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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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Somalia: Will the Real Farmaajo Please Stand Up? June 2, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Ethiopian Empire, Ethnic Cleansing, Somalia.
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The recent visit by newly-elected President of Somalia Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed ‘Farmaajo’ to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, can be considered as unusual, not because the relations between the two countries soured in the aftermath of his election, but because he subtly campaigned for an anti-Ethiopian slogan on the eve of the 8 February presidential elections in Mogadishu. His supporters and many other Somalis had anticipated that Farmaajo would delay an early political engagement with the current Ethiopian regime led by the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF)/The Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). Farmaajo’s visit culminated in a press conference held together with the Ethiopian Prime Minister HailemariamDesalegn.

When one combines the discursive analysis with a psychosomatic assessment on the video clip of the press conference in Addis Ababa, it can be observed from the faces of the once overconfident TPLF/EPRDF policy-makers that they appear to be anxious about another – in addition to Eritrea, or even South Sudan or the Sudan – critical political façade from Mogadishu. This does not mean that they are unaware that Mogadishu government remains utterly toothless, but a small amount of criticism towards their behaviour and practices in the Horn in general and Somalia in particular stemmingfrom the new team in the Villa Somalia would add an insult to theinjury. Therefore, the approach from which the TPLF/EPRDF policy-makers could benefit most at this time is through appeasing Farmaajo and making him sleep with friendly but forged overdose diplomatic gesture.The speeches made in the news conference indicated that the TPLF/EPRDF regime in Ethiopia were not only sceptical about the new development in Mogadishu, but they were wary about what Farmaajo would put on the table. However, upon assessing him closely, they seem to have found out that he is not the man they feared.

The TPLF/EPRDF policy-makers were expecting Ethiopia to be the first country to which Farmaajo was to travel following his election. Instead, Addis Ababa became the seventh after Riyadh, Nairobi, Abu Dhabi, Djibouti, Aman and Ankara, in the capital cities that he visited thus far. The wide public support the Somali public welcomed Farmaajo’s election, which was itself a reaction towards the detested regime of Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud, has revealed to the TPLF/EPRDF policy-makers that they could not dictate, as they had done with the corrupt regime of Hassan Sheikh, with their own terms what they need from Somalia. Hence the importance to find a new route out of the anxiety in the TPLF/EPRDF inner circle generated by the Farmaajo’s unexpected election. I still recall vividlyafter the previous president Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud went to Jigjiga unannounced in early August last year, I met Farmaajo, sipping a tea at Sarova Panafric Hotel in one cool Nairobi afternoon. After reading to him my take on the visit from my mobile phone, I looked Farmaajo and saw his reaction was mild.

Influential Somali opinion makers have every reason to be a bit sceptical of any dealings with Ethiopia, but one has todraw to their attention to the fact that there is no such an ‘Ethiopia’ at the moment. The TPLF/EPRDF regime is currently in a weakposition, insofar as it suffers from internal power struggles exacerbated by the increasing Oromo and Amhara dissents. Historically, for so long, the Ethiopian political order hasbeen dependent for existence and survival on the character of a powerful ruler. Upon the death of the former Tigray rebel leader Meles Zenawi, the TPLF/EPRDF central committee failed to come up with a powerful successor at par with the deceased leader from the Tigray political actors within the ruling party. No need to note that HailemariamDesalegn is another DaherRayaale (the former accidental Somaliland president); Desalegnwas chosen to create a balance between the two Tigray groups vying for power tiresomely during the post-Zenawi period. Be that as it may, Ethiopia is still under the state of emergency that was declared in October last year as a result of riots instigated by the Master Plan project which attempted to displace a significant number of Oromos from their farming lands on the outskirts of Addis Ababa. The Oromo uprising, supported by Amhara unrest, created a confusion and chaos within the TPLF/EPRDF, leading to accusations and counter-accusations as reported by the suppressed print media.

Tourists and travellers are still cautioned not to venture into Amhara and Oromo regions unless that is necessary. The only region the TPLF/EPRDF authorities effectively (remote)-controls from Addis Ababa is the Somali region which, because of the divisive clan-based politics, they were able dividing the Somalis along clan, even sub-clan or sub-subclan lines in order to fish out from their persistent power and resource contestation. Consequently, the Somali region is next to Tigray region, which many (but not all) are obedient to the TPLF/EPRDF regime due to ethnic affiliation with the TPLF. This does not imply that people in the Somali region support the regime; they are on the contrary waiting for a momentum to articulate their own self-determination as was nearly achieved but missed in late 1994. In Addis Ababa last year, when I asked about the appalling human rights situation in the Somali region, several TPLF/EPRDF regime advisers told me they would kick out the Somali region’s monocratic president Abdi Mohamed Omar, known as ‘Abdi Ileey’, but they expressed a fear that his replacement may open a Pandora’s box. This is a clear testimony that, insofar as they keep a tight grip on the region, they would be fine with the open-ended oppression. However, they could not apply this harsh policy to the Amhara or Oromo regions where people are more united and politically well-informed in the Ethiopian politics than the pastoralist clanically-divided (mostly) nomadic Somalis in the region. When I visited Jigjiga in April last year, I felt amused that the peculiar yet parochial question was: which sub-clan is larger than that or this to cut the larger cake from the regional state?.

Reflecting on these empirical localised internal political nuances, the Somali-Ethiopian relations in the broader geopolitics or biopolitics warranta very close but critical re-reading to envisage Addis Ababa’s future manoeuvres in Somalia. Unlike foreign policies of the successive Somalia regimes, which have often been inconsistent, incoherent, incomprehensive and unclear, the TPLF/EPRDF foreign policy changes as the need emerge. It comes as no surprise that both political (and military) culture of the TPLF/EPRDF draws from a reformed rational political calculation that solicits to buy a brief interval in every time of transition. It seems on the surface that this philosophy is based on ‘do this now, but do the other with the right time’.

Farmaajo and his team do not seem to understand the fragile situation of the Ethiopian regime, let alone what is going on the inner circle or the behind-the-scenes. Most strikingly, they appear unable to read the subtle ways the history is profoundly manipulated to construct or craft something meaningful out of it. For instance, one wonders why Farmaajo’s team did not raise their concerns when the TPLF/EPRDF cadres put on his back during the press conference this clear message: ‘Welcome to Ethiopia, the Land of Origins’, which literally means ‘welcome to your land of origins’. From the Ethiopian ‘highlander’ historical point of view, Somalis are considered as were part and parcel of the Ethiopian Empire through the ages. One could recall Emperor Haile Selassie’s famous speech in QabriDaharre in 1956, in which he boldly stated to his audience that Somalis and Ethiopians are the same, since ‘we drank water drawn from the same river’. The Ethiopian Herald published at the time some Somali elders kissing his hand with scornful manner unaccustomed to then proud Somalis. Several highlander Ethiopian historians and other Ethiopianists stick to this day to the notion that Somalis were once part of Ethiopian Empire, which is a false premise that can be counter-checked with available archaeological evidence and historical findings that Afar, Oromo, Saho, Somali and other lowland ethnic communities in the Horn of Africa had been the founders and defenders of the Adal and Ujuuraan sultanates well before the Abyssinian intrusion in 1887.

Mohamed Haji Ingiriis

Mohamed Haji Ingiriis a Somali scholar studying Somali history at the University of Oxford. He can be reached at: ingiriis@yahoo.com

UNPO: A report on human rights in Ethiopia, shedding light on the worrying situation of the Oromo and Ogadeni peoples. March 16, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests.
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Those living in the Ogaden and Oromia regions are most vulnerable to the State-sponsored persecution. Protests in Oromia were violently repressed by the government since they started in April 2014, and continue to be. “Jail Ogaden” holds thousands of prisoners of conscience in overcrowding conditions and unhygienic facilities. Rape is systematically used as a weapon by the government and local polices such as the Liyu Police, combined with other forms of torture. And those are just a handful of examples. UNPO Report, Human Rights in Ethiopia


UNPO Releases Report on Human Rights in Ethiopia

Photo courtesy of Andrew Heavens @Flickr

UNPO has released a report on human rights in Ethiopia, shedding light on the worrying situation of the Oromo and Ogadeni peoples. While international partners tend to hail Ethiopia as an African democratic role model and a beacon of stability and hope in an otherwise troubled region, the fundamental rights of the country’s unrepresented continue to be violated on a daily basis. With the support of major international donors such as the European Union, Addis Ababa increasingly prioritises strong economic growth, development and a high degree of enforced political stability at the expense of human rights and civil liberties.

Ethiopia’s economy has been growing steadily in recent years, boasting a small emerging middle class and receiving continuously-increasing foreign investment. The country is seen as a key ally by Western powers in the fight against terrorism and the regulation of international migration. Meanwhile, Ethiopia remains one of the world’s poorest countries, with a third of the population living in abject poverty and the country’s regime is also one of the African continent’s most authoritarian in character, cracking down mercilessly on those who voice dissent.

Those living in the Ogaden and Oromia regions are most vulnerable to the State-sponsored persecution. Protests in Oromia were violently repressed by the government since they started in April 2014, and continue to be. “Jail Ogaden” holds thousands of prisoners of conscience in overcrowding conditions and unhygienic facilities. Rape is systematically used as a weapon by the government and local polices such as the Liyu Police, combined with other forms of torture. And those are just a handful of examples.

As of March 2017, 300 people have died of hunger and cholera in the Ogaden region, because of the restrictions imposed by the Ethiopian government. Limitations on freedom of movement bars access to healthcare facilities and the trade embargo causes critical food shortages. UNPO calls on the international community to play its role in safeguarding human rights by putting an end to the financial flows fueling the Ethiopian State’s oppression and intimidation of the most vulnerable among its population.

To view and download the report, please click hereUNPO Report, Human Rights in Ethiopia

Oromo-Somali Solidarity Forum Press Release March 16, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests.
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Oromo-Somali Solidarity Forum Press Release
Date: 16th of March, 2017    Ref: OSSF/01/17


For immediate release


Since November 2016, i.e., for the last five months, the murderous Liyu Police forces, commanded by the President of the Somali Regional State, have been undertaking border raids and attacks against civilians in the Oromia region, in the process killing and displacing many people. The attack is launched on five Oromia zones and 14 districts bordering the Somali region. At least 200 civilians have been killed and many others injured in the attacks according to reports. These senseless attacks were ordered by the TPLF as part of its strategy to weaken the popular uprising underway in Oromia against the minority ruling clique. TPLF has been trying to portray the conflict it maneuvered between the brotherly Somali and Oromo peoples as a dispute between the two regions over the ownership of border towns and localities, a dispute that has been settled through public referenda in 2005/6. The two neighboring ethnic groups have co-existed peacefully for centuries and have a culture of resolving disputes through established traditional conflict resolution mechanisms. Without the sinister hands of the TPLF, this conflict would not have even started. TPLF is hiding in plain sight and should understand that such mischief will not absolve it from the crimes it continues to commit against both the Oromo and Somali people.

The atrocities committed by the Liyu Police did not start with defenseless Oromos. These merchants of death and destruction have been terrorizing their own Somali people for the last ten years at the behest of their TPLF masters. They have committed numerous grave human right violations inside the Somali region and even as far beyond as Somalia with gruesome executions, rape, and burning of villages being their distinctive trademarks.

We at the Oromo-Somali Solidarity Forum hereby condemn this TPLF-engineered reckless conflict which led to the bloodshed of our brotherly peoples. We urge the brotherly Somali and Oromo peoples to stand in solidarity and deny the TPLF the pleasure of achieving the division and animosity it aspires to sow between our people. The ongoing conflict is not a war between Oromos and Somalis. It is a proxy war orchestrated by the TPLF against Oromos through the Liyu Police which is an auxiliary instrument of repression by the desperate minority regime. United, we will overcome TPLF’s 26 years of oppression and mayhem.

Victory to the oppressed Oromo and Somali people!

With profound regards!
Oromo-Somali Solidarity Forum

Addressed to: All Ethiopians, Oromos, Somalis and the international press

Representative signatories:
 Geresu Tufa
 Mohamed Hassan
 Najat Hamza
 Nagessa Oddo Dube
 Jemal-Dirie Kalif
 Jawar Mohammed
 Abdullahi Hussein
 Dahabe M. Abdella
 Tibebu Sime
 Hadi Luqman
 Girma Gutema
 Solomon Ungashe
 Tsegaye Ararsa
 Gadissa Abrahim
 Eda’o Dawano
 Latu Bushan
 Aman Maldewo
 Endiris Negewo

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

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests.
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Odaa OromooOromianEconomist

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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


 

The Daily Vox: What you need to know about the situation in Ethiopia November 1, 2016

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What you need to know about the situation in Ethiopia


Since October 6th, Ethiopia has been in a nationwide state of emergency. To help understand the situation, the Daily Vox spoke to members of the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) – vice chairperson Muhamad Ismail Omar, and chairman of the National Intelligence Bureau, Hassan Muhammad Moalin.

What’s up with this crisis in Ethiopia?

Well, the government has recently declared a state of emergency and are going full authoritarian-dictator on their citizens for the anti-government protests that started November last year. It’s pretty lit – but not in a good way. Since the start of the protests, the death toll is said to be over 500, and the military is on a national crackdown – soldiers have even been pulled out from Somalia and are deployed in high-tension areas.

Beyond that, the government has implemented strict restrictions and banned a number of activities in the country which undermine basic human rights. Among the list of activities that have been banned:

  • citizens are not allowed to post on social media,
  • there is no free assembly,
  • crossing one’s wrists in political gestures,
  • the travel of diplomats more than 40km out of the capital, and
  • watching foreign-based television stations, Ethiopia Satellite Television and Oromia Media Network – which are being referred to as “terrorist” media by the state.

But why are Ethiopians protesting in the first place?

It started when the current regime started seizing land from the ancestral home of the Oromo people for a “development” project to expand Ethiopia’s capital city, Addis Ababa – ominously referred to as “the master plan”. After over 100 people died protesting this land grabbing, things snowballed into a nationwide anti-government uprising based on a number of issues relating to ethnic tensions, social inequality, the state’s repression and lasting political grudges for historic injustices.

To understand the dynamics at play then, we need to go back a bit.

Since before its national borders were drawn, the area now known as Ethiopia was always divided regionally along ethnolinguistic lines.

Image via Wkipedia https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/0/05/Ethiopia_regions_english.png

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Those from the northern highland region – the Amhara people and Tigrayans – have enjoyed occupying positions of power and privilege. However, the Oromo, for example, who make up the majority population in modern-day Ethiopia, are severely underrepresented in terms of political, economic and social power. Another region worthwhile noting is the Ogaden region which was originally part of Somalia, and thus most its inhabitants are ethnically Somali – some from the Ogaden region have been militantly pushing for self-determination.

“Historically what we call Ethiopia was called Abyssinia. The Abyssinian highland and the Abyssinian people, ancestors to the Amhara and Tigrayan people, dominated other oppressed peoples. So actually I would say they have occupied this land – the land of the Oromos have been occupied by the Abyssinians,” said Omar.

Ethiopia has a long history of being ruled by minorities. Until 1991, it was the Amhara people in power under the rule of the Communist Derg government, led by Mengistu Haile Mariam. Since his overthrow, led by the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front, Ethiopia has been ruled by the coalition party, Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). This is the ruling party which the current protests are targeting – partly because the EPRDF is made up predominantly by Tigrayan people, but mostly because the regime is considered entirely oppressive. So there’s a long history of Ethiopian ethnic tension, as well as struggle against minority rule.

“So regardless of the master plan, even in the Amhara region they are fighting. Not only the Oromos, who people are saying to mislead the international community that they are uprising because of the masterplan, the master plan is only the most recent of the oppression which is centuries-old,” said Moalin.

Then what are people demanding in the protests?

It’s not clear at this point, since there is no strict sense of unity across the various regions that are uprising.

“The Amharas, they are fighting for democracy, whereas we are fighting for self-determination of the Ogaden region. Unless these rights have been obtained, the uprising which has paralysed the economy, and which has paralysed the unity of the Ethiopian people, [will continue]. The Ethiopian people are not united, the Oromo are fighting on their own, as are other regions,” said Omar.

What’s the way forward for the Ethiopian people then? Is there a need for international intervention?

Well, hopefully it doesn’t come to that. Despite the region’s disunity across historically drawn ethnic and regional lines, the current government has provided a common enemy for the people of Ethiopia.

“Yet there is hope for we do have one common aim, an enemy to overthrow and get rid of this despotic regime and its tyranny. We have now been forced to understand each other. We are now aware of each other and have created the People’s Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PFD). This is an alliance that incorporates most of the groupings and created an umbrella organisation to reinforce each other economically politically – even media wise we have to collaborate,” said Omar.


 

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.


 

The Oakland Institute: Miracle or mirage? Manufacturing hunger and poverty in Ethiopia September 27, 2016

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Miracle or mirage? manufacturing hunger and poverty in Ethiopia


Oakland Institute, 27 September 2016

 


As months of protest and civil unrest hurl Ethiopia into a severe political crisis, a new report from the Oakland Institute debunks the myth that the country is the new “African Lion.” Miracle or Mirage? Manufacturing Hunger and Poverty in Ethiopia exposes how authoritarian development schemes have perpetuated cycles of poverty, food insecurity, and marginalized the country’s most vulnerable citizens.

A key government objective is to make Ethiopia one of the largest sugar producers in the world. Several sugar expansion plans are underway, including the colossal Kuraz Project in the Lower Omo Valley, which will include up to five sugar factories and 150,000 hectares of sugarcane plantations that rely on Gibe III Dam for irrigation. Studies show that Gibe III could reduce the Omo River flow by as much as 70 percent, threatening the livelihoods of 200,000 Ethiopians and 300,000 Kenyans who depend on the downstream water flow for herding, fishing, and flood-recession agriculture.

Miracle or Mirage? offers lessons from the deadly impact of sugar and cotton plantations in the Awash Valley in the Afar Region, established in the 1950s. The projects drastically reduced land and water availability for people and cattle, undermined food security, destroyed key drought coping mechanisms, and stirred up violent conflicts between different groups over the remaining resources. The establishment of plantations was a critical factor in the 1972-1973 famine, resulting in the deaths of nearly 200,000 Afar people. These findings raise serious questions about the government’s logic behind sugar expansion, with $11.2 billion to be invested by 2020, and much more for irrigation schemes and dams – Gibe III alone cost Ethiopia $1.8 billion.

Using quantitative evidence, the report also details how plantations established in the Awash Valley have been far less profitable than pastoralist livestock production, while carrying massive environmental costs including the depletion of vital water resources.

