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The desperation of Oromo refugees in Cairo August 3, 2016

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Odaa OromooOromo refugees in Egypt, we need protection

The desperation of Oromo refugees in Cairo

An Oromo asylum seeker died in Cairo last week after attempting to help two men who set themselves on fire during a protest in front of a United Nations office.

The protest outside the UNHCR’s office in 6th of October City called for the UN refugee agency to end its alleged discriminatory treatment of Oromo refugees.

Most Oromo refugees in Egypt come from Ethiopia, where they make up the largest ethnic group. The Ethiopian government responded to Oromo protests with violence late last year, intensifying an ongoing crackdown against them. Human Rights Watch estimated in June that over 400 Oromo have been killed since November 2015, with thousands injured, tens of thousands arrested and hundreds forcibly disappeared.

Mohamed Ademo, a Washington DC-based Oromo journalist, who has been following the case closely, told Mada Masr that Asli Nure was injured while trying to help two men who were later hospitalized, whose identities remain unknown.

Video footage of the incident was shared on social media, showing large amounts of smoke and people screaming.

The UNHCR released a statement saying it, “deeply regrets the tragic passing of an Ethiopian Oromo asylum-seeker on 26 July 2016, following a violent incident outside UNHCR office in Cairo.” The statement made no reference to the protest.

The UNHCR office will be closed until next week. The UN agency’s spokesperson Tarik Argaz told Mada Masr the closure is a temporary measure to guarantee the safety of staff members and asylum seekers coming to the offices.

Argaz says UNHCR security staff helped extinguish the fire and transported the injured to hospital. The office is working closely with hospital staff and the authorities in relation to the incident, he adds.

But Ademo claims the response from the UNHCR was lacking.

“It is even more tragic that the UNHCR’s response to all of this is to close its office. The appropriate course of action should have been to thoroughly investigate protesters’ grievances and what led to this deadly episode,” he says.

When asked about how the UNHCR is addressing Oromo concerns they are being discriminated against, with their applications for refugee status commonly either ignored or denied, Argaz says the agency is in touch with Oromo community figures concerning their grievances, but would not disclose any details.

Argaz and the UNHCR as a whole categorically deny Oromo refugees face any discriminatory treatment. “We process every claim according to UNHCR standard procedures. I want to stress that it’s an individual process and not a group-based approach,” says Argaz.

But Oromo community leaders have been saying for months that they face unfair treatment. Abdul Kadir, the secretary general of Oromo Refugees Egypt, a community organizing center for Oromo refugees, first spoke to Mada Masr in April about Oromo protests at the UNHCR office in Cairo, which continued for a couple of weeks. At the time Kadir and his organization had just begun negotiations with the UNHCR and they have since taken a step back from active protests. But he says palpable anger against the UNHCR remains.

“Many Oromo are rejected. Every week it’s 40 to 50 people who are rejected. More than 99 percent have been rejected, so people are angry, they are not happy with the UNHCR,” he claims.

Kadir says many Oromo refugees in Cairo have been accused by the Ethiopian government of belonging to the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF). The OLF is an armed group that was designated a terrorist organization by Ethiopia’s parliament in 2011. According to HRW, while the group has minimal military capacity, its existence is often used by the Ethiopian government to justify the repression of Oromo.

Many Oromo refugees in Cairo are either connected to the OLF or accused of connections, Kadir says, meaning they are unable to return to Ethiopia amid the ongoing crackdown.

He attributes the large number of rejected applications from Oromo for refugee status to the similar stories they tell, which he says makes UNHCR officials suspicious. However, he adds that many Oromo refugees wait years for a response after their initial status determination interviews with the UNHCR, in comparison to the average 20 months the UNHCR promises.

Feven Basada has been waiting for almost three years for the result of her refugee status interview. She says the stress of not knowing has caused her to become sick and unable to work, and that she is only able to survive because of the support of her church.

