” by the Oromia Regional State Parliament a month ago. The peaceful protest involved many elementary school, high school and university students, and civilians. Among them were students in Western Oromia zones: Najo, Nekemt, Mandi high schools, and in other towns, in Central Oromia in Ginchi, Ambo, Addis Ababa high schools and the surrounding towns, Eastern and Southern Oromia zones, in Haromaya, and Bule Hora Universities, and many more schools and universities. In violation of the rights of the citizen to peaceful demonstration enshrined in the Ethiopian Constitution(1) [Chapter Two, Article 30 (1) states: “Everyone has the right to assemble and to demonstrate together with others peaceably and unarmed, and to petition. Appropriate regulations may be made in the interest of public convenience relating to the location of open-air meetings and the route of movement of demonstrators or, for the protection of democratic rights, public morality and peace during such a meeting or demonstration.”], students, in all of these places, were severely beaten, imprisoned or even killed.

The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa emphasizes that the ongoing violence and crimes committed in Oromia Regional State for over two and a half decades by the TPLF perpetrators against the Oromo Nation amount to war crimes, and crimes against humanity – a clear failure of the Oromo People Democratic Organization (OPDO) authorities, an organization claiming to represent the Oromo Nation. The members of this bogus political organization have proved to be not the Oromo peoples’ true representatives, but rather stand-ins for their real masters who have compromised the interests of the Oromo Nation. The Oromia Regional State authorities/OPDO did not resist the TPLF regime when Oromo children, farmers, intellectuals, members of political organizations were killed, abducted, imprisoned, tortured and evicted from their livelihoods by TPLF security agents in the past two and half decades. Instead, they helped the TPLF regime to control the political and economic resources of the Oromia Regional State. TPLF high officials and ordinary level cadres in Oromia Regional State engaged in enriching themselves and their family members by selling Oromo land, looting and embezzling public wealth and properties in the occupied areas of the Oromo Nation, and committing many other forms of corruption.

Committing atrocities and crimes against humanity are failures to comply with obligations under international law, international human rights law and international humanitarian law, including the principles of proportionality and discrimination. With many civilians suffering from the crimes and serious violations of human rights, and by not taking any measures to ensure the accountability of those responsible for these crimes and violations, it has become clear that after all these years the so called Oromia Parliament (Caffee Oromiyaa) has betrayed the Oromo people by not protecting them. The OPDO members and the Oromia Parliament (Caffee Oromiyaa) members should not continue in silence while Oromo children are brutalized by Aga’azy squads deployed by the TPLF for ethnic cleansing. The Oromia Parliament(Caffee Oromiyaa) and OPDO have a moral obligation to dissolve their institutions and stand beside their people to resist the TPLF regime’s aggression.

The HRLHA believes that the gross human rights violations committed by the TPLF government, in cooperation with OPDO in the past two and half decades against Oromo Nation, have been pre-planned every time they have happened. TPLF regime security agents imprisoned, killed, tortured, kidnapped, disappeared, and evicted from their ancestral lands thousands of Oromo nationals, simply because of their ethnic backgrounds and to acquire their resources. The TPLF inhuman actions against Oromo civilians are clearly genocidal, a crime against humanity and an ethnic cleansing, which breach domestic and international laws, and all international treaties the government of Ethiopia signed and ratified.

The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) expresses its deep concern over the safety and well-being of these Oromo nationals who have been arrested without any court warrant and are being held in different police stations, military camps, “Maekelawi” compound, the main federal police investigation center, in Central Addis Ababa and in different unknown places.

Therefore, HRLHA calls upon governments of the West, all local, regional and international human rights agencies to join hands and demand an immediate halt to these extra-judicial actions, terrorizing civilians and the immediate unconditional release of the detainees.

The HRLHA also calls on all human- rights defender non-governmental, civic organizations, its members, supporters and sympathizers to stand beside the HRLHA and provide moral, professional and financial help to bring the dictatorial TPLF government and officials to international justice.

The HRLHA is a non-political organization that attempts to challenge abuses of human rights of the people of various nations and nationalities in the Horn of Africa. It works to defend fundamental human rights, including freedoms of thought, expression, movement and association. It also works to raise the awareness of individuals about their own basic human rights and those of others. It encourages respect for laws and due process. It promotes the growth and development of free and vigorous civil societies.

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Copied to:

– UNESCO Headquarters
– UNESCO – Africa Department
– UNESCO – Africa Regional Office
– Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights
– Office of the UNHCR
– African Commission on Human and Peoples’ Rights (ACHPR)
– Council of Europe
– U.S. Department of State – Ethiopia Desk

Why are African citizens leaving their countries ? Xenophobia – Mediterranean Sea – Killing in Libya… April 30, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Africa, Amnesty International's Report: Because I Am Oromo, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Ethnic Cleansing, Groups at risk of arbitrary arrest in Oromia: Amnesty International Report, Human Rights Watch on Human Rights Violations Against Oromo People by TPLF Ethiopia, Janjaweed Style Liyu Police of Ethiopia, Jen & Josh (Ijoollee Amboo), Nimoona Xilahuun Imaanaa, The 2014 Ibrahim Index of African Governance, The Mass Massacre & Imprisonment of ORA Orphans, The Tyranny of TPLF Ethiopia.
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OEthiopia is the one of the lowest in social Progress 2015Oromo refugees in Yemen

When we are condemning J-Zuma and his fellow Zwelithini‘s statement, we must not skip the fundamental question of “why are citizens running away from their countries in Africa? Why Zimbabweans, Nigerian, Mozambicans etc. are so many in South Africa? What Malian, Senegalese, Eritreans… are doing on the Mediterranean Sea? What Ethiopian, Eritreans… are looking for in Libya on their way to cross the sea? And Why African Leaders and institutions are silence on these questions? Close to 2000 migrants died crossing the Mediterranean to Europe this year only, many times more than during the same period in 2014…