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Grand #OromoProtests Global Solidarity Rally Held in Johannesburg South Africa, 18 August 2016 August 18, 2016

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#OromoProtests #AmharaProtests #OgadeniaProtests joint global solidarity rally in Johannesburg, South Africa.


Grand #OromoProtests Global solidarity joint Ethiopians Rally Held in South Africa on 18 August 2016 p2

 

Grand #OromoProtests Global solidarity joint Ethiopians Rally Held in South Africa on 18 August 2016 p1

 

Grand #OromoProtests Global solidarity joint Ethiopians Rally Held in South Africa on 18 August 2016

 

UNPO Side-Events at UN Human Rights Council Raise Awareness of Gross Human Rights Violations in Ethiopia June 28, 2016

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UNPO Side-Events at UN Human Rights Council Raise Awareness of Gross Human Rights Violations in Ethiopia

UNPO,  24 June 2016


Aiming to raise awareness of the gross human rights violations perpetrated by the Ethiopian government against its own citizens, the Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO), in cooperation with the Nonviolent Radical Party (PRNTT), the Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa and the Ogaden People’s Rights Organization, convened two side-events to the XXXII Regular Session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, on 22 and 23 June 2016, respectively.

On 22 June 2016, a conference entitled ‘Business and Human Rights in Ethiopia: Double-Digit Growth at What Cost?’ looked at the systematic and large-scale violations of human rights committed hand-in-hand by transnational corporations and the Ethiopian government, with particular focus on the Ogaden region.Mr Abdirahman Mahdi, Chairman of the Ogaden People’s Rights Organization (OPRO), provided the audience – comprised of human rights defenders, diplomats, politicians, journalists and academics from all over the world – with an introductory overview of the Ogaden, a region that has recently seen its territory divided into 22 blocks to be then assigned to transnational corporations, with no regard whatsoever to the local inhabitants, who are being forcefully displaced and denied access to their grazing lands. Mr Mahdi reminded the audience that, although the Ethiopian constitution stipulates that the land is owned by the state and the people of Ethiopia, “the Somali people in Ogaden have no say or right in deciding the fate of their land and are never consulted”.

In a region where aid is severely restricted and international NGOs are denied access or operate under direct supervision, “detention, rape, summery execution and torture are rampant”, Mr Mahdi explained. Even the International Committee of the Red Cross has been banned from working in the Ogaden since 2007, while it is allowed in other parts of Ethiopia. Only during the last six months, several civilians in 69 localities were rounded, detained, beaten, looted or killed. On 6 June 2016, 51 people were killed in Jama Dubad, in the Gashamo District On 15 June, more than 400 civilians, relatives of Ogaden diaspora members were detained and tortured in Qabridahar, Dhanaan, Wardheer, Godey and Dhagahbur, after some demonstrations against the regional president had taken place in Australia.

Following Mr Mahdi’s presentation, journalist and director Mr Graham Peebles screened for the first time his recent short documentary “Ogaden: Ethiopia’s Hidden Shame”. The film is based on interviews conducted in Dadaab Refugee camp in Kenya in October 2014 and reveals the state-sponsored terrorism taking place in the Somali Ogaden region of Ethiopia, showing related stories of extreme violence, torture and rape at the hands of the security forces. After the screening of his poignant film, Mr Peebles shared with the audience the experience of shooting and producing the piece. Mr Peebles remarked that, in addition to Ethiopian military and paramilitary being engaged in killings to clear the area for resource exploration, the Ogaden has also been severely affected by drought and famine. “Although the WFP is providing emergency food aid in the Ogaden, the relief programme has been forced to recruit locals who are said to be working for the Ethiopian security services”, he explained. As a result, food aid is increasingly being diverted from WFP warehouses to local agencies, “who reportedly transfer it to the army or government regional administrators, who then divide the food amongst themselves with the purpose of being sold on the black market or given to groups that support the ruling party”.

Scene of the film “Ogaden: Ethiopia’s HIdden Shame’ by Graham Peebles, screened at the UN in Geneva

Followed by a debate, this first conference sought to address the complex relationship between business and human rights in Ethiopia, where the most basic rights of the local population are sacrificed on the altar of major economic interests and so-called ‘development’.

On 23 June 2016, the second side-event, in collaboration the Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA), shifted the focus to the Oromo region of Ethiopia where, in November 2015, national security forces responded to largely peaceful protests with excessive and lethal force. The roundtable was entitled “Violations of Freedom of Assembly and Demonstration: Brutal Crackdown on Peaceful Oromo Protests”.

Mr Garoma Wakessa, Director of the Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa, opened his presentation by offering a comprehensive overview of the situation of the Oromo, who despite being the largest ethinic group, are largely socially and politically marginalized. Mr Wakessa presented the origins of the protests that broke out across Oromia, in 2015, when civilians took to the streets to protest against the so-called ‘Integrated Master Plan’, the central government’s intention to expand Addis Ababa’s municipal boundary into Oromia regional territory. Mr Wakessa emphasized that the demonstrations were mainly led by Oromo students and while the protests started as an opposition to the ‘Master Plan’, they gradually evolved into a wider Oromo movement levelled against the central authorities.

Mr Felix Horne, Ethiopia Researcher for Human Rights Watch, offered with his most recent report,  “‘Such a Brutal Crackdown’: Killings and Arrests in Response to Ethiopia’s Oromo Protests,”,  further details of the Ethiopian government’s use of excessive and unnecessary lethal force and mass arrests, mistreatment in detention, and restrictions on access to information to quash the protest movement. His publication was based on interviews with more than 125 protesters, bystanders and victims of abuse, who documented serious violations of the rights to free expression and peaceful assembly by security forces against protesters and others, between the very beginning of these protests in November 2015 and up until May 2016. Moreover, Mr Horne explained that Ethiopian government’s pervasive restrictions on independent human rights investigations and media have meant that very little information has been coming from affected areas. Since mid-March [2016], the Ethiopian government has restricted access to Facebook and other social media, as well as restricted access to diaspora television stations.

The well-achieved goal of convening two side-events to the XXXII Regular Session of the UN Human Rights Council was to raise awareness of the dangerous misconception that Ethiopia is ‘an African democracy on the make’ and ‘a beacon of stability in an otherwise troubled region’. Both events informed human rights defenders, diplomats, politicians, journalists and academics from all over the world about the dire human rights’ situation in Ethiopia, firstly by shedding a light on the damage caused by large-scale business operations, notably in areas inhabited by ethnic groups who are already being systematically marginalized and suppressed by the central government. Secondly, by looking at how an authoritarian regime uses brutal and lethal force against peaceful protestors, such as the case of Oromia.  The international community clearly has an active role to play in ensuring investigations into the mass atrocities taking place in Ethiopia, to hold perpetrators of crimes responsible and to end the enduring impunity.

——————————————————————————————————————————

Speakers:

Mr Abdirahman Mahdi, Chairman of the Ogaden People’s Rights Organization (OPRO)

Mr Graham Peebles, Journalist and Film Director

Mr Garoma Wakessa, Director of the Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa

Mr Felix Horne, Ethiopia Researcher Human Rights Watch

Side-Event Press-Release: Violations of Freedom of Assembly and Demonstration: Brutal Crackdown on Peaceful Oromo Protests

Side-Event Press-Release: Business and Human Rights in Ethiopia: Double-Digit Growth at What Cost?


http://unpo.org/article/19287

UNPO: Ogaden: Documentary Sheds Light on Ethiopia’s ‘Hidden Shame’ June 26, 2016

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Odaa OromooEthiopia's regime crimes in OgadenOgaden, Ethiopia's hidden shame

 

Ethiopia is often hailed as an African role model and a beacon of stability and hope in an otherwise troubled region. The developmental community is smitten by the country’s alleged progress in areas such as GDP growth, school attendance and provision of public healthcare. As British journalist and filmmaker Graham Peebles points out in his documentary, however, the reality for most of the people in the Ogaden region of Ethiopia is radically different from the sugar-coated image put forth by the Ethiopian government. Scores of Ogadenis flee their home region to escape state-sponsored violence and abuse, while the international community turns a blind eye to their plight.

 

Below is an article published by Dissident Voice:

Ethiopia is regularly cited as an African success story by donor nations; the economy is growing they cry, more children are attending school and health care is improving. Well GDP figures and millennium development statistics reveal only a tiny fraction of the corrupt and violent picture.

What development there is depends, the Oakland Institute relate, on “state force and the denial of human and civil rights”; the country remains 173rd out of 187 countries in the UN Human Development Index and around 40% of the population live below the extremely low poverty line of US-$1.25 a day, – the World Bank worldwide poverty line is $2 a day.

The ruling party, the EPRDF, uses violence and fear to suppress the people and governs in a highly centralised manner. Human rights are ignored and a methodology of murder, false imprisonment, torture and rape is followed.

The ethnic Somali population of the Ogaden, in the southeast part of the country, has been the victim of extreme government brutality since 1992. It is a familiar story of a region with a strong identity seeking autonomy from central government, and the regime denying them that democratic right.

In 2013 and again in 2014 I visited Dadaab refugee camp in Kenya and met a number of people who had fled state persecution in the Ogaden. Men and women told of false imprisonment, murder and torture. All the women I spoke with relayed accounts of multiple rape, and sexual abuse; defected military men confessed to carrying out such appalling crimes.

We filmed the meetings and put together a short documentary, Ogaden: Ethiopia’s Hidden Shame. Most people have never heard of the region and know nothing of what is happening there.

The purpose of the film is to raise awareness, of what human rights groups describe as a genocidal campaign, and to put pressure on the primary donors – America, Britain and the European Union. Countries that collectively give around half of Ethiopia’s federal budget in various aid packages, and whose neglect and indifference amounts to complicity.

The film records the distressing stories of three extraordinary young women, Anab, Maryama and Fatuma.


http://unpo.org/article/19281

Ethiopian Army Wantonly Massacres 51 Civilians in Ogaden June 9, 2016

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Odaa OromooONLF

Namoonni 51 ol Ogaden keessattii wayyaaneen ajjesamuuni gabaafame. Kan ajjeefamani keessa baayyeen dubartoota fi daa’imman ta’uun beekame.


(ONLF, 8 June 2016) — The Ethiopian Army wantonly massacred 51 civilians in Jama’ Dubad village near Gashamo town on June 5, 2016. The army indiscriminately opened fire on unarmed civilians in the village centre,  shooting everybody in sight, not sparing women, children or the elderly. After the army started the massacre, many villagers run to the local mosque, hoping that they may be spared there. However, the Ethiopian army followed them there, shooting and killing them all. Then, the army torched the village,  destroying all property, food and the water supplies of the village.

Many wounded civilians who managed to run away to the fields, are scattered and hiding in the fields. Some of the villages and many children are still unaccounted for. In addition,  the Ethiopian army has abducted more than ten elders whose whereabouts are still unknown. The Ethiopian army has sent reinforcements and are currently occuppying  villages along the border. This is an indication that the army intends to commit more massacres in order to create fear and stem any reaction from the local communities.

Just two months ago, the Ethiopian army massacred civilians in Dhaacdheer and Gaxandhaale villages near Galadi town in Wardheer region, killing scores of civilians. In Febraury 2016, the Ethiopian army and the  Liyu Police militia destroyed Lababar village near Shilabo, killing more than 300 civilains and destroying the whole community in order to clear areas near the Jeexdin (Calub) Gas fields.  In  similar aggression the Ethiopian army killed many civilians near Bur-Ukur,  Ferfer, Beledwayne and Hudur areas at the end of last year.

After committing crimes intended to extinguish the spirit and the humanity in Ogaden, Oromia and  all communities in Ethiopia, the regime is now increasingly targeting other peoples along its borders and other neighbouring countries, specially those along the Somalia and Kenyan borders.

The Ogaden National Liberation Front categorically condemns the action of the Ethiopian regime and calls upon all peoples and parties in the Horn of Africa and the international community to condemn this heinous act  and come to the aid of the affected innocent civilians.

Issued by

Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF)

N.E. Africa:Peoples’ Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD) Categorically Condemns the Past and Ongoing Massacre of Unarmed Civilians by TPLF/EPRDF’s Ethiopian Government May 31, 2016

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Odaa OromooPAFD NEWSPAFD nations flagsPAFD, the genuinely-multinational coalition for freedom and democracy in Ethiopia, covers greater than 70% of area in Ethiopia


Press Release on the occasion of 14th Commemorative anniversary of Sidama Loqqee Massacre and the Massacre of the other civilians.

May 30, 2016, London


The repeated massacres and genocides of past 25 years that the TPLF’s barbaric regime has committed on unarmed civilians of all regions-and the ongoing indiscriminate massacres it is committing now are likely to continue unabated for a long time if the peoples in Ethiopia remain fragmented, divided and refuse to take the responsibility of confronting and stopping this criminal regime. Failure to do so has already unquestionably contributed to the longevity of the regime.

We, the PAFD member organizations envisage a dynamic and flexible approach with potential of accommodating the interests of all stakeholders without any differences and without actually dictating our own agendas for all the peoples in Ethiopia. This will allow all to move forward in unison in their strides towards justice, democracy and genuine self-determination, which is practically denied by the current regime. Moreover, we strongly believe that this is the only way forward to stop the ongoing genocide, to restore the rule of law, human dignity and pride and democratic order in Ethiopia.

To be able to do so, all the peoples in Ethiopia and their respective organizations must put their differences aside and unite strategically in order to end the suffering of all perpetrated by the TPLF led EPRDF’s brutal regime.

Today’s Sidama Loqqee massacre 14th commemorative anniversary isn’t unique to Sidama nation and isn’t a past history. It has been committed on tens of thousands of civilians in Ethiopia from Amhara, Afar, Benshagul, Hadya, Kambata, Ogaden Somali, Omo, Oromia, Sidama, Shakicho and the rest of regions of Ethiopia. And it is ongoing in Oromia, Ogadenia, Gambella, Konso, Omo Valley and the rest of regional, Zone and district levels.

Unconditionally condemning the past and ongoing genocides and massacres, the PAFD calls upon all organizations and peoples in Ethiopia to be united, move forward and stop the regime brutalizing them all.

PAFD also urges the international and regional communities to stand on the side of the people in order to stop the ongoing blatant human rights violations and hold the perpetrators into account both locally and in the international arena

PAFD salutes the indefatigable and resilient spirits of the Sidama Loqqee martyrs and all the other civilians who have been the victims of past and ongoing massacre by current callous regime in Ethiopia.

Finally, PAFD promises that all those wronged souls may rest in peace and that their valuable lives will be not be lost in vain. It will continue fighting for justice and democracy and righting the wrongs committed against them and the other living multitudes. PAFD will never forget your courageous and honorable sacrifices for generations to come.

PAFD Executives, May 30, 2016, London


 

Sidama:The Sidama People Globally Mark the 14th Commemorative Anniversary of Sidama Loqqee Massacre May 31, 2016

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Odaa OromooSidama Nation Flag

The Sidama Nation Globally Marks the 14th Commemorative Anniversary of Sidama Loqqee Massacre


May 30, 2016, London Conference

Press Release by Sidama National Liberation Front (SNLF)


About six dozen confirmed and several dozen unconfirmed Sidama civilians have been indiscriminately gunned down in broad day lights by Ethiopian armed forces on May 24, 2002 in Sidama land whilst peacefully protesting government’s continued denial of constitutionally guaranteed rights to regional self-administration. The Sidama of all walk of lives have staged on a peaceful demonstration in Hawassa’s outskirts village known as Loqqee, on early hours of the aforementioned date after fully satisfying the constitutional requirements rightly stipulated in incumbent’s constitution whilst undertaking such publically guaranteed democratic privileges. Over 300 have been seriously injured and the other several hundreds have sustained minor injuries.
Disallowed to be collected by their love ones’, the dead bodies of the Sidama victims have been left for days to be devoured by by hyenas during the period of 24-48 hours’ strict curfew imposed in entire Sidama land following the Loqqee massacre. Over 15,000 Sidama civilians from all over the Sidama districts and villages have been also rounded up to be indiscriminately mass arrested and tortured; as the military personnel were allowed to roam on the streets and villages -literally terrorizing the entire nation.

The Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF/EPRDF’s) government under the leadership of late PM Meles Zenawi has meticulously planned and centrally coordinated the Sdiama Loqqee massacre. The current TPLF/EPRDF’s PM, Hailemariam Desalegn -the then Southern Ethiopian regional State president has been given the responsibilities of stage-managing of the Sidama Loqqee massacre and has been also ordered to chair a pre-massacre extraordinary urgent meetings of May 23, 2002. Assigned by late PM, federal government officials, regional and Sidama Zone politicians numbering 21 participants have taken part in the said stage-managing meeting of the massacre in the eve of May 24, 2002 Loqqee massacre in Hawassa (the Sidama capital). They all but two Sidama participants have agreed to shoot and kill all Sidama civilians if they go on with demonstration in the following morning. The aforementioned massacre has taken place under such deliberately and clearly targeted killing of the Sidama civilians who have done no wrong but attempted to exercise their constitutional guaranteed rights.

The Sidama nation is globally marking the said 14th commemorative anniversary of the Sidama Loqqee massacre whilst the nation is still languishing under TPLF’s brutally oppressive regime seeking the way out of it with the rest of Ethiopians. The nation commemorates the 14th anniversary of its sons and daughter’s massacre in the midst of further government orchestrated impoverishment, displacements of millions of Sidama peasants, deliberately imposed subjugation, economical and politico-social marginalization. More importantly, the nation is commemorating the 14th anniversary with the rest of subjugated and massacred Ethiopians with renewed sense of hope and determination to bring those who have massacred the Sidama civilians and the other Ethiopian civilians to justice.

The London conference of May 30th 2016 Sidama Loqqee 14th commemorative anniversary and other Ethiopians massacre commemorating event asserts the fact that the future directions of peoples of Ethiopia depends on us all. The massacre is ongoing in Oromia, Ogadenia, Amhara, Gambella, Benshangul, south Omo and the rest of Ethiopia. Therefore, we call upon all Ethiopians to join us in fighting of the repressive regime to bring about lasting and genuine solution beneficial to all Ethiopians.

To date no person from federal to regional and Sidama Zone level has been held accountable for the Sidama Loqqee massacre. Instead, those who have been fully involved in planning, stage-managing and massacring of the Sidama civilians have been uplifted and rewarded with more powers, financial packages and privileges. The SNLF categorically condemns the brutal action of the TPLF’s barbaric regime and calls upon all democracy loving Ethiopia related politicians and the entire peoples of Ethiopia to be united to fight the regime enslaving us all with rigor and determination.