Basada left Ethiopia because her family was being targeted by the government. “I don’t know if anyone is alive or not,” she says. “You don’t have anyone. You don’t have a country, you don’t have anything. That’s why I have this sickness,” she adds. Basada lives alone, and often, when she calls the UNHCR office, no one answers. “I want to live like a human being, it is very hard … very difficult for women especially.”

Marwa Hashem, assistant public information officer for the UNHCR in Cairo, told Mada Masr that each refugee application has to be evaluated on an individual basis and the agency works with over 181,000 asylum seekers and refugees, which may explain the long wait. Hashem adds that staff shortages and increasing numbers of asylum seekers have made agency efforts to reduce the wait time difficult.

“Cases of asylum seekers with specific vulnerabilities may be adjudicated faster than others under certain circumstances, based on identified needs in each case,” Hashem explained, adding that the UNHCR does not discriminate against groups of people based on affiliation or ethnicity.

But others who work in the field disagree. A source from an international refugee organization told Mada Masr anonymously that he often sees Syrian refugees take priority over other groups.

“It’s been my experience that pretty much all refugee organizations right now have a dual focus — one for Syrian refugees and one for non-Syrian refugees. People will look at meeting a quota for non-Syrians, and they will dedicate half of their resources to Syrians,” he explains.

He says that the reason for this is a combination of the large influx of Syrian refugees into Egypt and funding priorities. In a world of tight funding, he explains, organizations have to make choices in order to cover their costs.

Whether or not this is the case, Oromo refugees are beginning to feel hopeless, according to Ademo.

“The depth of their frustration and grievance with lengthy procedures that keep ending in rejection is heartbreaking. The desperation has already led dozens to perish in the Mediterranean while attempting to reach Europe,” he says. A boat crossing the Mediterranean Sea from Egypt to Europe capsized in April and at least 400 refugees, largely from Somalia, Eritrea and Ethiopia, drowned.

Ademo says many Oromo still in Cairo feel hopeless and “some have publicly suggested they have nothing left to lose, and may set themselves alight.”


Appeal for urgent action to UNHCR :Oromo Refugees in Egypt need immediate protection April 11, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in Oromo, Oromo Refugees in Egypt.
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Odaa Oromoo Oromo refugees in Egypt, we need protection


Appeal for urgent action


Oromo Refugees in Egypt need your immediate protection
To: The United Nations Higher Commission for Refugees (UNHCR),

Australian Oromo Community Association expresses its deep concern about the rejection of Oromo refugee appeal for protection and resettlement case. We appeal to request your immediate action on a very urgent demand, particularly, that involving Oromo refugees living in Cairo, Egypt.
Oromo refugees fled their homeland to various neighboring countries to rescue their lives and their families. Majority experienced years of detention, torture and suffering behind bars while others escaped due to fear for their lives as the results of occurrences of unbearable human right violations in Ethiopia. Commonly, Oromo refugees have fled from the extra-judicial killings, removal from their properties and land confiscation, illegal arrests, trials without evidence, torture, and constant humiliations.
Therefore, rejection of their refugee case appeal for resettlement and protection means not only making them hopelessness and darken their futurity but also devastating for them as they are left without a guarantee from not to be deported back to Ethiopia that certainly exposing them to detention, torture, and possible death.
The Australian Oromo Community Association intensely concern for the physical and emotional well-being of these refugees and their families. We utterly believe these genuine Oromo refugees are forced to flee persecution and desperately search for safety and protection from violence and intimidation. They are in an extreme situation that needs your prompt action.
Regarding this urgent matter, the Australian Oromo Community Association appeals for your supportive action, and sincerely request to consider their case and continue processing their protection status and resettlement process in third countries. Please show your kind sympathy instantly to save these very vulnerable innocent Oromo refugees’ life in Cairo, Egypt.
Thank you for consideration of our concern and this urgent matter.


VIDEO: Oromo refugees protest for registration outside UNHCR Egypt


Oromia: OSGA highlights human rights issues with the United Nations October 30, 2015

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Oromia Support Group Australia (OSGA) has voiced its concerns about the plight of Oromo refugees with the United Nation’s key refugee agency, the UNHCR.