Many in our continent, many of our leaders and institutions know the answers to these questions. Unfortunately, there are no actions being taken to resolve them; there are not even any honest acknowledgements of the problem; rather we are served with empty diplomatic statements everyday with no decisive action for change. We are turning around and the situation is getting worse.

https://oromianeconomist.wordpress.com/2015/04/28/if-ethiopias-economy-is-so-vibrant-why-are-young-people-leaving/

assodesire

President Jacob Zuma, reacting to criticisms from African countries over the xenophobic violence against foreigners in South Africa recently declared: “Why are their citizens not in their countries? Why are they in South Africa? This is an unacceptable statement from a leader of a big country, and made in a very wrong time. We all know that the xenophobic violence started last month after the Zulu King, Goodwill Zwelithini said that “foreigners should pack their belongings and leave the country”.

In that context, President Zuma’s declaration this week is a dangerous move that can be understood by those South African involved in the violence as a justification of their evil actions… This is really unfortunate especially as it is coming from an African Union member that is investing and doing business in most of African countries.

Wrong timing again because South Africa is due to host the 25th

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UNPO: Getting United, Bold, Loud and Active Key to Uncover the Suffering of Minority Women and Misuse of EU Funds in Ethiopia. #Oromia. #Ogaden. #Africa February 6, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Africa, Ogaden, Oromia, Oromo.
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O

Getting United, Bold, Loud and Active Key to Uncover the Suffering of Minority Women and Misuse of EU Funds in Ethiopia

On 4 February 2015, the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) in cooperation with the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF), hosted by Ana Gomes MEP (S&D) and Julie Ward MEP (S&D) at the European Parliament in Brussels, welcomed a number of international guests to speak about the serious issues facing minority groups in Ethiopia, particularly ethnic minority women. At the event titled ‘Minority Women’s Rights: An Ethiopian Inferno?’, participants spoke about the systematic persecution of Ogaden and Oromo ethnic groups in Ethiopia by the ruling regime; combining expert analysis and personal accounts to not only share views, but also help plot a course of action.

 

In his introduction UNPO Secretary General, Marino Busdachin, raised the hypocritical stance of the western world towards Ethiopian governance and the Ethiopian people – a theme that would run through the course of the discussions that followed. By outlining the huge amount of aid that Ethiopia receives – over $3 billion per year on average – Mr Busdachin questioned the motives of the European Union (EU). Aid constitutes over half of the total budget of the Ethiopian government (with the EU being the second largest single contributor), yet there is no transparency in the use of this aid and no safeguards or effective conditions attached to money in order to ensure its proper usage. To this end Mr Busdachin concluded by saying that the 15 May upcoming elections in Ethiopia are an opportunity for the EU to change its relationship with Ethiopia, encourage democratic opposition to the regime and wake up to its responsibilities outside of Europe.

 

Mr Busdachin then passed the floor to Julie Ward MEP who spoke of her political concerns surrounding the use of aid funds in the Ethiopian regime’s policy of systematic violence used against Ethiopian minorities, particularly women. Ms Ward said that the violence in Ethiopia is “causing a fractured society” and causing sections of this society to crumble like a house of cards. She said that the use of violence in any country makes minority women particularly vulnerable as the combination of deeply rooted discrimination and use of physical force in a socio-political mean that minority women lose their power to influence and improve society. Like Mr Busdachin before her, she attacked the EU’s role in providing funds to Ethiopia while turning a blind eye to how these funds are being used on the ground. Ms Ward concluded powerfully by admitting that “silence is complicity; silence is guilt”, if the EU does not speak out then it is complicit too.

 

 

Ana Gomes MEP then extrapolated on the points made by Ms Ward by talking about the inherent lack of transparency in the Ethiopian governance structure. Drawing on her personal experiences of visiting Addis Ababa, Ms Gomes talked about the Ethiopian regime’s ability to use politically correct language and let the international community hear what they want to hear. The EU in turn has used Ethiopia as an exemplary case study of what aid promotion can achieve. This reciprocal denial between the regime and the EU means that it has become very hard to actually discover the true situation in the country. Restriction on freedom of expression and the freedom of the media particularly distressed Ms Gomes, who underlined that the EU needs to support brave journalists and activists on the ground, who in turn can reveal much of the truth that is hidden by organisations, media outlets and political parties supportive of the Ethiopian government. She finished by stating that the Ethiopian diaspora also has a responsibility; they are in a position to know part of the true situation in Ethiopia but not be constrained by restrictions on their freedom of expression. Ms Gomes called on all Ethiopian ethnic minority diaspora to unite, forgoing any current disagreements and finding the right platform from where to voice their concerns and ideas.

 

 

The first panel Divide and Conquer – State Sanctioned Repression in Ethiopia was opened by Mr Abdullahi Mohamed of the African Rights Monitor, who gave an account of Ethiopia’s non-compliance with several international human rights conventions. Mr Mohamed described how the Ethiopian regime has signed many international human rights conventions but continuously fails to follow through with any of the recommendations made by international actors regulating convention implementation. Among these are examples of Ethiopian unwillingness to submit mandatory reports – the 2011 Ethiopian state review requested by the Committee on Civil and Political Rights was 17 years late – and the regular denial of access to minority regions to UN monitoring groups and special rapporteurs. Mr Mohamed also highlighted the pressing need for Ethiopia to allow access to minority regions such as Ogaden for international humanitarian organisations whose continued absence from the area is causing serious humanitarian crises.