We never forget the Sidama Loqqe massacre victims and the cause for which they have sacrificed their precious lives. We also never forget the Oromo, Ogadenia, Amhara, Gambella, Benshangul and the rest of Ethiopians who have been massacred by TPLF/EPRDF’s brutal regime during its 25 years of reign of terror.

We salute the Sidama Loqqee Massacre Victims and the rest of Ethiopian people’s victims. May your souls rest in peace whilst we fight for justice to prevail on your behalf.

SNLF, May 30, 2016

New Report from State Department Details Widespread Human Rights Abuses in Ethiopia. #OromoProtests May 11, 2016

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New Report from State Department Details Widespread Human Rights Abuses in Ethiopia

Oakland Institute, 9 May 2016

Suruma people of the Omo Valley are being tortured by  fascist Ethiopia (Agazi) foreces because  they protested their land being taken for Sugar  plantation

 

Oakland, CA—The United States Department of State recently released its annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, including an in-depth account of the human rights situation in Ethiopia. The report confirmed many of the ongoing human rights violations that the Oakland Institute has detailed in Ethiopia, including: abuses associated with the Government’s villagization program; restrictions on basic freedoms of expression, assembly, association, movement, and religious affairs; restrictions on activities of civil society organizations; and more.

“The US State Department report confirms that countless human rights abuses are being perpetrated by the Ethiopian Government,” said Anuradha Mittal, Executive Director of the Oakland Institute. “It also highlights appalling issues associated with Ethiopia’s criminal system, such as the use of torture, a weak and politically influenced judiciary, life-threatening prison conditions, and the use of electric shocks and beatings to extract confessions.”

Caught in this horrific system are thousands of journalists, political opposition members, land rights defenders, students, and indigenous and religious leaders, who have been unlawfully detained and arrested under Ethiopia’s draconian Anti-Terrorism Proclamation.

Included in the State Department report are the cases of Ethiopian Muslim leaders, detained and charged under the Anti-Terrorism Proclamation for participating in protests for religious freedom; and of land rights defenders Omot Agway Okwoy, Ashinie Astin, and Jamal Oumar Hojele who were arrested en route to a food security conference in Nairobi and charged under the Anti-Terrorism law.

Countless more stories were not included in the report, including that of indigenous Anuak leader Okello Akway Ochalla, who was abducted in South Sudan and forcibly taken to Ethiopia, in complete violation of extradition treaties and international law, for speaking out about abuses perpetrated against the people of Gambella, Ethiopia. On April 27, 2016, after more than two years in jail, Mr. Okello was handed a nine year prison sentence.

“Over the past years, countless indigenous communities have been evicted from their land to make way for large-scale land grabs in Ethiopia,” commented Mittal. “These displacements are happening without the free, prior, and informed consent of the impacted populations, and when communities resist, they are forcibly removed by means of violence, rape, imprisonment, and the denial of humanitarian assistance, including food aid. To make matters worse, the people who stand up and fight for the rights of those communities – people like Mr. Okello and Pastor Omot – are being jailed. This must stop.”

“Ethiopia is the United States’ closest ally in Africa and the second largest recipient of US overseas development assistance in Africa,” she continued. “In these unique roles, the US has both the power and the moral responsibility to ensure that basic human rights and the rule of law are upheld in the country. Through its report, the United States acknowledges the widespread human rights violations taking place in Ethiopia. The question is: when will the US finally do something to address this egregious situation?”


http://www.oaklandinstitute.org/new-report-state-department-details-widespread-human-rights-abuses-ethiopia


 

Al Jazeera: Politics, War & Conflict in Ethiopia: ‘Ethiopia is boiling’ May 8, 2016

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Odaa Oromoo

Abdirahman Mahdi of ONLF: ‘Ethiopia is boiling’

Senior leader of Ethiopia’s Somali rebel group discusses a growing alliance of groups seeking self-determination.

Al Jazeera, 07 May 2016

Abdirahman Mahdi of ONLF

http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/talktojazeera/2016/05/ethnic-somali-abdirahman-mahdi-onlf-ethiopia-boiling-160507083254836.html


Ethiopia, Africa’s oldest independent country, is one of the West’s closest allies in the Horn of Africa.

Bordering Kenya, South Sudan, Eritrea, Djibouti and Somalia, this vast nation is home to about 80 different ethnic groups, many with their own languages and customs.

Despite Ethiopia’s demographic diversity, the country’s power structure in mainly centralised in its capital Addis Ababa, located in the heart of the country.

And this is resented by some of Ethiopia’s many different ethnic groups.

To the far east of the country lies Ethiopia’s Somali region. The people there have Ethiopian nationality but identify as Somalis. Many there say that their desperately poor region is starved of resources.

This has led some to rise up and challenge the government.

Self-determination struggle

A movement for self-determination for Ogaden, which is officially known as the Somali region, led by the Ogaden National Liberation Force (ONLF), began in the mid-1980s. ONLF took up arms a decade later.

Their attacks led the Ethiopian government to send in troops and to carry out what many describe as a brutal crackdown on the some five million ethnic Somalis who live in this arid region.

Thousands of people have died in a struggle that few outsiders are allowed to witness. It’s an invisible conflict that has cost lives and livelihoods, and despite several rounds of talks in recent years, has no end in sight.

After decades of conflict with little or no progress, should ONLF give up their fight?

“How long did South Africa [take to] defeat Apartheid? When you are fighting for your rights, time is not an issue,” Abdirahman Mahdi, a founding member and the foreign secretary of ONLF, tells Al Jazeera.

The only policy in the Somali region they have is to dominate it, to exploit the oil, to consider the people as just a nuisance, and to exploit our resources and kill our people. Even if they allowed 10% of our rights in 1994, this fighting would not have started.

Abdirahman Mahdi, founding member and foreign secretary of the Ogaden National Liberation Force (ONLF)

“My father was fighting for our rights and my children will fight for our rights. So for us, justice is the only solution – there is no other way.”

Madhi denies that ONLF wants to secede from Ethiopia and claims this is “a misconception that’s being propagated by the Ethiopian regime”.

ONLF’s fight, he says, is about seeking the “right to decide our future”.

The movement wants the “right to self-determination, including even leaving the country”. ONLF “cannot decide what the Somali people want. What we are saying is let them be given their right to decide.”

He says: “Free choice is not secession; free choice means you can choose the right to live together in peace and dignity.”

ONLF’s fight is not with federalism nor with ethnicity, Madhi says. “The issue is when one group wants to dominate the rest of the people in Ethiopia. So we are going to dismantle that.”

Madhi speaks of the marginalisation of Ethiopia’s Somali region. “[Until] recently, we had only one secondary school after 100 years of Ethiopian occupation, we had one hospital … Our women have no maternity services.”

The region, he says, suffers from a brutal trade and aid embargo and a military occupation, which he alleges has resulted in the rape of 30% of the region’s women and more than 30,000 detentions.

“How can you develop people you are raping?” he asks.

Madhi says ONLF is an Africanist movement, the struggle is expanding and the group is now working with other ethnic groups in the country by staging “peaceful mass demonstrations”.

“Our alliance is now expanding,” he says. “Like the Arab Spring, we are going to start insurrection all over the place. Ethiopia is now boiling … The regime is now in disarray; they’re divided. The people of Ethiopia have now risen up. They want their rights. We are tired of one clique dominating the rest of Ethiopia.”

On Talk to Al Jazeera, Madhi discusses the future and vision of ONLF, the criticism that he is out of touch with the needs and situation of the people in Ethiopia’s Somali region now that he lives abroad, and he responds to allegations of human rights abuses committed by ONLF and that the group is armed and trained by Eritrea.


http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/talktojazeera/2016/05/ethnic-somali-abdirahman-mahdi-onlf-ethiopia-boiling-160507083254836.html

AFAR PEOPLE IN ETHIOPIA FACING UNPRECEDENTED CATASTROPHIC SITUATION April 22, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in Afar, 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 OromooAfar woman

AFAR, ARDUF

 


AFARS FACING UNPRECEDENTED CATASTROPHIC SITUATION


PRESS RELEASE


Currently, the Afar people in Ethiopia are facing disastrous, appalling and unprecedented dreadful famine catastrophe. The famine was not only caused by lack of rain, drought, climate change and effect of El Niño weather conditions as they claim but, it was a result of TPLF/EPRDF corruption, failure of strategies and policies, bad governance, human rights violations, unlawful land grabbing, forcible removal and eviction of Afar People from their traditional grazing land. They were driven away from the banks of Awash River which has been the lifeline of the Afar population that depend on it for survival since time immemorial to make place for the sugar plantations and large-scale agricultural projects owned by TPLF and foreign multinational corporations, companies and investors.

First, the Afar people saying that since 2012, they have been calling on the Federal and Regional Governments to find solution for the water shortages, environmental degradation, destruction of pastors and grazing resources, drying up of the Awash River problems that caused by damming of the Awash River by the regime, nevertheless their appeal and call fell on deaf ear.

Second it is a well-documented fact is that both the Ex-President and the current President of the Afar region, Ex- and current Federal Communication Affairs Office Minister have deliberately and blindly denied the existence of the famine in Ethiopia during 2013-2015.

Third, it is irrefutable fact is that TPLF/ ANDP or “ADE as it is known locally” purposely failed to recognise, acknowledge and to declare the famine on time. They even refused to call publically on the international Community for emergency humanitarian assistance to help the affected peoples in the country.

Additional fact is that, instead of helping the affected peoples by the famine, Federal Government Communication Affairs Office Minister Redwan Hussein blamed and accused the Afar pastoralists for the death of their livestock in order to cover his Government’s forcible removal of Afar pastoralists from their traditional grazing land on the Awash River banks to make away for TPLF, Foreign Multinational Corporations’ and Investors owned large scale Projects. The famine created by TPLF/EPRDF has already caused too many catastrophic problems for the Afar, such as food insecurity, water crisis, widespread malnutrition, health problem and unprecedented death of their livestock. As a result, the Afar have severely suffered.
In addition to the unprecedented famine that was worsened by the policies of the regime the TPLF has developed the following plans to systematically exterminate the Afar in Ethiopia:-

  • Unlawful land grabbing and enforced eviction from their land
  • Removing them from the Awash River banks forcibly
  • Transferring parts of Afar land to the Somali tribe called Issa to create endless conflict between them in coordination with Issa dominated regime of Djibouti for its interests.
  • Instigating conflicts between the Afar and their neighbouring peoples
  • Removing Afar from all mineralised areas of Afar land
  • Appointing uneducated, unskilled, inexperienced and corrupted individuals as Afar region officials to serve the interest of TPLF.
  • Creating tribalism, mistrust and division between the ruling mafia and the Afar society;
  • Controlling Afar region economic, political, social and cultural affairs by appointed Tigray Security Advisors or Counsellor, locally known as Ammakari

Any person who disagrees or rejects ANDP (QADE) TPLF (WAYANE) order is called anti peace element and sympathizer with ARDUF then; he/she is arrested and imprisoned arbitrarily. Today, the Afar region does not have a legitimate political authority accountable to the Afar. It is ruled by TPLF former fighters who are member of the Tigray People Liberation Front (TPLF). Their main duty, obligation and responsibility is only to serve their master not the Afar people, as they appointed by TPLF not by the Afar people, they are only accountable and answerable to the TPLF.
As a result of TPLF racially motivated discriminatory politics and policies the Peoples of Ethiopia in all regions are all facing increasing political oppression, economic marginalisation, and social exclusion, gross violation of human rights, horrible famine and internal displacement. The regime continues to unlawfully kill, systematically repress and arbitrarily arrest people in the regions of Oromia, Ogaden, Sidama, Amhara and Gambella in general and in the districts of Konso, Qimant, Humera, Tsegede and Wolkait in particular who fight for their basic human rights.

ARDUF condemns in the strongest possible terms the horrifying famine crimes of killings, displacement and forcible removal from their ancestral land committed by TPLF regime on the Afar people in particular; and against other peoples in Ethiopia in general.

ARDUF calls on all Ethiopian opposition forces, civil societies, human rights defenders and journalists to reject and denounce the politics of divide and rule by an iron fist and oppression of TPLF/EPRDF and support a democratic armed struggle to eliminate the fascist regime and to establish a genuine Democratic Federalism based on the rule of law in Ethiopia.

Long live the Victory of ARDUF & Ethiopian Peoples

Military Command Centre (MCC)
Information Desk of ARDUF
Afar Revolutionary Democratic Unity Front (ARDUF)


 

PAFD (NE Africa): Resolution of the Peoples Alliance for Freedom and Democracy’s Public Meeting on 9th of April, 2016 in Frankfurt am Main Germany April 11, 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 EthiopiaPAFD NEWS
 PAFD Public Meeting on 9th of April, 2016 in Frankfurt am Main Germany
 PAFD Public Meeting on 9th of April, 2016 in Frankfurt am Main Germany. p1
Peoples Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD) public meeting hosted by Oromo Student Union and Ogaden Community in Germany was held on 9th of April 2016 in Frankfurt am Main, Germany.
It was attended by two Executive committee members of PAFD, human rights advocators, invited guests, Veteran members of successful liberation movement, representatives of youths and Women and generally by the peoples and nations of member organisations of PAFD.
On this meeting, paper was presented by the officials of PAFD on the current political situation in the Horn of Africa with special emphasis on Ethiopia. The objectives of the PAFD were also explained. The atrocious nature of EPRDF across the empire, images and videos of the ongoing protest and public resistance from Oromia have been presented. Artists have entertained with cultural music in between discussions.
Member Communities and other peace loving friends in Germany all gathered on this occasion have expressed their unflinching  support and solidarity for the Alliance. They noted that the oppressed peoples in Ethiopia have now reached a tipping point where the outcry of the peoples under Occupation of the Ethiopian regime cannot be ignored any more.
After thorough discussions and comments on the presentations during the meeting the participants continued discussions on the various issues. Finally the participants concluded the meeting upon passing political resolution.

The Political Resolution of this public meeting in Germany: –

  1. Hereby in unison we convey our unflinching support for PAFD in its struggle against the TPLF/EPRDF-led Ethiopian regime, to regain the legitimate national right for the Nations and peoples. We also appreciate the outcome of PAFD congress that brought member organisations under one umbrella leadership to forge stronger bond of unity among member organisations which allowed them to strengthen their combined effort on diplomatic, political and armed struggle against TPLF. The participants of the meeting also summoned all nations and Nationalities in Ethiopia to create a firm ground for a unity of purpose and mutual respect. In the last twenty plus years TPLF/EPRDF has been tactically engaged in instigation of ethnic discord. We call up on our peoples to be aware of “divide and rule” colonial principle and resolve their conflict in a manner they used to live in it.
  2. The Ethiopian government is currently playing a destructive and destabilizing role in the Horn of Africa in general and on the peoples under its rule in particular. The Dictatorial regime run by the TPLF is currently using every means at its disposal to silence the quest of people for justice. Freedom of press, civil Societies and independent judiciary are non-existence in this country. The Regular army and Agazi militias are using brute force against innocent Oromo protesters with complete impunity; extra-judicial executions, enforced disappearances, arbitrary mass detentions and harsh prison terms under dubious laws are practiced beyond imagination. People are evicted from their ancestral land under the pretext of “Development” and “master plans”. We strongly condemn such belligerent act of Ethiopian regime.
  3. The partnership of EU with Ethiopia is aimed to bring a political environment guaranteeing peace, security and stability, which are the solid ground for sustainable economic policies and developments. Respect of human right violations, sustained economic growth, developing the private sector, increasing employment, good governance and etc. are the main witness and visible criterion for the objective of the partnership. Concerning the current Tigryan Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF) led regime of Ethiopia, there is massive evidence, which demonstrates beyond any doubt that the government is intensifying the persecution of Ogadeni, Oromo, Sidama, Gambella, Benishangul and other nations and nationalities in the empire. We appeal to the international communities in general and EU to implement ACP-EU agreement and its resolution passed on 21st January 2016.
  4. The public meeting appreciated Resolution of EU, Concerns of some democratic governments and honours Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Human rights League Horn of Africa, Oromia Support Group, Ethiopian Human Rights Council and International Commission of Jurists for their principled and responsible activities in exposing the atrocities of TPLF government behind the curtail. Although the effort of these humanitarian organisations are limited to exposure, as it ought to be as a matter of rule, the participants of this public meeting values this contribution to be immense in bridling the militant and aggressive nature of the TPLF regime.
  5. It is clear that the EPRDF force’s violent manoeuvre is intensifying from day to day. People are being denied to lead peaceful life. Such deplorable act has to be unequivocally condemned by all peace-loving forces. Therefore, we call upon all peoples in the empire of Ethiopia to join us in the struggle against the EPRDF regime.
  6. We also call USA, EU and AU to refrain themselves on current deal with TPLF’s regime about the Oromo protest behind the curtail without the consent of peoples in Ethiopia and particularly in this case the Oromos.

Peace and justice shall prevail!

Frankfurt, Germany

9 Apri 2016

Ethiopia – #OromoProtests and Ethiopian Repression: Overview March 28, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Africa, Amnesty International's Report: Because I Am Oromo, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Oromia, Oromo.
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Odaa OromooGadaa.com and finfinnee Tribune#OromoProtests against the Ethiopian regime fascist tyranny. Join the peaceful movement for justice, democracy, development and freedom of Oromo and other oppressed people in EthiopiaAgazi, fascist TPLF Ethiopia's forces attacking unarmed and peaceful #OromoProtests in Baabichaa town central Oromia (w. Shawa) , December 10, 2015#OromoProtests‬ (1st March 2016) in Qarsaa town. Oromo nationals Muraadii and Kadir Siraj Ahmed killed by AgaziStop killing Oromo StudentsSuruma people of the Omo Valley are being tortured by  fascist Ethiopia (Agazi) forces because  they protested their land being taken for Sugar  plantationOromo people mourn a suspected protester who was allegedly shot dead by Ethiopian security forces, Oromia, Dec. 2015Women mourn during the funeral ceremony of a primary school teacher who family members said was shot dead by military forces during protests in Oromia#OromoProtests iconic picture#OromoProtests Global Solidarity Rally, South Africa, 1st Feb. 2016


Ethiopia – Oromo Protests and Ethiopian Repression: Overview

By Finfinne Tribune | Gadaa.com |Bitootessa/March 28, 2016


 

The current round of Oromo protests is a continuation of previous peaceful protests against the government’s illegal land grabbing. The Ethiopian government massacred over 78 university students in Ambo in 2014 but left their questions unanswered. The current protests ask the same unanswered questions but they also raise deeper grievances and longstanding issues of injustice, identity and fundamental human rights. They particularly focus on the brutalities of the last 25 years of totalitarian repression to which the international community has turned a blind eye.