This is the second time that OSGA has had the opportunity to submit a report for the UNHCR’s consideration; its first submission was made last year.

The organisation, which is one of Diaspora Action Australia’s diaspora partners, raises awareness of human rights issues affecting the Oromo and other oppressed people in Ethiopia. It advocates against abuses and violations and supports displaced people and refugees from Ethiopia. One of OSGA’s ongoing projects is to collect and publicise human rights abuses by recording people’s stories.

OSGA was one of several Australian-based organisation to make written and verbal submissions to the Refugee Council of Australia (RCOA), which presented the information at the UNHCR- NGO (Non Government Organisation) Consultations in Geneva in June.

RCOA delegates raised the issues in meetings with senior UNHCR representatives, including the Africa, Middle East and North Africa bureaux, and senior officers for the Horn of Africa, Yemen and Kenya.

Marama Kufi from OSGA said their report focused on the experiences of Oromo people who are seeking refuge in Horn of Africa countries.

He said security measures in refugee camps and personal safety were a major concern as there have been reports of physical attacks, harassment and kidnapping. There were also reports of asylum seekers being forcibly returned to Oromia.

Marama explained that OSGA gathered information and first-hand accounts from its network of contacts who are located in surrounding countries. OSGA compiled 87 detailed accounts of abuse and harassment, which were used to inform the report, he said.


Oromo refugee stranded on a boat in the Mediterranean October 30, 2015

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A refugee from Ethiopia stranded on a boat in the Mediterranean

(ICMC News, Geneva, 23 October 2015 – Abu Kurke Kabeto is a young man from the Oromo region of Ethiopia. He currently lives in the Netherlands with his wife and his two years-old child. When you look at him, the first thing that immediately strikes you is his friendly smile and his positive attitude. You would never imagine what he has gone through in his life.


Escaping from discrimination and repression against Oromo people in his country, Abu Kurke left Ethiopia in 2008 and went to Sudan. Through the Sahara desert he then reached Libya in 2009. From there, he made various attempts to cross the Mediterranean in search of a better life in Europe. In 2010, he embarked on a rubber boat and made it to Lampedusa, Italy. However, the boat was pushed back to Libya by the Italian authorities. He ended up spending 8 months in prison in Libya.

In March 2011, he found himself again on a dinghy boat that attempted the sea crossing from Libya to Lampedusa with 72 migrants on board. After 19 hours at sea, the boat started running low on fuel, and people were beginning to feel anxious. They called Father Mussie Zerai, an Eritrean priest based in Europe, asking for help. After receiving the distress call, Father Zerai immediately alerted the Italian coast guard and NATO command in Naples. The Italian coast guard sent out an alert to all vessels in the area, asking for intervention.

The captain of the migrants’ boat suddenly received a call from the Italian authorities, who were asking for the GPS coordinates. Shortly after the call, the phone battery of the captain ran out. To make things worse, the boat completely ran out of petrol.

Abu recalls: “On the second day, the sea was getting very rough. That night two helicopters approached our boat. We saw them flying above us. We clearly recognized the word ‘Army’ written in English on one of them. Three white soldiers were on board. We thought we would be saved. But instead of rescuing us, the soldiers dropped water and some biscuits towards us. There were 72 people on the boat and, within three minutes, there was no water and no biscuits left.

We were communicating with them with our hands, as the noise of the helicopters was very loud. We showed them the two babies we had on board, and urged them to take them. But they said they couldn’t and they would come back later. We insisted, please please please, take the babies! They went away, and we never saw them again.

Three days later, two jet fighters came close to the boat. They went around us two times, the military officials took even pictures of us. In the meantime, the babies had died. We showed them their bodies, but they didn’t do anything. They went away.”

With no petrol left, no phone battery, the migrants were stranded in the middle of the Mediterranean for two weeks. Abu explains that people were going crazy. Some migrants jumped in the ocean, in despair. He started eating toothpaste in order to have the feeling to have something in his mouth. “Toothpaste is good food during these tough times” the captain said to Abu. Abu was badly suffering from an eye infection due to a sunburn. “When I ate the toothpaste, my eyes suddenly opened again”.