 

The next speaker was Mr Abdullahi Hussein, former head of the Ethiopian state media, who had managed to smuggle over 100 hours of footage to Sweden when he fled his home country, appalled by the brutal crimes committed by the regime he had worked for. He presented his findings from the footage and personal accounts of what he experienced. His moving story recounted how he progressed in the governance structure of Ethiopia and became increasingly exposed to military fear tactics and persecution in minority areas such as the Ogaden region. He spoke of media dominance by the regime and the smokescreen that is created to prevent the outside world learning of serious persecutions that take place, especially with regard to sexual violence used against women in the infamous Prison Ogaden.

 

The floor was then given to Mr Ato Abebe Bogale, Vice-Chairman of the Ethiopian political opposition movement Ginbot 7, who expressed his exasperation that despite the myriad human rights reports and empty words of foreign powers, no concrete action is being taken. He stressed the extent to which systematic persecution of political opposition, minority groups and women has permeated throughout all levels of governance in Ethiopia and is a pandemic that needs to be stopped. He called on the EU to stop focusing on the apparent economic improvements that are being made in the country and to consider the human cost of achieving positive growth figures saying, “for the sake of humanity and for the betterment of Ethiopia and Africa, please stop helping the dictatorship within the country”. Mr Bogale’s speech was followed by Ms Dorothée Cambou, PhD candidate at the Free University of Brussels (VUB) specialising in the rights of indigenous groups. Ms Cambou contextualised the actions of the Ethiopian government within its national, regional and international legal obligations, and emphasised the land rights of indigenous peoples in relation to development projects.

 

 

The first speaker on the second panel Victims of Politics – Women in Ogaden and Oromia was Ms Juweria Bixi Ali who, on behalf of young Ogaden women in Ethiopia, spoke of the vulnerability that minority women in Ethiopia experience being the targets of the dictatorship’s attempts to break the will of ethnic minorities in the country. She spoke passionately about the horrors that minority women experience at the hands of military personnel who are specifically trained how to rape and abuse women in order to “shame the men and disgrace the women”. Ms Ali described how the military use tactics of sexual violence and orchestrated starvation against women in particular in order to instil the maximum amount of fear in a people.

 

 

Following Ms Ali was Mr Graham Peebles, a freelance journalist who had visited the Ogaden and surrounding regions on a number of occasions. He spoke of many of the interviews that he had conducted with both the victims and confessed perpetrators of these crimes. He spoke of how orchestrated rape and fear tactics have become a norm in Ethiopia, and the horrors that he spoke of are by no means isolated cases. He described that no woman, particularly those of targeted ethnic groups, is safe from the state sponsored persecution. He concluded with yet another plea to the EU to eliminate their hypocritical practices of providing financial support to this regime and questioned how donor countries around the world could have a clear conscience when supporting such blatant criminality.

 

The floor was then passed to Dr Baro Keno Deressa who gave a chilling account of the medical issues that occur from regular use of rape against women. He described how rape that is used for extracting information, political terror and as a reward for soldiers does not only undermine the social standing of women but can cause terrible, untreatable medical conditions that victims have to live with for the rest of their lives, including HIV transmission and genital deformation. He also outlined that the rape tactics used by the Ethiopian government against Oromo women are destroying the traditional social fabric of the Oromo people, creating a large gap in gender equality in a people that are traditionally egalitarian and have a long and proud history of democratic values.

 

The final speaker of the panel was Dr Badal Hassan, representative of the ONLF, who called on the Ethiopian regime to remove all suffering and oppression that his people face and allow them to pursue their right to self-determination. He summarised the main facts surrounding the persecution of the Ogaden and Oromo peoples: tens of thousands of civilian executions, tortures, rapes and forced migration. He also spoke of the persecutions that Ethiopia conducts against Ogaden and Oromo people who have fled to neighbouring countries making this an international issue rather than a domestic problem. He concluded by calling on all Ethiopians, regardless of ethnicity or religion, to unite and raise their collective voices against oppression.

 

Ms Ana Gomes MEP closed the panel discussion by reaffirming her commitment to take the issues that had been raised to the relevant parliamentary committees and push for promises to be made and firm action to be taken. Although she said it may be a slow process, she urged everyone present, especially the Ethiopian diaspora to “get united, bold, loud and active”, assuring that there are politicians like herself and Ms Julie Ward who will listen, and in time, will make others listen too.

 

UNPO is fully committed to work towards raising the issues of human rights and democracy in Ethiopia with all relevant international stakeholders and demand concrete action to address the persecution of innocent civilians; be they Ogadeni, Oromo, or from any other ethnic group. The 4 February conference at the European Parliament was an important first step in the right direction, but much more remains to be done to overcome the silent complicity of Western donors in relation to the Ethiopian inferno.

Read more at:

http://unpo.org/article/17931

The genocidal Ethiopia and Its Janjaweed Style Liyu Police: The Killings of 59 Oromo Men, Women and Children, The Wounding of 42 Others, the Confiscation of Property and the Forcible Removal of People from Their Ancestral Land in Eastern Oromia January 19, 2014

Posted by OromianEconomist in Africa, Colonizing Structure, Corruption, Dictatorship, Domestic Workers, Environment, Ethnic Cleansing, Food Production, Human Rights, Human Traffickings, ICC, Janjaweed Style Liyu Police of Ethiopia, Knowledge and the Colonizing Structure., Knowledge and the Colonizing Structure. African Heritage. The Genocide Against Oromo Nation, Land Grabs in Africa, Nelson Mandela, Oromia, Oromiyaa, Oromo, Oromo Identity, Oromo Nation, Oromo Social System, Oromo the Largest Nation of Africa. Human Rights violations and Genocide against the Oromo people in Ethiopia, Oromummaa, Self determination, Slavery, South Sudan, The Colonizing Structure & The Development Problems of Oromia, Tyranny, Uncategorized, Warlords.
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Oromo Studies Association’s (OSA’s) Letter to U.S. Secretary of State on the Killings of 59 and Wounding of 42 Oromos in Eastern Oromia by Ethiopian-Trained “Liyu Police”:

January 17, 2014

The Honorable John F. Kerry
Secretary of State
U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street N.W.
Washington, DC20520

Subject: The killings of 59 Oromo men, women and children, the wounding of 42 others, the confiscation of property and the forcible removal of people from their ancestral land in eastern Ethiopia

Dear Mr. Secretary,

I am writing this letter on behalf of the Oromo Studies Association, an independent scholarly, multi-disciplinary, non-profit organization based in North American. My purpose is to bring to your attention and to protest on behalf of the members of OSA a crime committed against the Oromo in Eastern Ethiopia, that is, the killings of 59 Oromo men, women and children, the wounding of 42 others and the confiscation/destruction of property with an estimated value of Eth$14,726,000 in the eastern Oromia zone of Ethiopia. These acts of extreme and unprovoked violence, killings, violent wounding, burning of houses and confiscation of cattle and other property of the Oromo citizens in eastern Oromia zone, were committed by Ethiopian government-trained special Somali militia forces known as “Liyu Police” (translation: Special Police Force). The Ethiopian regime arms Somali in that region while disarming Oromo farmers. These actions of deliberately arming one people while equally deliberately disarming the other and, thus, by creating conflict between formerly closely related people – groups who have lived peacefully as neighbors for centuries – goes beyond abdicating governmental responsibility. It is a heinous crime that this government commits against peoples within its jurisdictional borders. The world regards these victims as citizens of Ethiopia, but they are being seriously mistreated with no proper defense available.

In the past several months, there has been a new wave of killing of Oromo nationals in particular who reside in the eastern Oromia zone of Ethiopia. Targeted Oromo victims suffer also the confiscation of their property and removal by the thousand of residents from their ancestral lands. This is a miserable new policy which constitutes nothing less than a strategy for creating a blood feud between the two culturally related people, namely, the Oromo and Somali in eastern Oromia zone of Ethiopia. In the sacred land of their birth, Oromo children, women and unarmed men are killed systematically by Ethiopian government Special Police forces. Once the slaughter is completed, these government-equipped forces then callously deny their victims even decent burial, which, in itself, is a crime against humanity.

The Ethiopian government is responsible for inflicting a great deal of harm and damage on defenseless Oromo peasants through this practice of arming Somali against disarmed Oromo farmers by building special police force comprised of Somalis. This appears to be a continuation of the callously inhuman policy of the Ethiopian regime that led to the removal of Oromo peasants from seven major ancestral regions covering extensive territories in the eastern Oromia zone of Ethiopia. Most OSA members are Oromo Americans, who closely follow events in the region and whose findings are confirmed by the reports of pain and suffering of their families – mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, relatives and friends – who were killed, wounded and displaced, and whose livelihood was destroyed by Ethiopian government Special Police forces made up of Somali armed by the regime.

The Oromo Studies Association, OSA, was established 26 years ago by international scholars from around the globe to promote studies related and relevant to the Oromo and other peoples in the Horn of Africa. In its attempt to create academic forums where ideas and research findings about the Oromo and other people of Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa are freely discussed, OSA has established a peer-reviewed Journal of Oromo Studies, other periodic publications, as well as organizing regular mid-year and annual conferences. OSA has been involved in building a knowledge base for creating a democratic future for the peoples of Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa. In our scholarly organization Somali and Oromo scholars work together. The Journal of Oromo Studies publishes research papers on Somali studies. Our goal is to strengthen historical relations between the two related peoples.

You may be surprised to learn that Oromia, the Oromo regional state in Ethiopia, is the largest, the richest and the most densely populated regional state in Ethiopia. Because the Oromo constitute the single largest national group in Ethiopia – and in the entire region – they are regarded as the greatest threat to the ruling minority group, dominated by members historically affiliated with the Tigrayan Liberation Front (TPLF). The current government is dominated by Tigrayans persons whose ethnicity represents less than seven percent of the population of Ethiopia. Current Ethiopian government policies, which target populations on the basis of ethnicity, are best understood in light of a history of ethnic politics and ethnic discrimination. Arming Somalis to destroy Oromo in order to confiscate their lands and other resources continues ethnic politics in its most brutal form.

Oromo do not have powerful friends in the western world who bring the injustices that they suffer to the attention of international community. The Oromo Studies Association requests that you respond to our voice as a voice of conscience uttered to the international community. We urge that you immediately put pressure on the Ethiopian regime to desist from driving Oromo out their ancestral land in eastern Oromia zone of Ethiopia. We request that the State Department under your able leadership look into this critical matter take effective action while there is time to reverse a criminal policy and save the lives and livelihood of vulnerable populations in Eastern Ethiopia.

In the light of the issue raised which is only the most recent of an ongoing series of violent attacks on Oromo farmers in eastern Oromia zone during 2013, the Oromo Studies Association (OSA) urgently requests that the State Department utilize its good offices to seek justice by putting pressure on the Ethiopian government to:

• Stop immediately the Liyu Police attacks on Oromo farmers in the eastern Oromia zone of Ethiopia.

• Return, without delay, those who were forcibly driven from their ancestral lands in eastern Oromia zone of Ethiopia.

• Bring to speedy trial those who ordered the Liyu Police force to attack, killing 59 defenseless Oromo children, men and women and wounding 42 others while confiscating or destroying property estimated at Eth$14,726,000.

• Pay compensation for the lives lost and the property confiscated from those defenseless Oromo farmers in eastern Oromia zone of Ethiopia.

• Urge the Ethiopian government officials to stop the forcible removal of thousands of Oromo farmers from their ancestral lands in eastern Oromia zone of Ethiopia and make sure that such measures will never be repeated in Oromia or other parts of Ethiopia.