Ethiopia and the World

Ethiopia is a darling of both the West and the East of the now unidentifiable Cold War divide. In the West, Ethiopia is praised for being a key ally in the war on terror and for hosting refugees. In the East and the Middle East, she is celebrated for opening up the country for land grabbing.

Both sides applaud Ethiopia for creating the fastest growing economy in Africa and for allowing their banks and companies access to land and investment for economic development.

What is hidden in the praise for hosting refugees is the mind-boggling number of refugees that Ethiopia herself produces by turning the country into a bloodbath for dissidents. What is hidden is that some of those who flee atrocity cannot make it to asylum or resettlement because the Ethiopian regime hunts them down and captures them, because they are eaten by wild animals, or because they drown in oceans and big seas in their desperate attempt to reach safety.

What is hidden in the praise for Ethiopia’s alliance against terrorism is the barbaric terrorism of the Ethiopian state itself. What is hidden is that Ethiopia uses its anti-terrorism proclamation as a weapon for silencing any form of dissent. What is hidden is that many thousands of innocent political opponents, journalists, artist, musicians and peaceful protestors are marked as terrorists and beaten, jailed, tortured, killed, or otherwise exiled.

What is drowned out in the applause of economic development is the staggering human cost of land grabbing and the brute bestiality of Ethiopian state terrorism to snuff out indigenous land claims. The savage massacre of thousands of innocent indigenous peoples in Gambella, Ogaden, Oromia, Tepi, and Wolkayet are only a few examples of genocidal ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity that the Ethiopian government commits in the name of development.

Social Engineering: Minoritizing the Majority

Ethiopia is an incredibly diverse multinational and multi-faith state of 100 million people. The Ethiopian government is admired for its bold attempt at ethnic federalism in order to address the controversial national question and foster democratic relations among its diverse polity.

What is hidden, however, is that the so-called ethnic federalism is a sham and the incredibly beautiful diversity is eclipsed by the totalitarian repression of a single-party dominated by a handful of elite, namely the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), from a minority national group from Tigray.

What is hidden is that this minority clique from Tigray clings on to power by pitting nations against nations, by muzzling free expression, and by jailing, killing and exiling its political opponents. What is hidden is that this repressive clique used iron fist over the last 25 years to entrench its exclusive empire. What is hidden is the extreme greed and lust for power that put a tight absolute control of the country in the hands of a few hand-picked TPLF members.

What is hidden is that Tigray, the nation from which the TPLF clique hails, makes only 6% of Ethiopia’s population but this clique takes exclusive absolute control over the politics, economy, military and media of the entire country. What is hidden is that Oromos constitute 90% of political prisoners while they are only 40% (close to 40 million) of Ethiopia’s population.

What is hidden is that the late Meles Zenawi, the architect of the current TPLF Empire, had vowed to destroy those he considered major threats, particularly the two most populous nations, Oromos and Ahmaras. He vowed to reduce Oromos to a minority because of their numerous population and their crucial demographic, geographic, and geopolitical centrality for the entire Horn of Africa region. As for Amharas, he vowed to break their dominance because he fostered vengeance against them for what he saw as their former ruling-elite chauvinism.

What is deeply hidden is that his policy of destruction is being carried out through the social engineering of mass evictions of people from ancestral lands, mass massacre of those who resist, permanent mass exile of those who manage to escape, mass incarceration and genocidal ethnic cleansing of those who remain. What is hidden is that fertile land from which indigenous peoples are massacred or illegally evicted without compensation is given to TPLF members or leased to foreign investors for some ridiculous 99 years. What is hidden is this silent TPLF take over, TPLF turning itself into a majority though social engineering and political vote-rigging.

What is not so hidden is that the shameless declaration of 100% election victory (read 0% dissent tolerance) in May 2015 by the cliquish ruling party is a suicidal pill at the culmination of its lust for power. What is not so hidden is that this victory is an utter failure incurred through merciless killing, jailing and harassment of people and broad-day robbery of their ballots. What is not hidden is that the 100% victory of 2015 is the grand finale of the 2005 election where this clique massacred over 200 opposition party protestors and robbed them of their election wins.

Troubling Impunity

One thing is deeply troubling: the TPLF clique is committing all the mind-boggling atrocities with utter impunity under the watching eyes of a world that fails to take any meaningful action to stop the carnage. What is troubling is that tyranny is rewarded as good governance, emboldening the regime to continue with its genocide and ethnic cleansing. What is troubling is Ethiopia’s economic development is celebrated even as its most vulnerable children are exposed to famine.

What has become obvious, however, is that all the praised economic development has not spared the cliquish regime from begging food aid for 20 million of its fellow citizens facing starvation. What is so obvious is that, although drought may be the result of El Nino and climate change, food scarcity is the result of the greedy clique gobbling up the wealth of the entire nation.

Impunity or not, the people seem to have discarded the regime. The peace-loving ordinary people of Ethiopia, people renowned for their strong forbearance and unlimited patience, have now run out of patience. These law-abiding people are confronted by a totalitarian clique that refuses to abide by any law, including its own constitution. The people have now said: enough is enough!

The peaceful protest triggered in the largest and most populous nation of Oromia is spreading to the entire country. People are turning its claim of 100% election victory inside out. They are demonstrating their overwhelming rejection.

Focus on Oromo Protests

March 12, 2016 marks exactly four months of the ongoing Oromo peaceful protests which started on November 12, 2015. The protests have rocked every corner of Oromia and they are spreading to other parts of Ethiopia. They started in response to the illegal land grabbing by the government, which left millions of indigenous Oromo farmers landless and homeless. This was in utter violation of their constitutional rights and fundamental human rights.

Primary and high school students, the children of the farmers who felt the pinch, started the peaceful protests which quickly engulfed the entire state of Oromia. Instead of listening to their legitimate grievances, however, the Ethiopian government responded by unleashing its military forces and mercilessly beating and killing unarmed peaceful protestors. Marking an entire nation as terrorist and turning its defence forces against its own citizens, the government dissolved civilian administration and imposed a martial law. The besieged state of Oromia is now ruled by eight of the country’s top war generals under the central command post of the Prime Minister.

Soldiers are now ravaging the Oromo communities. Over 450 peaceful protestors have been massacred, including many children and pregnant women. The death toll continues to rise as bodies are still being discovered in the ditches, forests and rivers. Mothers are killed while protecting their children. Elders as old as 80 are killed alongside children as young as 2. Many thousands are savagely beaten and maimed. Over 12, 000 are jailed and tortured. Mostly young students are being targeted. Soldiers are regularly breaking into university dormitories, beating students and raping young women. They are regularly breaking into private homes, beating men and raping women in front of their families. Girls as young as 12 are gang raped by soldiers.

The carnage continues today, four months into the protests. Ongoing appeals to donor nations resulted in some public condemnations of the atrocities but fell short of taking meaningful action. Sadly, western governments have pushed human rights and justice to the back burner, prioritizing security and the economy.

Please share this information with all who care about human lives and human rights. The claims made here are all documented in the accompanying Info Kit [pdf file] for your reference.


 

Info-Kit-Updated-18-03-16


 

http://gadaa.com/oduu/31687/2016/03/28/ethiopia-oromo-protests-and-ethiopian-repression-overview/

HORN OF AFRICA (ETHIOPIA): RESOLUTION OF THE FIRST CONGRESS OF PEOPLES ALLIANCE FOR FREEDOM AND DEMOCRACY (PAFD) March 27, 2016

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.
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Odaa OromooPAFD NEWSPeoples alliances for freedom and democracy, Ethiopia, Horn of Africa

Peoples alliances for freedom and democracy, Ethiopia, Horn of Africa p1

 

Peoples Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD) held its first successful general congress from March 21st to 25th 2016 in Eritrean capital, Asmara. The Congress has discussed the status of our collective struggle in particular, the current situation in Ethiopia, the Horn of Africa and the world in details.

PAFD is a political alliance united for the struggle to free the oppressed peoples in Ethiopia and it was established on the 23rd of October 2015 in the Norwegian capital, Oslo, by five different political organizations, namely – Benishangul People’s Liberation Movement (BPLM), the Gambela People’s Liberation Movement (GPLM), the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF), Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), the Sidama National Liberation Front (SNLF) and representatives from women and youth. The Alliance is determined to uproot the current oppressive minority regime in order to safeguard and advance peoples’ rights to exercise genuine self-determination.

The situation in Ethiopian Empire is deteriorating day by day whereby the dictatorial Ethiopian regime led by TPLF/EPRDF’s government is evicting, harassing, imprisoning civilians without due process of law and intensifying wonton killings.

The military and security apparatus of the government is firing on peaceful demonstrators in most parts of the country, in general, and in Oromia region in particular. Denial of political rights of people has already led to mass uprising in different parts of the county, in general, as we speak. In its attempt to suppress the peaceful resistances and struggle, the TPLF/EPRDF’s government resorted to responding to peoples’ peaceful quest with violence and declared martial law.

Additionally, its response is also become evident as it is implementing various forms of brutalizing methods. It also continuously uproots people from their ancestral lands deploying excessive force and killing innocent civilians including children and pregnant women. Regardless of strong people’s opposition and international criticism to such illegal and inhumane policy, the regime, continues with implementing its harsh policy using international aids as a political weapon.

The regime continues to violet freedom of press, policy of land grabbing, exploitation of natural resources, instigating conflicts among different nations and nationalities to insure its grab on power.

After hearing report from temporary committee formed on founding conference, the chairmen of the five organizations and the participants of the general congress have discussed and analyzed the success, weakness, opportunities and possible threat the alliance might be facing during the course of its operational activities. After deliberation on founding documents, future political, diplomatic and military activities, the congress has ratified PAFD’s working documents.

The General congress also discussed and strategized about the future direction of the Alliance’s activities and clearly instructed its executive committee and all other functional bodies.

The General congress also elected its chairman, two vice chairmen, executive committee members and head of different functional bodies to carry out the operational tasks of the Alliance. After assessing the current situation of the Ethiopian Empire, the Horn of Africa and wider global affairs the PAFD’s General Congress calls upon:

  • The peoples of our member organizations to be unconditionally united to resist and intensify their legitimate struggle to achieve their unalienable rights denied to them by successive Ethiopian rulers including the current one.
  • The Ethiopian Regime to unconditionally stop killing of unarmed innocent civilians, imprisoning without due process of law, looting natural resources of oppressed nations and people and media blockage.
  • The military and security apparatus to stop killing of innocent civilians and we urge it to stand with people to end the TPLF/EPRDF’s brutal rule.
  • All political organizations in the Ethiopian Empire to stand shoulder to shoulder to fight the dictatorial regime in unison. Furthermore, PAFD invites all opposition groups who are struggling for freedom, justice, equality and democracy to unconditionally join the Alliance.
  • The international community to respect the wishes, desires and the rights of all the nations and peoples in Ethiopia, and stop supporting the dictatorial regime before the current situation becomes totally uncontrollable.
  • We also ask the international community to exert their influence in bringing those responsible massacring innocent civilians to justice.

Finally, PAFD strongly condemns the illegal use of aid given to the people who are in great need, and preventing them from acquiring other means by blocking trade and denying access to all humanitarian assistance. Furthermore, we condemn soliciting aid for regime’s political purposes created by evicting indigenous peoples from their fertile land and chartering it to the so called foreign and ruling class investors.

Peace, Democracy, Freedom and Genuine rights of peoples to Self determination!

Peoples Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD)

March 25, 2016


 

Murtii fi Kutannoolee Kora 1ffaa Tumsa Ummatootaa Bilisummaa fi Dimokraasii(PAFD) Tumsi Ummatootaa Bilisummaa fi Dimokraasii(PAFD) kora jalqabaa  Bitootessa 21 hanga 25 bara 2016 magaalaa Asmaraa Eertiraatti, gaggeeffatee milkiin xumuratee jira.

Kori kun haala qabsoo waloo irratti, haala yeroo ammaa Itoophiya keessaa, haala Godinaa Gaanfa Afrikaa fi kan idil addunyaarratti bal’inaan mari’ateera. Tumsi Ummatootaa Bilisummaa fi Dimokraasii, qabsoo ummatoota cunqurfamoo Itoophiyaa bilisa baasuuf gaggeeffamu waloon finiinsuuf tumsa siyaasaa Onkoloolessa 23 bara 2015 magaalaa guddoo Noorweey, Oslootti dhaabbolee siyaasaa adda addaa Shan:- Sochii Bilisummaa Ummatoota Benishaangul(BPLM), Sochii Bilisummaa Ummatoota Gaambeellaa(GPLM), Adda Bilisummaa Biyyoolessaa Ogaadeen(ONLF), Adda Bilisummaa Oromoo (OLF) fi Adda Bilisummaa Biyyoolessa Sidaamaa(SNLF), bakka bu’oota dubartootaa fi dargaggootaan bu’ureeffame dha.

Tumsi kun sirna cunqursaa murna abbaa irree wayta ammaa aangoorra jiru hundeen buqqisuudhaan ummatoonni akka mirgoota isaanii kabajsiifatanii fi hiree murteeffannaa isaanii guutuutti fiixa baafatan dandeessisuuf jabinaan hojjeta. Haalli impaayera Itoophiyaa keessaa guyyaa irraa gara guyyaatti hammaataa kan jiru yoo tahu, sirni cunqursaa Itoophiya, mootummaa TPLF/EPRD’n durfamu lammiilee siviilii dachee isaaniirraa buqqisaa, hiraarsaa, seeraan ala hidhaa fi tahe jedhee ajjeechaa jumlaa irratti raawwatu bal’inaan itti fufee argama. Humnoonni waraanaa fi tikaa mootummaa naannolee biyyatii hedduu keessatti addatti ammoo naannoo Oromiyaatti lammiilee hiriira nagaa bahanirratti rasaasa dhukaasaa jiru. Mirga siyaasaa waakkatamuun ummatootni waliigala naannolee biyyattii heddutti akka fincilan taasisee waytuma Korri kun gaggeeffamaa jirru kanattuullee diddaatu deemaa jira. Mootummaan TPLF/EPRDF diddaa fi qabsoo karaa nagaa gaggeeffamaa jiru ukkaamsuuf akka furmaataatti kan fudhate ummatoota karaa nagaa gaaffii dhiyeessan irratti tarkaanfii suukaneessaa fudhachuu fi bulchiinsa waraanaa jala galchuun hacuucuu dha. Dabalataanis, tooftaaleen yakka hammeenyaa sirnichi itti fayyadamaa jiru garaagaraatis deebisaa gaaffii ummatootaaf laataa jiru ifatti agarsisu. Daa’immanii fi dubartoota ulfaa dabalatee lammiilee fayyaaleyyii gara-jabinaan ajjeesuu fi humnatti dhimma bahee lafa akaakilee-abaabilee isaaniirraa buqqisuus akka itti fufee jira. Imaammata gocha seeraan alaa fi yakka namoom-dhaba tarkaanfachiisaa jiruun ummatoota biyyattiirraa mormii jabaan irratti gaggeeffamus, qeeqni jabaan hawaasa addunyaarraa isa mudatus sirnichi, imaammata hammeenyaa hojiirra oolchuu itti fufuudhaan gargaarsa addunyaarraa argatu akka meeshaa siyaasaatti dhimma bahaatuma jira.

Imaammata gocha seeraan alaa fi yakka namoom-dhaba tarkaanfachiisaa jiruun ummatoota biyyattiirraa mormii jabaan irratti gaggeeffamus, qeeqni jabaan hawaasa addunyaarraa isa mudatus sirnichi, imaammata hammeenyaa hojiirra oolchuu itti fufuudhaan gargaarsa addunyaarraa argatu akka meeshaa siyaasaatti dhimma bahaatuma jira. Sirni wayyaanee mirga bilisummaa Pireesii sarbuu, imaammata saamicha lafaa fi saamicha qabeenya uumamaa akkasumas aangoorra of tursuuf sabootaa fi sab-lammoota jidduutti shira xaxee walitti bu’iinsa dhalchuus itti fufe malee hin dhaabne. Korri 1ffaa Tumsa Ummatootaa Bilisummaa fi Dimokraasii, gaabaasa Koreen yeroo konfaransii bu’uursaarratti filame dhiyeesse erga dhaggeeffatee booda, dura taa’onni dhaabbilee Shananii fi hirmaattonni korichaa milkaayina, dadhabina, hiree fi dhimmoota adeemsa hojiilee tumsichaa keessatti gufuu uumuu malanirratti marii fi xiinxala bal’aa gaggeessaniiru. Barruulee bu’uuraa haala hegeree sochiilee siyaasaa, dippiloomaasii fi waraanaa ilaalchisuun dhiyaatan irratti mariin gaggeeffamee wal hubannaarra erga gahameen booda, korichi dokmantii hojii kan Tumsa Ummatootaa Bilisummaa fi Dimokraasii raggaasee jira. Korri waliigalaa kun kana malees kallattii hojiilee tumsichaa kan fuula duraa irratti mari’achuun tarsiimoo kan baafate yoo tahu, koree hoji-raawwachiiftuu fi qaamota tumsichaa biroo hundaafis qajeelfama dabarsee jira. Korri waliigalaa kun dura taa’aa, Itti aanoota dura taa’aa Lama, miseensota Koree hoji-raawwachiiftuu fi hogganoota qaamota tumsichaa hojiif dhaabbatan adda addaas akka hojiilee tumsichaa raawwataniif filee jira. Korri kun haala impaayera Itoophiyaa wayta ammaa, godinaa Gaanfa Afrikaa fi idil addunyaa erga xiinxaleen booda, waamicha qabsoo itti aanu dabarse. Ummatoonni dhaabolee miseensa Tumsichaa, mirgoota isaanii mootummaa amma aangoorra jiru dabalatee mootummoota Itoophiyaa dhufaa-dabraan sarbamaa jiran gonfachuuf haal-duree tokko malee tokkoomuun diddaa fi qabsoo itti jiran akka finiinsan, Mootummaan Itoophiyaa lammiilee siviilii harka duwwaa gaaffii mirgaa dhiyeessaa jiran ajjeesuu, seeraan ala hidhuu, qabeenya uumamaa sabootaa fi sab-lammiilee saamuu fi mancaasuu akkasumas miidiyaalee ugguruu daddaffiin akka dhaabu, Humnoonni waraanaa fi tikaa sirnichaatis lammiilee fayyaaleyyii ajjeesuu akka dhaabanii fi sirna bulchiinsa TPLF/ EPRDFtti xumura gochuuf ummata waliin akka hiriiran, Dhaabbileen siyaasaa Impaayera Itoophiyaa keessa jiran hundumtuu harka walqabachuudhaan tokkummaan sirna abbaa irreerratti akka qabsaawan, kanatti dabalees, gareeleen mormitootaa bilisummaa, walqixxummaa, haqaa fi dimokraasii dhugoomsuuf qabsaawaa jiran marti akka tumsichatti makaman Tumsi Ummatootaa Bilisummaa fi Dimokraasii waamicha isaa dabarsa.