• Advise the leaders of the Ethiopian government to abandon the cruel and crude policy of disarming Oromo while unleashing the special police force on defenseless children, men and women.

• Strongly urge the leaders of the Ethiopian government to respect and implement the provisions in their own Constitution, which officially guarantees respect for human rights and democratic governance.

The Oromo Studies Association requests that the State Department, under your leadership, set an example by taking the above measures in a timely fashion.

You have an extraordinary opportunity to make a difference in the lives of millions of Oromo and other people in Ethiopia. Our scholarly association appreciates your good efforts in this regard.

Sincerely,

Ibrahim Elemo, President
Oromo Studies Association
P.O.Box: 6541
Minneapolis, MN 55406-0541
E-mail: ielemo@weisshospital.com

CC:
Ambassador Girma Birru
Embassy of FDRE, Washington, D.C
3506 International Drive, N.W.
Washington, D.C. 20008

Mr. Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General
Office of the Secretary General of United Nations
885 Second Avenue
New York, NY 10017, USA

Mr. David Cameron, Prime Minister of UK
10 Downing Street, London, UK

The Hon. Tony Abbott, MP
Prime Minister
Parliament House
CANBERRA ACT 2600

http://gadaa.com/oduu/23953/2014/01/19/oromo-studies-associations-osas-letter-to-u-s-secretary-of-state-on-the-killings-of-59-and-wounding-of-42-oromos-in-eastern-oromia-by-ethiopian-trained-liyu-police/#.Uts92fi_TfU.facebook

Liyu Police is Ethiopia’s (TPLF’s) style of  Janjaweed to conduct genocide against the Oromo people.

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/1003597/Janjaweed

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Death Squad: The Dynamics of Ethiopian State Terror in Oromia December 2, 2013

Posted by OromianEconomist in Colonizing Structure, Economics: Development Theory and Policy applications, Human Rights, Human Traffickings, Uncategorized.
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3 comments

282548_518782501479783_163682395_n (1)

JEL: D2, D6

Death Squad: The Dynamics of  State Terror in Oromia

State terror is described as a politically motivated violence,  transgression, repression, torture and   murder aimed at citizens by authoritarian governments.  Jeffrey A. Sluka (2000, p.3) has eloquently defined as:

“State terror refers to the use or the threat of violence  by the state  or its agents  or supporters , particularly  against civilian individuals  and populations, as a means  of political intimidation and control (i.e., a means of repression).”Overwhelming empirical evidence demonstrates state violence has been  standard  in Abyssinian empire and occupied Oromia in particular.

Researchers have documented that in the end of 19th century alone 5 million Oromos were victims of Abyssinian mass killings. Prominent political leaders, cultural figures, artists, writers and enterpreueners have been murdered. The Oromo sport heroes like Ababba Biqila (during Haile Selassie regime) and Mammo Walde (by Melese regime)  were murdered. Who can forget the cold blood murder  of singer Ebbisa Adunya by Meles regime killing squad? Who can forget the murder of engineer Tasfahun Camadaa by the same tyrannic state?

Abyssinian rulers has been engaged in state terrorism to maintain the status quo and eliminate the courage and  voice for change. Hence, the voice against  subjugation  has been labelled as terrorism. At present terrorism is a new ideology.

The Oromo society  under  the Abyssinian system has been  regimented by force, fear and intimidiation.  There is no recourse to justice. There is no  rule of law. The media is  wholly controlled  by the government, it  served to  regulate all intellectual, cultural and political activity, and at the same time, to defame the critics and opponents of the ruling regime. There is little room for creative work; the function of art has to be entirely political, the function of a writer  no other than that of a partisan. Freedom of Speech, of press, and of  association has been  systematically curbed. Terror has been  employed to enforce obedience. The secret police subjected the dissidents to unscrupulous intimidation and tortures in order to elicit confessions from them. The government is not only annihilated dissidents but also suppressed the opposition within its ruling party. The ruling clique systematically purged the so called anti-peace and narrow nationalists from its rank and file. The Agazi and Liyu Police are conducting systematic mass genocidal killings. Recent research conducted indicates that 0ver 87% of the political prisoners by Ethiopia are Oromo nationals.

https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B-aJwZDI00JQb2RvZmV4Mm5Iamc/edit?pli=1

Reality and Vision: The Way Out

Leo Tolstoy in his masterpiece and one of the greatest novels in any language on the earth, War and Peace put forward the following compelling historical assertions:

‘All historians agree that the external activity of states and nations in their conflicts with one another is expressed in wars and that as a direct result of greater or less success in war the political strength of states and nations increases or decreases. Strange as may be the historical account of how some king or emperor, having quarrelled with another, collects an army, fights his enemy’s army, gains a victory by killing three, five , or ten thousand men, and subjugates a kingdom and an entire nation of several millions, all the facts of history (as far as we know it) confirm  the truth of  the statement  that the greater or lesser success of one army against  another is the cause, or at least an essential indication, of an increase or decrease in the strength of  a nation – should obliged that whole nation to submit. An army gains a victory, and at once the rights of the conquering nation have increased to the detriment of the defeated. An army has suffered defeat, and at once a people loses its rights in proportion to the severity of the reverse, and if its army suffers a complete defeat the nation is quite subjugated.’

Tolstoy’s logical insight and historical depiction of conquer and conquest well describes the grim realities and experiences of Abyssinian and Oromian saga of 19th and 20th century and also of the present day. As a result of  the defeat of the Oromian defence, Oromia has lost its rights and the power of Abyssinia stretched over Oromia to the extent of the destruction of  the independent existence of Oromia and its capital Finfinnee.

As a result, the people of Oromia become dehumanised, the conquered and  the colonised  subject of  Abyssinian oppressors. The consequences of this tragedy in development studies are what Wilber (1988) calls ‘convoluted history and convoluted development.’ This can succinctly and elegantly depicted through the  Paulo Freire’s (1988) terminology of  educational process also known in his world view of the development process of the oppressed as the pedagogy of the oppressed. Development in this framework taken as  the recitation, in human history, of the progressive  freeing of peoples and nations  from the domination of nature, peoples and other nations.  Accordingly, in terms of Wilber (1988): ‘Development becomes the means, not the end, for the end is to enhance what people value. Development or growth is desirable  only if it is  consistence with people’s  deepest values.’  Development cum liberation is a means to overcome oppressive and exploitative forces of all kinds. In order to achieve those ‘deepest values’, people who are the subject of the development process have to able to hold these essential key and locus of power of this very process and their density. In the context of Oromia, the lack of  holding this essential key kept the country and the people in the present grim nature development process,  the underdevelopment or low level development trap.

In Tolstoy’s 19th century trajectory,   Russia had to liberate itself from Napoleon (France). In the Trajectory of  pedagogy of the oppressed, Freire (1988) : ‘The oppressed, having internalised the image of the oppressor and adopted his guidelines, are fearful of freedom. Freedom would require them to eject this image  and replace it with autonomy and responsibility. Freedom is to be  acquired by struggle, not by gift.  It must be pursued constantly and responsibly. Freedom is not an ideal located outside of man; nor is it an ideal which becomes myth.  It is rather indispensable condition for the quest for human completion.’ From both writers, in their evocative  delineations of human experiences,  we come to understand that the compelling realities of nations like Oromia and its people that they have to empower themselves and do their best to  earn their intimate values.

  The Critical Minimum Effort: What Role for Oromummaa?

Oromian Freedom Function

Bilisummaa  (Freedom) is  a positive function of  Qabsoo (Struggle)  and Tokummaa Oromo (Oromo Unity) (T) and the Spirit of Oromummaa ( here in after the O factor). These three variables together form the minimum critical efforts (MCE) for Bilisummaa. They are not just mere positive factors. Rather they are real causations.

B=  f(Q,T,O)

Garbummaa (Subjugation cum slavery), the inverse function of bilisummaa  is the positive function of  Abyssinian occupation (A), Neo Gobanaa’s factor (N factor) and Lack of Oromo unity(L) and  Unoromummaa (U) (lack of the Spirit of Oromummaa). These three variables (ANL) together form the primary factors or causations  of Garbummaa.

G= f(A, N, L, U)

Garubummaa (G)  is the negation of  Bilisummaa (B) and vice versa.  The N factor is the negative of the O factor and vice versa.

http://www.unpo.org/article/13167#.TmlG41taQqc.facebook

http://www.gadaa.com/culture.html

http://ayyaantuu.com/world/testimonies-of-genocide-between-1868-and-1900-five-million-oromo-were-killed-in-ethiopia/

http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/wayyaaneen-oromotaa-lafa-irraa-duguguun-itti-fufee-jira/

Interview with Oromo farmer who was uprooted by TPLF instigated conflict beween Oromos and Ogadenians

‘Waraannii naannoo Soomalii, Oromoo daangaa Soomaletti dhihaattu ammaas weeyrare, namni kumaan lakkaawamu
balaa haarayaaf Saaxilaman. Gabaasaan Mayyu (ona Anniyyaa) irraa nu dhaqqabe akka mirkaneeysutti. Waraannii dhaabbataan
naannoo Soomalii kan Ogaaden fii loltoonni Liyyuu Polis kan Ogaaden keeysatti ummata shoorarkeeysuun beekkame, daangaa naannoo Oromiyaa cabseee, lafa Oromoo Anniyyaa, Mayyuu Muluqee humnaan dhuunfate. Akka gabaasaa tanaatti, torbaan dabre guyyaa
Salaasaa, tuutni loltoota Somalee lamaanuu harka tokko tahanii Oromoorratti waliin bobbahanii jiraattoota Oromoo kanneen naannoo Mayyuuqubatan balaa guddaa irraan gahanii jiran. Gaafa dura humna waraanaatiin dhufanii Oromiyaa dhunfatan, Wayyaaneen Ummata
Oromoo kan amma wayyaba tahe saba xiqqatti deebisuun nidandayama yaada ja’u Mallas dubbatee ture. Sagantaa dabaa, tan ummata Oromoo xiqqeeysuufii lafa isaa dhiphisuu kana hojiirra oolchuuf Wayyaneen, ollaalee Oromiyaa gara hundaan hidhachiiftee Oromoorratti bobbaasaa jirti. Humni Liyyuu Poolis, humna wayyaaneen jaartee hidhachiifte tahuun hubatamaadha. Tarkaanfiin Liyyuu Poolis fii humna waraana Ogaaden kan amma Mayyutti bobbahee kuni Oromoo lafa isarraa buqqisani saba biraa qubsiisuuf sagantaa lafa kaayyame dalagatti
hiikuuf duula walirraa hin cinne tahee jira. Akka kanaan baatii ( ji’a ) jahan dabre baha Oromiyaa kutaa Harar, Oromoota Anniyya, Oromoo Jaarsoo tiifii Oromoo naannoo Mi’eeysoo qubatan lafa isaaniirraa buqqiftee Ogaadenootaafii Issaaf kennanii ummatoota Oromoo fii Soomalee jiddutti xifaa uumani jiran. Baatii April tana keysa, lafa Anniyyaa ona Mayyuu irratti duulli gara Ogaadeniin baname Oromoo kumaatamaan lafa isaa, Mayyurraa buqqisee jira. Oromoon meeshaa,humna waranaatiifii lojistikii (logistics) akka isaanii waan hin qabneef lola itti baname dura dhaabbatuu hin dadeenye. Warri Oromoo Anniyyaa, Jaarsoofii Mieeysoon lolaa jiru kun eenyu faa? 1, Waraana
mootummaa naannoo Soomalii fii,2, waraana addaa ka liyuu police ja’amu, ka wayyaaneen akeeka ykn dalagaa tanaaf qopheeyfatte. Mayyu lafa jidduu Cululiifii laggeen Ereriifii Gobeelle jiddutti argamti. Lafti Mayyu ja’amtu tun hedduu guddoodha. Dheerinni isii kaabaa kibbatti km 350 ni caalti, baharraa dhihatti KM 180 ni caalti. Lola haaraya kanaan Qabeenyi Anniyyarraa a’ame (saamame); Loon 475, Gaala 25 fii Harree 15. Ummanni Oromoo Anniyyaa kan ona isaarraa buqqa’ee Huusetti walitti qabamee jiru 500,000 ni gayan ja’ama. Namoonni taniis ni jira. Lafa qonnaa kani duraan qabaniifii oomisha isaanii akkasumatti dhiisanii biraa baqatan. Ummanni Oromoo qawwee gayaa
hin qaban. Bakka heddutti mootummaanirraa hiiktee jirt. Hanga xiqqaa harkatti hafeef ammoo rasaasa hin qaban. gara geejjibaatiin
akkasumatti ir’ina guddaa qaban. Yeroo kuni tahu Soomalootaafii Wayyaanota hidhannoo fii rasaasni konkolataa, xayyaaraa fii gaalatti
fe’mee jala deema. Karaa biraatiin yoo Oromoon Anniyya humna waraana Soomalee kan ofirraa dhawan OPDOn hidhannoo ni hiikkachiifti.Torbaan dabre yeroo ummanni Oromoo Anniyyaa humna Soomalee ifirraa ittisuuf tattaafate, OPDOn ajaja Wayyaneetiin amoota Oromoo kudhanirraa qawwee hiikanii turan. Balaan ammaa tuni tan Anniyya, Jaarsoo fii Mi’eeyso qofa xiyyeeffattee miti.
Balaan tuni tan Wayyaneedhaan karoorfamte; balaa duguugiinsa shanyiiti. Kanaafuu Oromoon gara hundaan harka walqabatee, duguuginsa
shannyi kan akka ummataatti isaan aaggate kanarraa if eewaluu qaba.’ Source: Oromo social networks, 7th May 2013