Hawaasni addunyaa hawwii, fedhii fi mirga sabootaa fi ummatoota Itoophiyaa keessaa hunda akka kabajuu fi haalli ammaan tana biyyattii keessaa gara tohannoon alatti hin tarkaanfatin, sirna abbaa irree deeggaruu akka dhaaban Tumsi Ummatootaa Bilisummaa fi Dimokraasii waamicha isaa dabarsa. Kana malees tumsi kun, hawaasni addunya kanneen lammiilee siviilii ajjeesuun gaafatamoo tahan fuula seeraatti akka dhihaataniif dhiibbaa barbaachisu akka taasisan gaafata. Maayiirratti, Tumsi Ummatootaa Bilisummaa fi Dimokraasii gargaarsa ummatoota rakkoof saaxilamaniif kennamu seeraan ala itti fayyadamuu fi ummatootni miidhaan irra gahe hojjatanii akka of hin gargaarreef qoqqobbiin daldala mootummaan irra kaa’amee, akkasumas, gargaarsa namoomaa irratti uggura kaa’ame gadi jabeessee balaaleffata. Kana malees, gargaarsa ummatootaaf kenname dantaa siyaasaa irra oolfachuudhaan lammiileen lafa gabbataa qabeeya akaakilee-abaabilee isaanii taherraa buqqisuu fi invastaroota alaa dhufan jedhamanii fi sirnicha waliin hidhata qabanitti gurguraa jirus jabeessee balaaleffanna.

Nagaa, Dimokraasii fi Mirga Haqaa Ummatootaa kan Hiree Murteeffannaa!

Tumsa Ummatootaa kan Bilisummaa fi Dimokraasii(PAFD)

Bitootesssa 15, 2016

Asmaraa, Eertiraa

Waajjira Pireeziidiyemii

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ibsa-gaazexaa-tubd

 


 

የህዝቦች ትብብር ሇነጻነትና ሇዲሞክራሲ(PAFD) 1 ኛ ጉባዔ ውሳኔ

የህዝቦች ትብብር ሇነጻነትና ሇዲሞክራሲ(PAFD) የመጀመሪያውን የተሳካ ጠቅሊሊ ጉባዔ ከመጋቢት 21 እስከ 25 ቀን 2016ዓም በኤርትራ ርዕሰ-መዲና፡ ኣስመራ ኣካሂዷሌ። ጉባዔው በተሇይ ወቅታዊ የጋራ ትግሌ ሊይ፣ በኣሁኑ ወቅት በኢትዮጵያ ባሇው ሁኔታ ፣ በኣፍሪካ ቀንድ ቀጣናና ኣሇምኣቀፍ ሁኔታ ሊይ በስፋት ተወያይቷሌ። የህዝቦች ትብብር ሇነጻነትና ሇዲሞክራሲ የኢትዮጵያን ህዝቦች ነጻ ሇማውጣት እየተካሄዯ ያሇውን የነጻነትና የዲሞክራሲ ትግሌ በጋራ ሇማፋፋም ጥቅምት 23 ቀን 2015ዓም በኦስል ከተማ ከኣምስት የፖሇቲካ ድርጅቶች ማሇትም፥ የቤኒሻንጉሌ ህዝቦች ነጻነት ንቅናቄ(ቤህነን)፣ የጋምቤሊ ህዝቦች ነጻነት ንቅናቄ(ጋህነን)፣ የኦጋዴን ብሄራዊ ነጻነት ግንባር (ኦብነግ)፣ የኦሮሞ ነጻነት ግንባር(ኦነግ) እና የሲዳማ ብሄራዊ ነጻነት ግንባር(ሲብነግ) ተወካዮች፣ በድርጅቶቹ የሴቶችና ወጣቶች ተወካዮች የተመሰረተ ነው። ይህ ትብብር ሰሌጣን ሊይ ያሇውን ኣምባገነን ስርዓት ብማስወገድ ዝቦች መብቶቻቸውን ኣስከብረውና የራሳቸውን እድሌ በራስ የመወሰን መብታቸውን እውን እንዲያዯርጉ በጥንካሬ ይሰራሌ’’። በኢትዮጵያ ኢምፓዬር ውስጥ ያሇው ሁኔታ ከቀን ወዯ ቀን እየከፋ በመሄድ ሊይ ሲሆን፥ በህወሃት/ኢህኣዴግ የሚመራው የሃገሪቷ ኣምባገነን ስርዓት ንጹሃን ዜጎችን ከመሬታቸው ማፈናቀሌን፣ ማንገሊታቱን፣ በህገ-ወጥ ሁኔታ ማሰሩና ሆን ብል በጅምሊ መግዯለን ኣጠናክሯሌ። የመንግስት ጦር ሃይሌና ዯህንነቶች በበርካታ የኣጋሪቱ ኣካባቢዎች በተሊይም ዯግሞ በኦሮሚያ ሰሌፍ በወጡ ዜጎች ሊይ ጥይት አያዘነቡ ነው። ህዝቦች የፖሇቲካ መብቶቻቸዋን መነገፋቸው ባጠቃሊይ በኣያላ የሃገሪቷ ኣካባቢዎች ህዝባዊ ቁጣና ኣመጽን ወሌዶ ጉባኤው እየተወያየ ባሇበት ጊዜ እንኩዋ ኣመጹ እየተካሄዯ ይገኛሌ። የህወሃት/ኢህኣዴግ መንግስት በሰሊማዊ መንገድ እየተካሄዯ ያሇውን ተቃውሞና ኣመጽ ሇማፈን እንዯመፍትሄ ብል አየወሰዯ ያሇው በሰሊማዊ መንገድ ጥያቄ ባቀረቡት ሊይ ኣረመኔያዊ እርምጃ መውሰድና በጦር ኣስተዳዯር ስር ኣስገብቶ እንግሌት መፈጸምን ነው። በተጨማሪም ስርዓቱ እየተጠቀመባቸው ያለት የተሇያዩ ዘግናኝ እርምጃዎች የመንግስቱን ክፋት በግሌጽ ያሳያለ። ህጻናትና ነፍሰ-ጡር ሴቶችን ጨምሮ ንጹሃን ዜጎችን በመግዯሌና ሃይሌ በመጠቀም ከኣያት-ቀድመ ኣያት መሬታቸው ሊይ ማፈናቀለንም ቀጥሎሌ። እያራመዯ ባሇው ህገ-ወጥና ኢ-ሰብዓዊ ድርጊቶች አንዲሁም በሚከተሇው ፖሉሲ ከሃገሪቷ ህዝቦች የበረታ ተቃውሞ ቢካሄድበትም፥ ከኣሇም ማህበረሰብ ውግዘት ቢገጥመውም ስርዓቱ እኩይ ፖሉሲውን ስራ ሊይ ማዋለን አንዯቀጠሇ ነው። ከኣሇምኣቀፍ ኣካሊት የሚያገኘውን እርዳታም እንዯፖሇቲካ መሳሪያ መጠቀሙን ቀጥሎሌ። ይህ የትብብሩ ጠቅሊሊ ጉባዔ በመስራች ኮንፈረሱ ሊይ የተቋቋመው ጊዜያዊ ኮሚቴ ያቀረበውን ሪፖርት ካዳመጠ በኋሊ የኣምስቱም ድርጅቶች ሉቃነመናብርትና የጉባዔው ተካፋዮች የትብብሩ ስራዎች ስኬቶች፣ ድክመቶን፣ እድልችና እንቅፋት ሉሆኑ ይችሊለ በተባለ ሁኔታዎች ሊይ ውይይትና ግምገማ ኣካሂዯዋሌ።

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OMN: Collaborative public forum by Oromo Community of MN March 17, 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, Oromia, Oromo, Oromo and the call for justice and freedom.
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Odaa Oromoo

 

Horn of Africa: Oromia: The Peoples’ Alliance for Freedom and Democracy Statement on the Current Situation in Ethiopia January 11, 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

 

pafdThe current situation in Ethiopia is no longer tenable and unless urgent measures are taken it will bring unmanage-able chaos in the Horn of Africa worse than the current situation in the Middle East.

In 1992 and 1994, the Ethiopian regime declared an all out war against the civilian population in many parts in Oromia, Ogaden and the rest of Ethiopia creating humanitarian and human rights Catastrophe, hundreds of thou-sands were killed, detained, tortured or forcefully dislocated from their lands.Today the Ethiopian regime is embarking on campaign to commit grave violation of human rights and suppression of all democratic rights it even recognizes in its nominal constitution. The Oromo people whose democratic rights were never respected and subjected to consistent human right violations massively are now being systematically uprooted from their ancestral lands around Addis Ababa under the pretext of development. Similar atrocities are being committed against the people in Sidama, Gambela, Beni-shangul, Amhara,and other states.Read more at:

the-peoples_-alliance-for-freedom-and-democracy-statement-on-the-current-situation-in-ethiopia

 

The Ogaden Youth and Student Union condemns the systematic genocidal massacres taking place in Oromia and Ogaden January 5, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
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Odaa OromooFlags of the Oromo and Ogaden people were on display at the May 9 rally in St. Paul, Minnesota

OYSU: A Call to Action in Ending the Crimes Against Humanity in Ethiopia

December 31, 2015

The Ogaden Youth and Student Union condemns the systematic genocidal massacres taking place in Oromia and Ogaden, and stands with student protesters fighting to end the authoritarian regimes policies of mass displacement against the Oromo and Ogaden people.

The current EPRDF regime in Ethiopia continues and has exacerbated the policies of successive authoritarian Ethiopian regimes in the past. The genocidal massacres taking place in the Ogaden is well documented by human rights organizations and has led to the displacement of hundreds of thousands of civilian populations since 2007. The Ethiopian government’s exploitation of natural resources in the Ogaden has led to a dire humanitarian crisis and a worsening armed conflict. The Ogaden region is currently facing the worst drought in history and international humanitarian organizations that have historically provided much needed assistance, such as Doctors Without Borders and the International Red Cross, have been denied access to operate in the region. Government-sponsored militias, known as the Liyuu Police, continue to commit rape, extrajudicial killings, mass arrests, and torture with impunity. Millions of people in the Ogaden are facing one of the worse famines in the world and the international community continues to turn a blind eye.

The gross human rights situation that has been taking place in the Ogaden has now spread all over Ethiopia, mainly in the Oromia and Amhara regions. The EPRDF regime, which is mainly controlled by the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), is now committing mass genocidal campaigns against the Oromo people. We are receiving credible reports of mass arrests, kidnappings and extrajudicial killings taking place in different parts of Oromia. The Ethiopian regime’s current policy of displacing hundreds of thousands of Oromo farmers off their land has led to an uprising led by the Oromo youth. Protesters have spread all over the country and new armed opposition groups have emerged in parts of the Amhara, Afar, and Sidama regions. The Oromo people, who make up nearly half the population of Ethiopia, have been under repression and marginalization by successive Ethiopian regimes in the past. The Oromo people are essential to the future of Ethiopia and can play a fundamental role in the stability or instability of the Horn of Africa. The Ethiopian regime’s ill-advised policies and criminal behavior will lead to a humanitarian crisis in epic proportion if the international community does not intervene.

The Ogaden Youth and Student Union (OYSU) stands in solidarity with the Oromo youth and students who are leading the peaceful protests currently taking place in Ethiopian and have been the main target of rapes, mass arrests, killings, and kidnappings. The Ogaden and Oromo people, not only share a common struggle, but also share a common history of repression and marginalization by successive Ethiopian regimes. We are calling upon both people to unite against the Ethiopian regime, and reclaim freedom and justice for their respective people.

OYSU urges the international community, and mainly Western nations, to put an end to the funding and sponsoring of authoritarianism and genocide in Ethiopia. We urge Western powers, such as the United States and the United Kingdom, to pressure the Ethiopian government to end the gross human rights abuses taking place in Oromia, Ogaden and elsewhere in Ethiopia. We urge international human rights organizations to continue and further their commitment to exposing the genocidal massacres and displacements taking place in these regions. Lastly, we urge international media organizations to shed light on the acts of genocide and crimes against humanity the Ethiopian regime has been committed in the Ogaden, Oromia, and in other regions of the country.

Sanatariin Ameerikaa Oromoof dubbatan; Ambaasaaddiriin Itoophiyaa dhiigaan Oromoo immoo warra Oromoo miidhuuf dhaabbatan. Senator Franken headed to Ethiopia to discuss plight of the Oromos and Somali refugees August 22, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Because I am Oromo.
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Senator Franken headed to Ethiopia to discuss plight of the Oromos and Somali refugees

http://mshale.com/2015/08/21/senator-franken-headed-ethiopia-discuss-plight-oromos-somali-refugees/

(Oromedia, 22 Hagayya 2015) Senatariin Ameerikaa, Al Franken, gara Itoophiyaa deemuuf jiran; imala isaanii keessatti dhimma dhiitinsa mirga namoomaa Oromoo fi Somaalee irratti aangota Itoophiyaa waliin dubbachuuf karoora qaban.

Gabaasa isaa guutuuf: Oromo TV

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STATUTES OF THE PEOPLES’ ALLIANCE FOR FREEDOM AND DEMOCRACY. #Oromia #Ogaden #Sidama #Sheckacho #Africa August 6, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Self determination.
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Oromia

STATUTES OF THE PEOPLES’ ALLIANCE FOR FREEDOM AND DEMOCRACY

PREAMBLE
The Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF),
The Oromo Liberation Front (OLF),
The Sheckacho People’s Movement for Democracy and Justice (SHEPMODSOJ),
The Sidama Liberation Front (SLF)
Hereinafter referred to as the Parties,

Whereas united effort among the oppressed people has become essential in the struggle to stop a continuous and gruesome repression perpetrated by the current regime in Ethiopia,

Recognizing the fact that true and lasting cooperation to fight repression could only exist among the oppressed people and political organization that stand and promote the causes of the people, including genuine and unfettered acceptance of the right of selfdetermination for all peoples in Ethiopia;

Reaffirming their unwavering determination to put an end to the underlying causes of repression, bloodshed, insecurity, political instability and marginalization in Ethiopia and the region, which is inflicting severe hardships and suffering on all…

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Social media factor: Explaining why Somali people quit listening to BBC and VOA Somali Services July 31, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Africa, Internet Freedom, Ogaden, Social Media, Somalia.
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Somalia: Explaining why Somali people quit listening to BBC and VOA Somali Services

By Ahmed Abdi, Ayyaantuu,  News 30 July 2015 

voa

Most of the Somali people have recently started to quit listening to their long-time news provider, BBC Somali Service and news newly-competitor of Voice of America (VOA) Somali Service. 

They lost interest and distrusted them due to the privilege of the recent technology they have gained mainly social media such as Facebook, YouTube, Twitter, Google plus and many other Social media platforms.

If you ask at least six different peoples from different locations for example, Hargeisa, Garowe, Kismayo and Mogadishu they will definitely tell you that they did not listen a week or even months or they did not remember the last time they have listened to them.

Of Course, they will tell you that there is no unmet news coverage that they would need from any of them that they did not hear before. Because the above-mentioned news outlets serves better than BBC and Somali Services. 

Forget about people in Jigjiga and many other place across Ogaden region that the BBC and VOA Somali Services are muted to cover  their regional problems despite the conflicts, famine, human rights violations, social injustice, and underdevelopment.

If they ever do once a year coverage -they avoid mentioning the geographical name, which probably is Ogaden region of Ethiopia due to  the region’s name,named after Ogaden-clan , which makes up the region’s half of its populations. More than 6 million Somali audience members had possibly lost there. 

Moreover, Many of their former clients will tell you that the editors of the two channels’ tribal affiliation led them to distrust and stop listening to the news channels of BBC and VOA Somali Services. Meanwhile, many others complained about their lack of objective and balanced coverage.
 
Let us analyse the changes occurred after all these to learn the difference between now and then.
 
Between 1994-1998, Somali people used to put aside everything in their hands whenever they heard the BBC’s famous music to listen its international and regional news carefully. In the past, villagers, who had no radios used to travel a long distance on foot amid listening the news of the BBC Somali Service  for the nearest possible location available to get its news-possibly walking 14 kilometers away from their own villages. 
 
It is obvious that the BBC had been their source of news reference as well their only reliable dictionary in terms of every disputed divination of Somali world. You see, its former Somali reporters had knowledge when it comes to their regional dialects and Somali literary language. 
 
People used to make their appointment-hours the times of the BBC Somali Service be on air i.e specific hours of the morning, afternoon, and evening that is usually devoted to listening to it. This is an  indication of how people’s lives were more connected to its programs before. In these hours, crowds of Somalis assembling in a bid to listen to the news of the BBC Somali Service. 
Even there was a time, the only available program about Africa including Somalia was Wednesdays. It was BBC Somali Service, which people made a place to return for their disputed sources. And nobody could dispute a news said it is a source of BB Somali Service. The time has changed, so have BBC Somali reporters. 
 
People VOA Somali Service is believed to have been created to compete with the Somali people’s traditional news outlet, BBC Somali Service, after the U.S’s interest of Somalia affairs grew following the U.S-led invasion of Somalia in 1992 ad the U.S’s war on terror as well as the United States fear of China’s East Africa penetration amid the U.S rival’s demand of Africa’s Natural resources to pave its way of being a super-power. 
 
The time that VOA Somali Service aired its first programs was welcomed by the mass and many BBC’s longtime clients turned to VOA Somali Service and it became more popular in every corner of the five-pointed white star of Somali flag represents i.e every place that Somali-Speaking community could be found.
 
But unfortunately, a media that most of the Somalis mistakenly assumed  a role model, a sign of good era, however, turned to be null and void after it has lost  its values, which probably means compromising its impartiality. 
 
Several things are supposed to be the reason for the decline of the BBC and VOA Somali listeners including the lack of quality reporters compared to the past reporters that devoted to literature and were rich in their Somali language and their own culture when addressing Somalis, who are culturally rich in oral tradition and have zero-tolerance for such unskilled presenters. 
 
It is obvious that many factors contributed to the disappointment of their audience members including their less quality programs for the result of hiring their new reporters based on evaluation of their knowledge of the English language rather than Somali language and regional knowledge as well as  favouring one tribe against another, one politician against another and/or one region against another.

Ethiopia’s poverty reduction – who benefits? February 20, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Amnesty International's Report: Because I Am Oromo, Corruption in Africa, Ethiopia the least competitive in the Global Competitiveness Index, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Free development vs authoritarian model, Uncategorized.
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OEthiopia poverty reduction

 

Tigray first

The answer is clear: it is the people of Tigray, whose party, the TPLF led the fight against the Mengistu regime and took power in 1991, who benefited most. What is also striking is that the Oromo (who are the largest ethnic group) hardly benefited at all.

This is what the World Bank says about this: “Poverty reduction has been faster in those regions in which poverty was higher and as a result the proportion of the population living beneath the national poverty line has converged to around one in 3 in all regions in 2011.”

The World Bank does little to explain just why Tigray has done (relatively) so well, but it does point to the importance of infrastructure investment and the building of roads. It also points to this fact: “Poverty rates increase by 7% with every 10 kilometers from a market town. As outlined above, farmers that are more remote are less likely to use agricultural inputs, and are less likely to see poverty reduction from the gains in agricultural growth that are made. The generally positive impact of improvements in infrastructure and access to basic services such as education complements the evidence for Ethiopia that suggests investing in roads reduces poverty.”

Not surprisingly, the TPLF under Prime Minister Meles Zenawi and beyond concentrated their investment on their home region – Tigray. The results are plain to see.

martinplaut

The World Bank has just published an authoritative study of poverty reduction in Ethiopia. The fall in overall poverty has been dramatic and is to be greatly welcomed. But who has really benefited?

This is the basic finding:

In 2000 Ethiopia had one of the highest poverty rates in the world, with 56% of the population living on less than US$1.25 PPP a day. Ethiopian households experienced a decade of remarkable progress in wellbeing since then and by the start of this decade less than 30% of the population was counted as poor.

There are of course many ways of answering the question – “who benefited” – were they men or women, urban or rural people. All these approaches are valid.

The Ethnic Dimension

But in Ethiopia, where Ethic Federalism has been the primary driver of government policy one cannot ignore the ethnic dimension.

Here this graph is particularly telling:

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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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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

Oromia: The Ethiopian Empire Formation And Its consequences On The #Oromo And Beyond. #Africa January 16, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Afar, Agaw people, Boran Oromo, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Ethiopian Empire, Ethnic Cleansing, Mursi, National Self- Determination, Ogaden, OLF, Oromia, Oromiyaa, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, The Tyranny of Ethiopia.
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“…The sustained and bloody campaign of Minilik resulted in the cutting of limps of men of all ages, breasts of women of the Arssi Oromos, which many Oromo Anthropologists, historians and the elderly equate it to the genocide committed against the Armenians by the Ottman Turks Empire during the First World War, in which over a million Armenians were killed.”

The Ethiopian Empire Formation And Its consequences On The Oromo And Beyond

By Bakkalcho Barii 

With the help of the then three colonial powers, Minilik, the Abyssinian king managed to break and conquer the Oromo Country and beyond in the last two decades of the nineteenth century. Following this war of conquest, the invading Abyssinian colonial army not only committed genocide on the entire Oromo, Walita, Sidama, and other people, but also, committed cultural, historical, social,and economic genocides in this new frontiers by imposing Abyssinian culture, language, way of life, administrations, and religion. These crimes were committed by presenting anything Abyssinian as superior to the languages, cultures, system of governance of the new colonies, as Europeans did practice when they conquered vast territories in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.  

Thanks to their heroes and heroines, the Oromo and the Southern people begun the journey of re-claiming what istheirs and re-writing their own history. Like other Empires in history, the Ethiopian Empire shall collapse by the subjected people, on which it has been built on, and that processes of de-colonization and the wheel of freedom is marching forward with full gear so that those subject nations shall claim their due place among the free nations of the world. The late P.T.W Baxter spent much of his time studying mainly the Boran and the Arssi Oromos. Paul Baxter documented and wrote many research books and articles on the Oromo way of life, their Gada system of governance and their experiences under the Ethiopian empire after the Minlik colonial army managed to conquer much of the Oromo land and the Southern nations by default and with the help of the then European Colonial powers, the French, the British and the Italians.

In his research article titled “Ethiopia’s Unacknowledged Problem: The Oromo” (July 1978) wrote the following; “Each of the Oromo peoples has a distinctive history but all shared comparable experiences; ……….perhaps I may select a few observed by myself in Arssi to illustrate some common types of Oromo experience under Abyssinian rule. …… The Arssi and the Oromo Country beyond were finally subjugated by Shoan gun power in 1887 after six different annual campaigns which R.H Kofi Darkwa, the Ghanaian historian of Menilek reign, summarizes as “perhaps the most sustained and the most bloody war which Menilek undertook.”

The above description of the sustained and bloody campaign of Minilik resulted in the cutting of limps of men of all ages, breasts of women of the Arssi Oromos, which many Oromo Anthropologists, historians and the elderly equate it to the genocide committed against the Armenians by the Ottman Turks Empire during the First World War, in which over a million Armenians were killed.

Paul Baxter and John Hinnant, who both studied the Arssi, the Boran and the Guji Oromos in the 1960s, summarized the experiences of those Oromos under conquest as the following: “The Arssi described their conquest by Abyssinians as the commencement of an era of miseries, since which life has not run as God intended it but out of true”.  “The Boran likewise divided their history into two eras, before and after, the first of which was good and the second bad” to describe what colonization has brought upon them.

Similarly, John Hinnant described the experiences of the Guji Oromos as tending “to blame all social problems on their incorporation into the Ethiopian empire.”  The above feelings and humiliation expressed and felt by the Boran, the Arssi and the Guji Oromos are the same as the feelings and humiliation felt by the Oromos of the Wollo, the Rayya, the Karayu, the Ittu, the Leqa, the Mecha, and the Tulama.

One would always ask how successive Abyssinians regimes managed to rule over the Southern nations, including the Oromo’s (currently known as the subjects or colonies), who constitute more than two-third of the entire populations of the Ethiopian Empire for so long?

The precise answer to the above question was given by Paul Baxter in his article “Ethiopia’s Unacknowledged Problem: The Oromo, in which he says “ The absolute political domination and cultural dominance of the Amhara ( now the Tigres), has resulted in the public presentation of Ethiopia as a state with a much more unitary culture than , in fact, it has. Even scholars have come to accept Ethiopia at the evaluation of its own sophisticated and charming elite.”

The current Tigrian elites copied their Amhara elite’s, their predecessors, in presenting their Empire as a unitary and at peace with itself while waging unprecedented war of genocide on the Oromo people and other nations. They (both the Amhara & Tigre elites) hired foreign PR companies, influential individuals, and lobbyists in Western capitals and political corridors to maintain their marginalization of the Oromos and the Southern people, and present their Empire at peace with itself at the expense and misery of the subject people.

Of all the Abyssinian regimes, the current TPLF regime can only be equated with that of Minilik rule because TPLF rulers, like Minilik openly declared the entire Oromo people as the enemy of the state, and placed them in open concentration camps, in parallel with what the Nazi Germany inflicted on the Jewish communities of Europe during the Second World War.

The question many Oromos and friends of Oromos raise is Why is it the current rulers of the Empire (the TPLF), and their unprecedented scale of human rights violations and abuses on the Oromos is different from the past three regimes of the Empire rulers?

Unlike the past three regimes, who rose from the Amahric speaking Abyssinians, the TPLF originates from a minority Tigre region, which comprises only about five percent of the current Ethiopian Empire population, and was junior partners or foot-soldiers with the invading Minilik army during a war of conquest and expansion of the Abyssinian Empire towards the south.

Secondly, the TPLF rose from a century old power struggle with its close kin, the Amharas, who defeated the Tigre king Yohannes IV. In other words, the TPLF came to power not only to rule over the Empire but also to avenge their century old wounds against their kin, the Amharas. Thirdly, TPLF’s cleverly learnt the shortcomings of the Amaharas rulers over the colonies and, for the first time in the history of the Empire forcefully accepted the existence of independent nations like the Oromo’s, and allowed some form of self-rule and the use of their languages in office and schools.

However, when it comes to responding to the  democratic and justice demands of the Oromo for total liberation from alien rulers, TPLF created satellite organizations who speak the languages of the indigenous population and used them as a Trojan horses to kidnap, harass, kill, displace and jail thousands of innocent Oromo for only demanding their country Oromia be free, and it is only the Oromos as owners and custodians of their Country Oromia, who shall decide their future relationships with neighbouring countries, including the Abyssinian themselves.  According to official reports by Amnesty International, Oromia Support Group and other local human rights bodies, currently there are close to 45,000 innocent Oromo prisoners of conscience in different TPLF concentration camps.

Finally, the event of the September the 11th, 2001, in which thousands of innocent American lives were lost by a global terrorist organization called Al-Qaida. This horrific incident played well in the hands of TPLF rulers and exploited to receive billions of dollars and military aid in the name of fighting Islamic extremism in the region, but in actual facts to crash its opponents by bullying and invading neighbouring countries of the region with the tacit support of the Western powers.

The late TPLF ruler, Meles Zenawi loudly and clearly declared on many occasions that, TPLF conquered the Empire’s power by the barrel of guns, and, therefore, it can only be forced out of power by those who can use the same tactics. This reminded me of that famous saying “Power never gives up by will” but only by force.

The current minority regime of the TPLF hell-bent on not only committing unprecedented human rights atrocities against the Oromos and other nations in the South, its determinations to displace millions of Oromo from their ancestral land and selling those lands at the lowest bid to its foreign backers, destroy their forests by clearing in the name of development, and expose current and future generations of Oromos and the southern nations to environmental genocide shall have huge implications for the years to come.

The challenge for the Oromos and the people of the South is that the old guards, who conquered and built the Ethiopian Empire are so desperate and furious for losing the Empire to their junior partners, and making everything they  can to re-claim their lost glory in the name of united Ethiopia, one vote and individual democratic rights slogans. These old guards of the Empire are barking and pulling their hair inside and outside of the country to undo the symbolic self-rule that is currently in-place that successive Oromo generations earned by much blood and sacrifice.

As one of my favourite young broadcaster, journalist and poet Abdi Fixe recently put on his comment regarding the fire that destroyed the Taitu Hotel in Finfinnee, “ where were these people who were so enraged by the burning of a hotel, for which the cause of the fire is not known yet, and silent when the TPLF Agazi militia murdered over seventy Oromo University students at Ambo and other Universities across Oromia for peacefully demonstrating against the expansion of Finfinnee? Where were these people when TPLF Agazi army carried out mass murder on the people of the Gambella, Sidama? Where were these people when TPLF deliberately burned Forests across all over Oromia?

In fact, they were cheering and clapping from the side when and every time TPLF carries-out their dirty work and some of them even could not hide their hatred towards the Oromos, the Gambellas, the Sidamas, and went on air and different social Medias in support of TPLF’s dirty deeds against the Oromo and the South. For Oromo and Southern compatriots in the Diasporas, keep it up the pressure on TPLF’s backers not to fund and support this in-humane and autocratic regime by coordinating your resources and hiring PR groups, lobbyists on behalf of your people back in the Empire, by collecting facts and figures of human rights violations that were committed and going to be committed, and expose them to governments and agencies in the West not to support this brutal regime diplomatically, financially and militarily.

Describing why the Oromo demand for statehood has not received news coverage in the West, despite the problem of the Oromo has been a major and central one in the Ethiopian Empire ever since it was created by Minilk in the last two decades of the 19th Century, Paul Baxter attributes the failings of the Western media for failing to cover this major issue due to two major factors:  The first factor was all “the difficulties the Ethiopian Empire has been enduring were the conflicts in the north and eastern frontiers ( with Eritrea and Somalia), which were fairly reported due to their accessibility to foreign reporters, coupled with the interests of the Great Powers and their satellites have been involved”.  “The second factor for the under-coverage or total absence of covering the Oromo and the Ethiopian Empire conflicts was the absolute political domination and cultural dominance of the Amhara has resulted in the public presentation of Ethiopia as a state with a much more unitary culture than, in fact, it has. Even some Western and “African Scholars” have come to accept Ethiopia at the evaluation of its own sophisticated and charming elite.”  There is one last myth or propaganda both the Abyssinian camps are using as a last resort to foil the total liberation of Oromos and the Southern people, including the Ogadenian Somali brothers, who have similar aspirations being free from Abyssinian domination. This last myth or propaganda currently waged and used by both Abyssinian camps are puffing out “is if Oromia shall become independent, their neighbouring Nations such as Sidama, Walita, Kambata, Hadiya, Harari & Somali will be dominated or even cease to exist as a people.

This is a complete myth used as a last resort to delay the inevitable liberation of Oromia and other nations indicated above. We Oromos, have lived peacefully and protected these nations to maintain their way of life, languages, culture, religious practices, and we have been living with these nations for thousands of years.  Imagine if these nations were bordering either the Amhara or Tigre Abyssinians? Their fate would have very similar to the Wollo Oromos who were forced to be Amharized and the Rayya Oromos, who were forced to abandon their language and history to be Tigre speaking people. Above all, we Oromos share common way of life and share closer kinship with our neighbours unlike what the Empire rulers try to portray.

One last message to my Oromo and the Southern compatriots to support their political and media organizations to shed lights and expose the chronic human rights violations perpetrated by successive Abyssinian regimes, so that their people back home shall rise and get rid-off them once and for all for peace to reign in that part of Africa. Strengthening and empowering Oromo Media Organizations will fill this void and the under-reporting of Oromo and the southern people conflicts with the Ethiopian Empire.

Let me quote the late P.T.W. Baxter and conclude my message:

“……But the efflorescence of feelings of common nationhood and aspirations for self-determination among the cluster of peoples who speak Oromo has not been much commented upon. Yet the problem of the Oromo people as has been a major and central one in the Ethiopian Empire ever since it was created by Minilik in the last two decades of the nineteenth century. If the Oromo people only obtain a portion of the freedoms which they seek then the balance of political power in Ethiopia will be completely altered. If the Oromo act with unity they must necessarily constitute a powerful force. ………..If an honest and free election was held ( an Unlikely event) and the people voted by ethnic blocks, as experience of elections elsewhere in Africa suggests that they well might do, then around half the votes would be cast by Oromo for the Oromo…”

May Waqaa Bless our forefathers, fathers, mothers, brothers and sisters who paid the ultimate price for the dignity of the Oromo People and the southern nations.

Bakkalcho Barii

This article is originally published in  ayyaantuu.com

http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/the-ethiopian-empire-formation-and-its-consequences-on-the-oromo-and-beyond/

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UNPO: Updated Report on the Persecution of Ogaden People in Ethiopia. #Africa January 8, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Africa, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Ethnic Cleansing, Ogaden.
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In recent years the Ogaden people in Eastern Ethiopia have increasingly suffered various human rights abuses as the Ethiopian State continues its mission of ethnic oppression.

These violations of human rights often compound the current humanitarian crisis that is developing in the region; with foreign aid funds supporting a state that actively deters humanitarian organisations from operating in the Ogaden region.

To help increase awareness about the worsening situation for the Ogaden people, UNPO has published a background report outlining some of the major human rights that currently exist.

This report focuses on many of the Ogaden people’s civil and political rights that have been violated by the Ethiopian Government, and puts them into the broader context of the general state of human rights compliance throughout the whole country.

Cause for serious concern continues to be the suppression of the free media and freedom of expression within Ethiopia. Silencing those willing to voice concerns of state suppression means that the outside world is never likely to know the full scale of rights violations that are taking place within the country.

Of further concern to international law is the occurrence of extra-territorial activity of the Ethiopian State in both targeting political opposition and persecuting the Ogaden people. The fact that these actions have now begun to span borders makes it even harder to encourage transparency on the issues.

Source: http://unpo.org/article/17831

For a full copy of the report click here.   UNPO Ogaden 2015 Report

The battle for Africa’s food future June 3, 2014

Posted by OromianEconomist in Africa, Africa Rising, African Poor, Agriculture, Climate Change, Colonizing Structure, Food Production, No to land grabs in Oromia, No to the Addis Ababa Master Plan, NO to the Evictions of Oromo Nationals from Finfinnee (Central Oromia), Omo Valley, Oromia, Poverty, The Colonizing Structure & The Development Problems of Oromia.
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Odaa OromooProfessor Abukutsa-Onyango with giant Amaranthus at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology

The scale of foreign agribusiness on African soil could soon change how what we eat is grown, but also what we eat. The livelihoods of small-scale farmers hang in the balance. But a counter movement is forming. Meet three warrior queens battling for Africa’s food future.

Tanzania’s Janet Maro, who is teaching people the principles of chemical-free growing, intercropping and more. Photo © Peter Lüthi, Biovision

Tanzania’s Janet Maro, who is teaching people the principles of chemical-free growing, intercropping and more. Photo © Peter Lüthi, Biovision

Africa is at a tipping point – soon the scale of foreign agribusiness on African soil could change who owns vast tracts of land, how food is grown there and what the average person will consume. The livelihoods of small-scale farmers who work family farms, which still make up 80 per cent of Africa’s farms, hang in the balance.

The major actors in this drama are unsurprising: Monsanto, Unilever, Diageo, Cargill and their peers. All have identified sub-Saharan African, with its fertile lands and budding consumer markets, as a place of great opportunity, rich for the picking – African countries are not referred to as ‘frontier economies’ by the West for nothing. Many African governments have signed up to this agenda. Some buy into the notion that large scale agribusiness will bring food security, others that it will bring their country economic growth, others still are just content with the short-term financial gain that such investment often brings.

(On that concept of ‘food security’, it’s worth pointing out that between 1991 and 2011 sub-Saharan African food production increased 10 per cent per person, yet in the same decade there was a 40 per cent increase in the number of undernourished people…)

So if the political representatives of these countries will not man the barricades, who will? The good news is that, while many of the youth of Africa have joined in the clamour for KFC and Subway and see fast food as a way of belonging to global (or American) culture, others are forming movements to protect and promote real food.

“I ask them do they like beer? Beer is bitter too, but they drink that…”

While in Western economies, the consumption of fast food is often seen as a sign of poverty, and organic, fresh food a sign of middle-class identity, in many African economies it is the other way round. Your ability to stump up the cash for a junk food ‘brand’ is a sign of membership of what is in numerical terms still a small elite, whereas the cash-poor and rural dwellers will tend to a healthier diet of, for example, beans and maizemeal.