‘According to reports obtained by HRLHA from different sources, this government-backed violence that has been going on in the name of border dispute around the Anniya, Jarso and Miyesso districts between the Oromia and Ogaden regional states has already resulted in the death and/or disappearance of 37 Oromo nationals and the displacement of about 20,000 others. Around 700 different types of cattle and other valuable possessions are also reported to have been looted. The reports indicate that the violence has been backed by two types of armed forces (the Federal Liyou/Special Police and the Ogaden Militia) from the Ogadenis side, while on the side of the Oromos, even those who demonstrated the intentions of defending themselves in the same manner were disarmed, dispossessed and detained. Despite these facts, the reports also dissociate the Ogadeni nationals from the violence mentioning that they have never made claims of ownership of the piece of land in the name of which the government-backed violence has been taking place. HRLHA has also learnt that the said piece of land was demarcated and declared to be part of Oromia Regional State during the 1996 referendum.Among the 37 dead and/or disappeared Oromos Mohamed Kasim and Kadir Ali were local Oromo elders who were killed by the armed government forces in an effort to resolve the violence in a peaceful manner. According to HRLHA informants from Anniya, the hundreds of thousands of displaced Oromos from Rasa Harre, Marfata, Qillee, Mulqee, Dirraa, Waldayyaa, Biqqoo and Libee community fled to the highland areas in Eastern Hararge Zone in search of temporary shelters and other basic needs. The reports add that the displaced Oromos did not get any kind of help from any local, regional, or federal sources. More worrisome is that there are no hints as to when and where the violence against innocent civilians is going to end. Besides, the fact that the governments at various levels turned blind eyes and deaf ears toward such deadly and destructive violence for this all time strengthens the allegations that the federal government and the ruling party are behind the conspiracy of clearing the area suspected of harbouring armed opposition groups of anything on it.The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa urges the Ethiopian Federal Government and the Regional Government of Oromia to discharge their responsibilities of ensuring the safety and stability of citizens by taking immediate actions of interference to bring the violence to end facilitate the return of the displaced Oromos back to their homes. It also calls upon all local, regional and international diplomatic and human rights organizations to impose necessary pressures on both the federal and regional governments so that they refrain from committing irresponsible actions against their own citizens for the purpose of political gains.’ http://humanrightsleague.com/2013/05/ethiopia-loss-of-lives-and-displacement-due-to-border-dispute-in-eastern-ethiopia/