Beside the socio-economic picture, there is also the threat of climate change, already being felt clearly in many parts of Africa in the form of flooding, drought and desertification. Large-scale agribusiness with synthetic inputs would likely exacerbate the situation – whereas Africa still has the chance to lead by forward-thinking example. If there is anywhere in the world with the opportunity to combine natural, small-scale food production and distribution with clean technology, it’s this fertile continent.

Three female food warriors taking centre stage in this battle are Kenya’s Professor Mary Abukutsa-Onyango, Tanzania’s Janet Maro and South Africa’s Mariam Mayet. Between them they are teaching the health benefits of Africa’s own indigenous plants, promoting the advantages of organic agriculture, and fighting the incursions of the multinationals into Africa.

Professor Mary Abutukutsa-Onyango is professor of horticulture at Jomo Kenyatta University in Kenya.

Professor Abukutsa-Onyango has been advocating the consumption of indigenous African plants for two decades now. She says Africans have forgotten about some of the local plants that offer the greatest nutrition of all – such as jute mallow, spider plant and amaranthus. These plants offer a health kick that makes spinach look about as nutritious as chips, she explains.

Professor Abukutsa-Onyango with giant Amaranthus at Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology

It hasn’t always been easy persuading people to eat up their greens, and for her first decade she faced an uphill battle. But now her work is gaining recognition (she recently won the prestigious Edinburgh Medal for Science and is an Elder of the Order of the Burning Spear in Kenya). She has written recipes so that people can experiment with these plants at home, a commercial seed company is stocking the seeds for the first time, and she’s hoping that these varieties will finally catch on and become mainstream. “People sometimes complain that they are bitter,” she laughs, “but I ask them do they like beer? Beer is bitter too, but they drink that…”

“The truth is that when we were colonised the white folk came with their own foods and we abandoned our own foods, but with time we realised that there was something special about them.”

If she has her way an indigenous food revolution is on its way, and those with green fingers might like to try growing and cooking these plants themselves.

Janet Maro is the founder of Sustainable Agriculture Tanzania.

At 26, Janet Maro may be relatively young but she is making a serious impact. A former agriculture student herself, she identified a need for farmers to be trained in organic agriculture in order for them to be independent and have food sovereignty – choice and control over their own food production. Telling the tale of the first group of farmers that she went to visit in a bid to prevent deforestation and slash-and-burn practices, she sadly jokes that they didn’t believe she was for real, because she hiked to see them rather than turning up in a fancy vehicle.

Janet Fares Maro and Aurelian Chuma from Sustainable Agriculture Tanzania (SAT) together with Rashid Mdoka who is doing his research on plant teas in the SAT demonstration garden at Tushikamane Centre

She runs a residential centre near Morogoro for farmers (and others interested in organic farming) where people can be taught the principles of chemical-free growing, intercropping and more. Like Professor Abukutsa-Onyango she has found several plants in her work with interesting nutritional, medicinal or farming uses.

While her work is positive and rewarding, she’s not afraid to emphasise the negative – for example, the issue of village land that has been used by families for generations being allocated for foreign investment, as formal proof of ownership does not exist in these unsurveyed areas. Kilombero and Ifakara, home of Tanzania’s most famous rice, are cases in point, she says, and she’s concerned that the future of the rice and those who farm it is in jeopardy as much of this land has now been demarcated for investment.

“In most parts of Tanzania, people depend on farming, whether it’s subsistence or they make money from it. If they don’t have land to cultivate and grow food then what else will they do to feed themselves and make some income? Maybe they will have to move to the cities, where there is unemployment because there aren’t enough industries for people to work in, and an investor for sure will come with his tractors and harvesters and planters. These all need skills, but what about a farmer who cannot read or write? Who will give him an opportunity?”

Mariam Mayet is the executive director of the African Centre for Biosafety in South Africa.

Since the late 1990s, Mayet has been campaigning against genetically modified seeds and food, and she set up the African Centre for Biosafety to fight the introduction of GMOs in South Africa as well as monitoring the development of policy elsewhere on the continent.

South Africa, unlike most other African countries, is already far down the line when it comes to the industrialisation of agriculture. “Just a few big boys get to play in the system, giving them a lot of power over what is available on the market at what prices,” says Mayet. What are the solutions? They’re complex, she says, but include access to land and water as a fundamental. There is also a need to help smallholders collectively break the stranglehold of the big supermarket chains. Often persecuted urban street vendors can actually be key to making fresh, local produce available to those who commute or work long hours.

It seems odd that food, such a central part of our lives, and farming, such a core African livelihood, have taken such a low political profile. Where they are talked about, the concept of ‘food security’ is being used as a Trojan horse to persuade many nations to swallow the pill of land takeovers by foreign firms and pressure on small-scale farmers to adopt GM seed and chemical fertilisers to fill the coffers of their makers and IP owners.

Mariam Mayet

Says Mayet: “We see the New Alliance and AGRA as principal ways for large corporations to secure new profits in Africa while laying the burden for infrastructural and institutional development on African states, allowing them to come in and annihilate African-owned agricultural systems virtually risk-free. All in the name of philanthropy.”

Going back to Professor Abukutsa-Onyango, by far the most established of the three, having been honoured in Kenya and won African Union and international prizes, even she is scathing about these developments:

In Western economies, organic food is a sign of middle-class identity; in African economies it is the other way round

“This New Alliance is something we look at with great caution in Africa. These multinationals when they come in… in Africa, agriculture is a livelihood and not just a business. If you deny African farmers the ability to do what they need to do by bringing in multinationals, they will take over their livelihoods. Secondly, if you do not allow the farmers to grow what they want you going to end their food sovereignty – if you give them this crop and tell them to grow it, that’s not what we want, we want diversity… I want African governments not to give leeway to the multinationals.”

But have these corporations won the PR battle in Africa? Says Mayet: “To a large extent they have [won], their story of ‘progress’ and their ‘one-size-fits-all’ quick fix philosophy is very compelling. However they will always come undone at some point because they fail to understand just how differently agriculture works in Africa and that food is not solely a commodity but agriculture is embedded in culture and social cohesion.”

“Their neat plans and intellectual property regimes are going to be severely tested in the reality of African food production. The other issue is that industrial agriculture is capital intensive and the vast majority of farmers will simply never be involved in these projects.” Read more @http://thisisafrica.me/warrior-queens-battle-africas-food-future/

Make Ogaden Accessible US House Urges Ethiopia April 24, 2014

Posted by OromianEconomist in Aannolee and Calanqo, Africa Rising, African Poor, Aid to Africa, Colonizing Structure, Corruption, Free development vs authoritarian model, Human Rights, Janjaweed Style Liyu Police of Ethiopia, Land and Water Grabs in Oromia, Land Grabs in Africa, Ogaden, OMN, Omo, Omo Valley, Oromia, Oromia Support Group, Oromian Voices, Oromiyaa, Oromo, Oromo the Largest Nation of Africa. Human Rights violations and Genocide against the Oromo people in Ethiopia, Self determination, Sidama, Slavery, State of Oromia, The Colonizing Structure & The Development Problems of Oromia, The Tyranny of Ethiopia.
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The U.S House of Representatives and the government of United Kingdom plus EU Parliament and United Nations have recently stepped up a campaign to help Somalis from Ogaden region to realize that their voice has been heard by the International Community after decades of virtually silent.

As UK’s government recently released a report indicating allegations of abuses by the Liyu Police or “Special Police”,which London expressed its concerns,United States House of Representatives and EU Parliament have both sent strong messages to Addis Ababa,which was meant to open the Somali religion of Ogaden to the humanitarian agencies and International media to have free access to avoid further humanitarian crisis.

The U.S Congress issued a message which eventually published on Somalilandsun that reads:

The US House of Representatives has asked Ethiopia to Permit Human Rights and Humanitarian Organizations Access to its Somali region of Ogaden. The House informed (d) ETHIOPIA. “That Funds appropriated by this Act that are available for assistance for Ethiopian military and police forces shall not be made available unless the Secretary of State–
(A) certifies to the Committees on Appropriations that the Government of Ethiopia is implementing policies to–
(i) protect judicial independence; freedom of expression, association, assembly, and religion; the right of political opposition parties, civil society organizations, and journalists to operate without harassment or interference; and due process of law; and (ii) permit access to human rights and humanitarian organizations to the Somali region of Ethiopia; and (B) submits a report to the Committees on Appropriations on the types and amounts of United States training and equipment proposed to be provided to the Ethiopian military and police including steps to ensure that such assistance is not provided to military or police personnel or units that have violated human rights, and steps taken by the Government of Ethiopia to investigate and prosecute members of the Ethiopian military and police who have been credibly alleged to have violated such rights.”http://somalilandsun.com/index.php/world/4945-make-ogaden-accessible-us-house-urges-ethiopia


The EU’s head of International Unit Party Socialist democrat,Anna Gomes,MEP said “Ethiopia is one of the largest humanitarian and development aid receiver yet these donations are used incorrectly and corruptly. Western governmental Organizations and Western Embassies to Addis Ababa ignored the stolen donations and humanitarian aid that are being used as a political tool by the Ethiopian regime, which is contrary to EU rules on the funding”.http://www.tesfanews.net/eu-holds-discussion-on-ethiopian-human-rights-crisis-in-ogaden-and-kality-prison/
Ulvskog, MEP,in her part when she was speaking about the steps needed to be taken in order to stop the human rights abuses that is being committed against Ethiopian and Ogaden civilians, she said that the EU could use sanctions or words against Ethiopia or follow up documents and information like the one provided by Ogadeni whistle-blower, Abdullahi Hussein,who smuggled out one-hundred-hours filmed footage, to show the reality in the ground.

The UK government’s website said last week that there have been many reports of mistreatment associated with the Special police,including torture and executions of villagers accused of supporting the Ogade n National Liberation Front.

“The UK government and the UN have pressed the Ethiopian government to articulate a reform plan for the Special police.The Ethiopian government has agreed this is needed,so we will encourage them to take action”,added the report.https://www.gov.uk/government/case-studies/country-case-study-ethiopia-justice-and-treatment-in-detention

The Rights Groups such as Human Rights Watch,Amnesty International and Genocide Watch have accused of Ethiopia that it has committed war crimes and crimes against humanity in Ogaden region.The ONLF accuses Addis Ababa similar charges of egregious human rights abuses against Somali civilians in the region.

John Holmes, The highest UN Official to visit Somali Region of Ogaden in part of its fact finding mission,since the Ethiopian crackdown (2007) called on a further investigation,a plan to wait its implementation until now.

Somali people of Ogaden Region,who has been deplored the international Community’s inaction and silence,when it comes to human rights violations committed at Ogaden region could now feel that they have been heard as the International Community including U.S,UK,EU and United Nations are ready to take action against those committed war crimes and crimes against humanity yet believe that they can get away with it.

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Stop Clearing Oromo from their Land in the Name of Boosting Economic Development: Who Will Stand for the Oromo People Living on the Outskirts of Finfinnee? February 11, 2014

Posted by OromianEconomist in Aannolee and Calanqo, Africa, African Poor, Aid to Africa, Climate Change, Colonizing Structure, Corruption, Culture, Development, Dictatorship, Domestic Workers, Economics, Economics: Development Theory and Policy applications, Environment, Ethnic Cleansing, Finfinnee, Food Production, Gadaa System, Human Rights, Human Traffickings, Humanity and Social Civilization, ICC, Ideas, 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, Nubia, Ogaden, Omo, Oromia, Oromo, Oromo Culture, Oromo First, 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, Sirna Gadaa, Slavery, The Tyranny of Ethiopia, Uncategorized, Youth Unemployment.
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It is to be recalled that Finfinnee (Addis Ababa) was founded as the present capital city the so called Ethiopian in 1886 by a man called Minilik II. During this time, the area was inhabited by the Oromo people and the area was almost covered with natural forest. Initially the Shawa government made it seat at Ankober. Hence, before the founding of Finfinee as a political and economic capital of the king, all the areas within the present Finfinnee and the surround areas was free like any other Oromia lands. However, after 1886 the Semitic people from the northern segments and others had taken the land and the Oromo people who were used to live in these areas were forced lost their land through time.

For example, according to Central Statistics Agency of Ethiopia (2007) Out of the 2,738,248 100% total population living in Finfinnee, the total number of the Oromo people living in the city was only 534,255 (19.51%). Since its founding as a capital, Finfinnee remained the capital city for the successive Ethiopian regimes (Menilik II, Lij Eyassu, Zawuditu, Hailesillasse I, Mengistu, Melles and HaileMariam). Through time, the number of inhabitants increased and urbanization expanded greatly. The deliberate and implicitly planned mission and decision of the Semitic people to erase any sign of Oromo history from Finfinnee was started during the forcefully integration of Oromo people into Ethiopia as second-class citizens and the process has continued in the present government.

Different people mostly from the northern part of the so called Ethiopia have come from the various ethnic groups come and settled in the capital owing to its supper suitable agro-climatic and exploit the natural within the outside today’s Finfinne from the near distance in the name of work and investment. Where did those Oromo farmers go when Finfinnee became the property of new invaders? Be in mind that the Oromo’s are pushed to the peripheral areas of the capital and the number of Oromo people inhabitants decreased from time to time, as the above data depicts. The indigenous people of the land were pushed out one after the other and were replaced by the invaders from the north. What is happening to the Oromo people living on the outskirt of Finfinne today? It is simply the continuation of a process, which had resulted in a massive displacement of an indigenous Oromo people.

B. The New Master Plan of Fifinnee and Areas to be Incorporated

For the last 100 or so years the Master Plan of Finfinnee city was revised several times. The recent proposal of preparing new Master Plan for City administration that planned to incorporates all the towns and districts lying within the range of 1 hour commuting distance from the Finfinnee, justifies the blatant violation of the constitution and their voracious appetite to systematically replacing resource and land deficient people to these fertile lands owned by the Oromo people. According to the proposed plan of established the “Integrated Regional Development Plan”, an additional 36 towns and 17 districts currently administered by the Oromia regional State will be merged with Finfinnee so that the right of the land use will be determined by the central mayor .

The new Master Plan was intended to incorporate Oromia’s land locating in 100kms around the Finfinnee city. According to Ethiopia Government preparation, the following 36 Towns and 17 Districts are included in the newly planned Master plan. (See the figure 1.)

Some of the Towns are: Adama, Sodere, Mojo, Wenji Adama, Ejere, Alem Tena, Koka, Adulala, Bushoftu, Dukem, Gelen, Akaki Beseka, Godino, Chefe Donsa, Sebeta , Sendafa, Milkewa, Wendoda, Sirti, Duber,Gorfo, Chancho, Mulo, Debra,Muger , Ulo, Adis Alem, Holota, Burayu,Debre Genet, Illu Teji, Tefki, Sebeta, Boneya, Melka Kunture and etc.
Some of the Districts areas are: Adama, Dodota, Bora, Lome, Liben chukala, Adea (around Bushoftu), Akaki, Gimbichu, Bereh(around Sebeta), Aleltu, Jida, Sulultu, Ejere, Welmera, Illu, Sebeta Hawas and etc.
Today, when the world is concerned about preserving ecology and wild life in their natural habitat, it is an Ethiopian Government that is clearing an indigenous Oromo people from their home Land in the name of inequitable Economic Development. Hence, who should stand and speak for these innocent people and argue to preserve the right of the extremely vulnerable Oromo people living in the proposed territories and to preserve the indigenous Oromo people, culture, Languages and etc. Otherwise sooner than latter these great people will be marginalized and lost their identities.

Finfinee
Figure 1: The newly Developed and proposed Master Plan of the tomorrow’s Finfinne over the coming 25 years

C. The Agenda behind the “Integrated Regional Development Plan (IRDP)”

An office called “Addis Ababa and the surrounding Oromia Integrated Development Plan” prepared an International and National Conference on June 2013 at Adama Town, Galma Abba Gadaa. The Objective of organizing the conference of the top ranking government cadres (mostly OPDO’s) was to work on the manifesting of the proposed Integrated Regional Development Plan (IRDP) and prepare the cadre’s to work on the people.

On the Conference, it was stated that, the Purposes of the “IRDP” are:

Instrumental to unleashing Regional Development Potentials
Enables localities addressing their mutual development challenges
Enables localities addressing their mutual development challenges
Strengthens complementarities and interconnection of localities
These purposes can be the explicit or clear objectives of the plan. However, the plan have hidden or implicit agenda. Systematically bringing the land under their custody so that, it will sooner or later scramble among their impoverished people in their region. For example, the Finfinnee City Administration and Finfinnee Special Zone can address their mutual development challenges without being incorporated into one master plan. However, the Master plan is not prepared on mutual benefit as the plan is solely prepared by Finfinnee City Administration, despite the name of the office. Hence, though development is boldly emphasized, the main purpose seems to clear the Oromo farmers from their lands in the name of unfair Economic Development.

It was also stated that the Pillars of the Integrated Regional Development Plan are:

Regional Infrastructure Networks
Natural Resource and Environment Stewardship
Cross – Boundary Investments/ e.g FDI)
Joint Regional Projects
However, there seem hidden agenda behind these pillars. For example, in the name of cross-Boundary Investments, local Oromo farmers are going to lose their land for the so-called “investors” and under the pretext of promoting national economy through FDI initiatives In addition, if the plan is going to be realized natural and environmental degradation is inevitable.

In addition, the Basic Principles of the Integrated Regional Development Plan are:

Ensuring Mutual Benefits
A joint development Framework – not a substitute for local plans
An Integrated Regional Plan voluntarily accepted by participating partners
Differences resolved through negotiation and under in-win scenario
Nevertheless, the plan will not ensure a mutual benefit at it is largely intended to displace Oromo farmers from their land. In additions, the populations of the two areas are not homogenous. Hence, they have no common interest. Even though it is said the “IRDP’ will be voluntarily accepted by participating partners, the top cadres in Oromia themselves have strongly opposed the plan on the conference. Beside, the implicit objective of the plan is to remove/avoid the differences in language and culture there by to plant “Ethiopianism or Tigreans” on Oromo land. The plan is intended to say good bye to Oromo Culture and language. The other thing is that the differences between Oromo and others cannot be resolved as it is intended to eradicate Oromo identity, culture and language. As we know from history, Oromo’s never compromised on these issues. Hence, if the plan is to be implemented, peaceful co-existence may not be there.

D. Problems that may come because of the Integrated Regional Development Plan

As different sources shown, many Oromo’s living in Special Zone has already lost their land in the name of foreign direct investment and land grasping. This is because of several fa3ctories are constructed in the special zone by taking the Lands from local Oromo farmers. It is not new to see Oromo labor workers or guards in their own land. Family members are highly displaced by this measure. Many went to street. Not only the displaced Oromos damaged by this. It is said chemical coming out of the factories are also hurting the health of the remaining Oromos. It is said that “In Central Oromia, thousands of people and their livestock died due to the industrial pollution directly released to rivers and lakes.”

Taking the above as an experience, there also different reasons why the newly Master plan of Finfinne should not be implemented on Oromo people. Some of the reasons are:

1. It will bring Extreme Poverty: It is inevitable that the local Oromo farmers lost their land in the name of investment and urbanization. This means that the Oromos are systematically cleaned from their own land, as they were cleaned from Finfinnee in earlier days. Hence, the local farmers lose their land which is part of their permanent asset. After the lose their land, the farmers will going to work for 300 birrr in the factory or serve as house servant or home guard, which is already started. By doing so, the farmers face extreme poverty. In addition, the gap between rich and poor will very high. For example, one writer described the impact of “investment” saying:

“The current regime has sold out more than 3 million hectares of fertile land to the foreigner investors after forcefully displacing Oromo farmers from their ancestral land. The grabbing of land ended the indigenous people without shelter and foods. This displacement of the Oromo people accompanied by limitless human rights violations set the Oromo to be the vast number of immigrants in the Horn of Africa.”

2. Family displacement and disintegration: Members of a family will be displaced and disintegrated as a result of loosing their land. In addition, the workers of Finfinnee special zone will be displaced as they are working in Afan Oromo.

3. Abuse of constitutional rights: After long year of struggle and sacrifice of thousands of Life, Afan Oromo given constitution right to be used in administration, school and other sectors in Oromia region. This is one of the basic objectives that Oromos has been struggling. However, if the master plan is going to be implemented, working language of Finfinnee City, Amharic, is going to be used in the areas. By doing so, the local people will be forced to learn new language to use it for different purpose. The measure will take back Oromo to the “Atse” region. The Federal Constitution states “Every people, nation and nationality have the right to speak, to write and to develop their own language, as well as to express, to develop and to promote their culture and history.Article 39” will be clearly violated. The Oromo living in Finfinnee Special Zone will lose the rights that the FDRE constitution guarantees them.

4. Academic and psychological impacts on Oromo students: If the newly proposed master plan of Finfinnee City is going to be implemented, Oromo students living in the surrounding area will attend their education in Amharic, which is second language to the students. It is strongly argued that using the native languages of students as a medium of instruction is a decisive factor for effective learning However, this situation, failure to give a role to native languages and largely depending on second/foreign language instruction, brought various difficulties to students. The students are expected to entangle not only with learning the subject matters but also the language itself. It also creates difficulty to students in expressing themselves and as a result it limits their classroom participation as there is fear of making mistakes. In addition, it is a barrier to smooth classroom communication. It is also argued that use of a second/foreign language in education negatively affects the ability and the ease with which knowledge is acquired by students. It also affects the performance of students and creates difficulties in developing their cognitive skills. Moreover, giving low status to native languages of students in educational setting leads to marginalization of majority of the citizens from active engagement in the development arena. In general, the master plan will have negative impacts on Oromo students in various academic aspects.

5. Impact on Identity and Culture of Local Oromo People: The new plan will make Oromos to lose their identity and culture, like the previous regimes did. This is because people having different identity and culture are going to settle on Oromo land. The settlers will push out the Oromo identity and replace by their own. The Oromo’s will have very limited opportunity to exercise their cultural value and linguistic form. The language and cultural development will be also hampered by the new plan.

6. Economic impact: If the master plan is going to be realized, the Finfinnee City Adminstration will control all economic aspects of the areas. The income that is collected from different factories will be taken. The Oromiya government will loose great income to Finfinnee city administration.

7. Impact on Natural Resource and Environment: As the result of the plan, there will be overspread ground and surface water pollution. In addition, there will be severe deforestation and natural resource depletion.

8. Cutting Oromia into East and West Regions: The new Master Plan of Finfinne city will cut the current Oromia into two parts i.e. Eastern and Western. This is because the Central and great part of Oromia is proposed to be taken and incorporated into Finfinnee. Hence, the Central part that joins East and West will be taken.

D. What Should be done to Save the Oromo People around Finfinnee

As shown above, the master plan is so disadvantage for Oromia. In general, if we see the plan, it will affect local Oromo people in various aspects. However, the government who is supposed to represent the Oromo people is unable to see the danger. So we kindly ask the Oromos at home and Diaspora and other concerned bodies to forward ways and mechanisms to stop the intended plan. We ask the Oromo people and international communities, who will stand for the Oromo’s living around Finfinnee??

If we read an honest history of the present and past Governments of Ethiopia, we would conclude that the present Government is truly facing a difficult dilemma. At the dawn of the 21st century, we can neither run away from ourselves nor hide our realities. We have to face our generation and the historical realities of our time. It is undeniable that today, people demand respect for their human and national rights. Above all, people will not rest until their identity and their sovereignty over what is theirs is ensured. These are the peoples’ most burning issues. They realize that they have to make utmost effort of their own. It is within the context of the above-mentioned framework that the Oromo people resolutely demand their rights and freedom. It is to those who want to deny the rights and freedoms of the people that we are most bitterly opposed. It is a crime to deny the national identity and sovereignty of a people no matter how sophisticated the tactics used to do so. It is equally wrong to see the national desire of a people from a selfish perspective. It is based on the above concepts and precepts that the Oromo people continue their unceasing and bitter struggle against being treated as second class citizens. We know that our struggle is just for it is motivated by our desire to preserve our dignity and identity as a people.

We, the sons and daughters of the Oromo people, strenuously oppose the implementation of new Master Plan for Finfinne administration because we fully understand the historical development of the desire of other people to displace the Oromo people in order to benefit the non-Oromo new comers and their lackeys in this country. This highly orchestrated conspiracy, the present Oromo generation shall not tolerate at any cost. It will steadfastly and resolutely resist the conspiracy.

We also request international communities to put pressure on FDRE/TPLF Government and Finfinnee City Administration to stop the proposed Master Plan, which directly or indirectly harm the Oromo people.

We call on the Federal Government of Ethiopia, House of Peoples’ Representatives, the Federation Council, the Oromia Council to stop clearing Oromo people from their home Land in the name of inequitable Development and replacing others on their land.

Please generate comments as many as possible on what should be done about the plan.

May Waaq Gurraacha help us!

From: Sabbontoota Oromoo, Oromia.

We are always Oromo First!!!!

Sabbontoota Oromo can be reached at sabboontotaaoromo@yahoo.in

http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/stop-clearing-oromo-from-their-land-in-the-name-of-boosting-economic-development/?fb_action_ids=10152023934163952&fb_action_types=og.likes&fb_source=other_multiline&action_object_map=%5B454544934645241%5D&action_type_map=%5B%22og.likes%22%5D&action_ref_map=%5B%5D

 

Ethiopia: Raya under destruction

by Teumay Debesay | February 13, 2014
rayaRaya refers a tract of land stretching from Ala wuha in the south to Alaje in the north. That is bigger than Adwa and Axum awrajas combined. Historically, this is where the Weyane rebellion started in 1928 as a spontaneous reaction to a repressive system of the time. Originating in their present day Kobo wereda, the revolt would quickly spread to cover the entire Raya and Wejerat provinces. Later, the inhabitants of Enderta joined the revolt and a sort of quasi-organized alliance was formed after a decade of Raya and Wejerat rebellion. This alliance, Weyane, would emerge so potent that by its heyday it practically liberated the provinces of Raya, Wejerat and Enderta. The imperial government with the support of British Air force resorted to aerial bombardment of the rebel held areas which caused a wide-spread damage, including complete erasure of villages. However, the most detrimental factor that actually caused the demise of Weyane was to come from none other than Adwa people. In 1943, Dejazmach Gebrehiwot Meshesha along with a dozen of Adwans exploited the trust vested on them to assassinate the leaders of the Weyane movement. This is significant for in the Ethiopian tradition, at least until then, if one manages to kill the leader one will win the battle. Meshesha and co. breach of the traditional trust and value was so venomous that even to this date mistrust and resentment runs high in Raya. It is to be noted that if not for Meshesha of Adwa, the people were in a very strong bargaining position and if one has to look how similar revolts in Bale and other regions were resolved, the rebels demand for better governance was within reach. As a thank you for their contribution, Meshesha and his fellow Adwans were rewarded heavily by Haileselasse while a series of punitive attacks continued on the ‘originators’ of Weyane and ultimately Raya was divided between Wollo and Tigray.
When the TPLF started the armed insurrection in Ethiopia, it took little time to transform itself as an Adwa-only club by the same inherited act of treachery. The legacy of resentment that Meshesha and co. left means TPLF-Adwa had hard time to set foot in Raya. Hence, they needed to come up with a trick and did it so by cosmetically inserting the word Weyane in the Tigrigna version of its name. Taken with the harsher realities under DERG, Rayans reluctantly sided with TPLF on the principle of the lesser devil. Soon, tens of thousands of Raya youth joined the TPLF, including forming the majority and the backbone of Hadush “Hayelom” Ariaya’s fighting force that brought the little known“Hayelom” into prominence. However, if the experience of my village is anything, it is fair to conclude that almost all the Raya recruits ended up as cannon fodders. Those who survived, especially the independent and rational ones, would have never escaped the Meles-Sebhat death squad. In Raya, for example, it is not uncommon to talk to your relative TPLF fighter over the phone in the morning only to be notified of his death of “natural” consequences on the same day. I will say more on the motives next time. But for now, I want to draw your attention to the following Table, which is taken from the 1994 and 2007 population census of Ethiopia. I think this illustrates how the Raya and Adwa are faring under the TPLF-Adwa administration.
Table 1: Population of Raya and Adwa awraja towns in 1994 and 2007 census

Clearly, 7 towns (Robit, Gobiye, Waja, Mersa, Korem, Wedisemro, Chelena) of Raya from the total 11, i.e., 64% of the town that existed in the 1994 Census Ethiopia have died or are dying.  Well, with Adwa awraja towns the figures show a hard-to-believe growth registering as ridiculous as 1033% for Gerhusenay, Idegaarbi(377%), Nebelet(266%); even noticeable is the emergence of a novel city (Diobdibo) in the 2007 census, attesting to the developmental and modernization campaigns  in Adwa rural areas as well. The bar graph of the rate at which towns are expanding (Adwa) or shrinking (Raya) shown below can only be a proof that in the so-called Tigray “killil” both, depending on the area, de-constructive and constructive policies are in operation. To the unsuspecting, it may occur that this might have to do with the pre-1991 TPLF bandit caused civil war. However, it is not quite so for, for instance, there was no single bomb that was dropped on Adwa towns nor was a confrontation in populated areas in the entire Adwa awraja. There was insignificant causality as far as the civilian population of Adwa is concerned for the TPLF military engagement tactic in Adwa/Axum area was totally different from the rest awrajas. For example, Korem town alone might have received far more arial bombardment than the entire Adwa awraja. From SehulMikael (the Godfather of Ethiopia’s disintegration), to Meshesha-Sebhat-Meles-Sebhat(again), there exist very little dissimilarity.Raya-under-destruction2Right now, Alamata, the only remaining city not to die fast enough as Adwans would have liked to see, is under open destruction. The residents never complained on the absence of developmental activity but never expected that the Adwa administration of the city will come-up with a destruction agenda. Surprised by the revelation, the unsuspecting residents went to Mekelle to air their grievances in the hope that the big men there might be rational and take proper action. However, Abay Woldu’s administration did not give it a second to listen; just ordered more Bulldozers, armored tanks and a battalion to effectively carry out the planned destruction. Worse, those who complained the demolishing of their belonging are rounded-up and now languish in Adwa operated secret Tigrayan jails
Reference:

  1. Central Statistical Authority Ethiopia: The 1994 populaion and Housing Census of Ethiopia. Results for Tigray region, Volume 1, Statistical report.Table 2.2, Page 11
  2. Central Statistical Authority Ethiopia: The 1994 populaion and Housing Census of Ethiopia. Results for Amhara Region, Volume 1, Statistical report.Table 2.2, Page 13
  3. The 2007 Population and Housing Census of Ethiopia: Statistical Report for Tigray Region, Table 2.1, page 7
  4. The 2007 Population and Housing Census of Ethiopia: Statistical Report for Amhara Region, Table 2.2, page 11

http://ethiofreespeech.blogspot.co.uk/2014/02/ethiopia-raya-under-destruction.html?spref=fb

Silence and pain: Ethiopia’s human rights record in the Ogaden February 2, 2014

Posted by OromianEconomist in Aannolee and Calanqo, Africa, African Poor, Aid to Africa, Colonizing Structure, Corruption, Dictatorship, Ethnic Cleansing, Human Rights, ICC, Janjaweed Style Liyu Police of Ethiopia, Knowledge and the Colonizing Structure., Ogaden, Omo, Oromia, Oromiyaa, Oromo, Oromo Nation, Oromo the Largest Nation of Africa. Human Rights violations and Genocide against the Oromo people in Ethiopia, Oromummaa, The Colonizing Structure & The Development Problems of Oromia, Tyranny, Uncategorized.
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Repression in the Ogaden is mainly carried out by the notorious Liyu Police; this is a locally recruited force that has been widely condemned for the repressive methods that it uses.
This is how the force is described by Human Rights Watch:[6]
“Ethiopian authorities created the Liyu (“special” in Amharic) police in the Somali region in 2007 when an armed conflict between the insurgent Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) and the government escalated. By 2008 the Liyu police became a prominent counterinsurgency force recruited and led by the regional security chief at that time, Abdi Mohammed Omar (known as “Abdi Illey”), who is now the president of Somali Regional State.
The Liyu police have been implicated in numerous serious abuses against civilians throughout the Somali region in the context of counterinsurgency operations. The legal status of the force is unclear, but credible sources have informed Human Rights Watch that members have received training, uniforms, arms, and salaries from the Ethiopian government via the regional authorities.”
In January 2013 it was reported that the Liyu police numbered between 10,000 and 14,000. The force was accused of numerous human rights abuses and summary executions.[7] The Guardian newspaper reported that it had seen an internal British government document, from the Department for International Development, indicating that there were plans to spend £13m–15m of aid money on the force as part of a five year “peace-building” programme. The report was denied by the British government, which said all funding would go via United Nations agencies and not through the Ethiopian authorities.[8]
Despite these assurances concern about the behaviour of the Liyu police remains. The testimony below and the reports of atrocities carried out in recent weeks indicate these are well placed.
Testimony of Captain Hassan Mohammed Abdi aka Hassan Afo, a former member of the Liyu Police, who was active with the force in Degehbur Province. June 2012.
“In Balidhuure village (Eastern Degehbur Province) located in between Gurdumi and Koore, a Liyu police unit that left from Aware and commanded by Major Kidinbir rounded up and finally driven away most of the people that lived in the area. Among them was a disabled man who walks with a stick named Ina-Yul-yul or the son of Yul-yul. Not far from the village of Balidhuure, the handicapped man, Ina-Yul-yul could not continue walking. One of the Liyu policemen noticed this and he informed Major Kidinbir by radio. Major Kidinbir said, “He can’t walk? Then kill him where he is at right now.” That’s how Ina-Yulyul was shot and killed. He was killed because of one of his brothers was among the ONLF fighters.”
Reports of human rights atrocities committed in the Ogaden Region over the previous month.
25/12/13: In Guna’gado district of Degahbur province, at least 25 civilians were detained and 25,000 Ethiopian birr was stolen from them
5/1/14: In Gasaangas in Hamara district 5 civilians are unlawfully detained. They were: Hassan Geday, Hassan Nour Moalim Ibrahim, Rukiya Moalim Ibraahin, Anbiya Sheikh Mohammed and Nafis.
5/1/14: In Dhuhun a girl named, Halimo Duulane was detained .
10/1/14: In Eastern Iimay, Fadumo Wacdi Ahmed, Sa’ada Hassan and Gordo Abdi God were detained by the Ethiopian Security Forces.
10/1/14,In Guna’gado, Mohammed Isse Gu’had was tortured, detained and his 11 camels were stolen.
3/1/14: Hamuud-ka, in Fiq Province, the security forces detained Mohammed Ibrahim.
5/1/14: Ya’hob Village in Fiq Province, the security forced killed in a cold-blood Abdullahi Lo’bari in cold blood and injured Ahmed Hassan Awl.
5/1/14: Hamaro in Nogob Province, the security forces detained several people : Mohammed Abdi Rahman Omar, Abdirahman Bade, Ta’kal Yousouf and Ina-Barud.
Annex
Amnesty International on Ethiopia’s Ogaden region[9]
In September, the government and the ONLF briefly entered into peace talks with a view to ending the two-decade long conflict in the Somali region. However, the talks stalled in October. The army, and its proxy militia, the Liyu police, faced repeated allegations of human rights violations, including arbitrary detention, extrajudicial executions, and rape. Torture and other ill-treatment of detainees were widely reported. None of the allegations was investigated and access to the region remained severely restricted. In June, UN employee Abdirahman Sheikh Hassan was found guilty of terrorism offences over alleged links to the ONLF, and sentenced to seven years and eight months’ imprisonment. He was arrested in July 2011 after negotiating with the ONLF over the release of two abducted UN World Food Programme workers.

Human Rights Watch on Ethiopia’s Ogaden region
ETHIOPIA: UPR SUBMISSION SEPTEMBER 2013 [10]
http://martinplaut.wordpress.com/2014/01/31/silence-and-pain-ethiopias-human-rights-record-in-the-ogaden/

 

 

 

Related References:

https://oromianeconomist.wordpress.com/2014/01/28/us-congress-takes-a-historic-stance-against-land-grabs-related-forced-evictions-in-ethiopia/

https://oromianeconomist.wordpress.com/2014/01/19/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-pe/?relatedposts_exclude=1589

 

martinplaut

Silence and pain: human rights in the Ogaden

Martin Plaut

Introduction

The Ogaden is Ethiopia’s dark, dirty secret. It is far from prying international eyes, where almost anything can be done to anyone the government does not like.

The Ogaden was conquered and forcibly incorporated into Ethiopia by Emperor Menelik II in the last quarter of the 19th century. Its Somali speaking, almost exclusively Muslim community, never really accepted an Ethiopian identity. In 1977 it was the scene of an international conflict, as Somali President Siad Barre attempted to wrest the region from Ethiopia. The Soviet Union poured arms and Cuban troops into Ethiopia and the invasion was halted. The Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) has been fighting the Ethiopian government since 1995, and local people have been caught up in the conflict.

Oagen 1The Ethiopian authorities have sealed off the region to international journalists.

As Human Rights Watch wrote as…

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