‘Over 20,000 people are displaced and some 37 are dead, as the notorious Liyu police ( TPLF proxy mafia in Somali region) expands its invasion deep into Eastern Hararghe zone. Previously the Liyu Police paramilitary force invaded and ransacked the Moyale town in Borona zone. About 13 Borana zone officials, including the chief administrator Kano Jilo, who complained about 4th Army division watching idly while the town was invaded, were thrown to Kality jail where they still remain. Although technically a branch of the Somali regional government, in reality Liyu police is directly controlled by General Abraha Woldemariam of TPLF’s Eastern Command. The TPLF strategic objective simple, they want to provoke conflict between Somali and Oromo communities in order to make it difficult for OLF and ONLF to function in the region. You might recall The Daily Mail’s report that revealed British government’s planning to give £15 million to fund this mercenary paramilitary group.’ Jawar Mohammed, 8th May 2013. http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=SSFJHxCTbVs
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SSFJHxCTbVs&feature=share
https://soundcloud.com/voa-afaan-oromoo/afaan-oromoo-news-1730-20#play
http://www.gulelepost.com/2013/01/17/the-notorious-somali-region-liyu-police-invades-villages-in-eastern-oromia/
“Tigire ruling elites often misleadingly frame genocidal massacres against Oromo in various parts of Oromia as “inter-communal violence, ethnic conflict, border conflict or water conflict” in order to absolve themselves from responsibility and possible future indictment in local and international courts. For at least two decades, genocidal massacres against Oromo have been framed that way in order to cover-up the deliberate effort by TPLF elites to either reduce Oromo by attrition to a minority population or to destroy them fully so that Tigireans can take over Oromia and its resources. That is their long-term plan. Aslii Oromo, an exiled Oromo political prisoner and torture survivor, cited the late Ethiopian Prime Minster Meles Zanawi ( from Tigray) who said, “We [TPLF or Tigrean elites] will reduce the number of Oromos from 40 million to 4000 without the knowledge of the world.” Yet, many, including some well-meaning Oromos, have hesitated  calling widespread massacres against Oromo a “genocide”, and  comfortably stayed on the human rights violations side of a much protracted problem. Ethnic Tigire elites declared their intent of destroying the Oromo partially or fully and have acted on their declarations. Where they did not declare these intents, they can be inferred from the actions of singling out and massacring and displacing Oromo en masse or selling their lands to land grabbers by the millions of hectares. Even an airhead would understand that no one group will massacre other groups just out of love or to do them some favor by killing them off of their land.  Calling massacres against Oromo “genocide” has been avoided mainly because some people make false strategic calculations and believe that it is enough for the Oromo to claim human rights abuses instead of claiming genocide too. Human rights violations are indicators. There are some who see the talk of genocide as an inflation or overstatement. But, connecting evidence on the ground can show us that massacres in Oromia are  indeed conspicuous acts of  genocide.Let’s just go beyond routine condemnation press releases, which echo the official framing of such massacres as “border conflicts or ethnic clashes etc”, and come to grips with the reality–genocide. The methods are multi-pronged: direct massacre, displacement, landgrab, spread of lethal infectious diseases, starving, withholding services, destroying crops to just list a few.  In the process, it becomes important to see these massacres as part of an ongoing genocide, “the deliberate and systematic destruction, in whole or in part, of an ethnic,racial, religious, or national group”http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/patterns-of-genocidal-massacres-against-oromo-in-oromia-ethiopia/
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=7DWBrtXzOHA
http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=YpW49tnIi3k
http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/oromo-freedom-from-what-and-for-what/
http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/a-nonstop-genocidal-war-waged-against-the-oromo-people-for-more-than-a-century/

“The research and information unit of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) has conducted a study on the allegiance that accounted for some political prisoners to be sentenced or otherwise been unjustly detained. The herewith attached partial list of political prisoners has been collected from prisons of Kaliti, Torhailoch (Military Police Prison), Maikelawi and Kilinto. Almost all prisoners are charged for act of terror, violation of territorial integrity, attempts to overthrow the constitutional order by violent means and being suspected member of OLF or any other organizations. These political prisoners are ranging in age from young high school and University students to elderly civic society leaders. Professionally, they are also diverse – from farmers, businessmen, government employees, political leaders, journalists and etc. The overwhelming portions are Oromos and some are also from different nations and nationalities of Ethiopia. Most of these political prisoners already gave prison service for several years; many of them are tortured and subjected to irreversible mental damages, and some of them were shot to death in the course of time. Since the fall of Transitional Government in 1992, Ethiopian authorities continued to severely restrict basic rights of freedom of expression, association, and assembly. Violation of human rights is a daily record of the regime. Instead of solving the root cause of political conflict, it rather declared war on the Oromo people and its vanguard Organisation, the OLF. Consequently, many thousands of Oromos and other nationals were arbitrarily arrested and detained and remain at risk of torture, ill-treatment and extrajudicial killings. Many of them were executed during peaceful demonstrations due to excessive use of force by police or security agents. The TPLF regime promulgated and adopted the restrictive Anti-Terrorism Proclamation in 2009. This regime, which from its very initial, was known for its massive human rights violations is currently using this law to justify all atrocities it conducted. In this attempt to hood wink opinions of the international community, the EPRDF regime is still trying to make others believe that the current problem of the empire is act of terror but not deep rooted political conflict of domination. The OLF vehemently opposes any forms of terrorism and reject the use of terrorism neither as a form of struggle nor also for suppression of dissidents by states. Thus, we denounce the Ethiopian state terrorism that is used to crush any form of struggle and decent. OLF is cognizant of, and appreciate the concern of various human rights advocating organizations and some democratic governments that expressed their concerns about Anti-Terrorism, Press and Civic society laws of Ethiopia on various international forums. In a country like Ethiopia where the government structure is monopolized by a single ethnic group, legalizing the abuse of the universal human rights is a way that leads for the establishment of a totalitarian system which is more sustaining than a simple personal dictatorship. Therefore, OLF alarms that the dangerous political development sustaining over Ethiopia demands more than just a concern but towards a proactive action of the international communities and UN member states. We denounce legalized form of state terrorism and call up on the international community to exert diplomatic pressure on Ethiopian government to release all political prisoners unconditionally and repeal these brutal and repressive laws.”

http://qeerroo.org/2013/12/01/the-legacy-of-violence-state-terrorism-of-tplf-led-ethiopian-government-using-anti-terror-law-on-political-dissident-must-end/

‘The study confirms that there is clear nexus between authoritarian rule,
man-made famines, and genocide in Ethiopia.’

http://www.codesria.org/IMG/pdf/Mekuria_Bulcha.pdf

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