“It was horrible to see so many people dying in front of me, and not being able to do anything. But the worst thing was to hear the babies crying for so long and not being able to give them food, and eventually see them dying. Even today, I can’t forget the babies crying for food”.

Two weeks later the boat reached the coast. “We thought we were arriving in Italy and would finally be in Europe, but then we saw the Libyan sea flag and we realized that the boat had been drifted back to where it had started. We were back to Libya.” Abu and the other 9 survivors were very weak and needed medical care. “But instead of providing us access to medical facilities, they put us in prison”.

“Finally, it was the Catholic Church in Libya which provided us with medical care, as soon as we had been released from prison”. From Libya, he attempted the crossing again in July 2011 on a fishing boat, together with his wife. They finally made it to Lampedusa. From there, they reached the Netherlands, but were eventually arrested because of their double asylum requests in the European Union. Following the Dublin Regulation procedure, the Dutch authorities sent them back to Italy. Finally, thanks to the personal help of a Dutch Parliamentarian, Abu and his wife were finally able to get refugee status in the Netherlands.

Abu’s wife gave birth to their son in the Netherlands. Currently, the family receives a modest contribution from the government for accommodation, food, and education. Abu takes classes to learn Dutch and goes to college with the aim of getting a diploma in logistics. His wife took up training to become a nurse.

“Today, as I see many more people going through the same experience – like little Aylan Kurdi who was found dead on a beach in Turkey – my heart is broken. I feel very sad about what is still happening. The international community can do something to stop this situation. There is a solution: world leaders must remove dictators and ensure that people have rights in their countries, so that they are not forced to leave.”



Watch the video of Abu Kurke Kabeto as he tells his story during the Global Forum on Migration and Development, held in Turkey from 12 to 16 October 2015.

Kenya: Oromo Refugees and Asylum Seekers are at Risk October 27, 2015

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HRLHA’s Urgent Action and Appeal

October 25, 2015

For Immediate Release

Contact Details

Appeal To: The President of the Republic of Kenya 
Your Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta
President of the Republic of Kenya
Box 74434-00200
Nairobi, Kenya
Tel: 254 203 247000
Your Excellency,

First of all, the Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) would like to express its appreciation to the people of Kenya and to its government for their hospitality and kindness towards thousands of Oromo and other refugees and asylum seekers who have fled their homes to escape government persecutions in Ethiopia, and who are now residing in different parts of the Republic of Kenya including in the capital city, Nairobi. Since the early 1990’s, when the TPLF government came to power to the present, hundreds of thousands of Oromo and other nationals have run away from arbitrary detentions, degrading tortures and violent killings in Ethiopia to save their lives by seeking refuge in the Republic of Kenya and other neighboring countries.

However, the Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) expresses its deep concern regarding the safety of all Oromo national refugees and asylum seekers presently residing in the Republic of Kenya because of the document it recently received from its informants. The document was written by the Ethiopian Government agency, the so called “Anti-Terrorist Unit”, and sent to the Republic of Kenya Government. It addresses the bi-lateral agreement signed by both countries in 2012.

In this communique, the Ethiopian Government’s “Anti-Terrorist Unit” reminds the Republic of Kenya Government of the bi-lateral agreement made between the two countries in 2012, an agreement that expresses issues of common interest such as terrorism on which both countries should find a common


solution. document

The communique discloses the names of 131 Oromo Nationals and their addresses and telephone numbers in Nairobi and in different township areas; the agency claimed the source of its information was the Ethiopian intelligence unit.  In the names listed among the 131 Oromo Nationals in this communique is Mr. Dabassa Guyyo, an Oromo cultural legend who recently disappeared in Nairobi. His name was at the top of the list. (#1).

List of Oromo National Refugees and Asylum seekers in Kenya labeled as terrorists by the so- called “ANTI TERRORIST UNIT”, the Ethiopian Government agent.

No Name Sex No Name Sex
1 Dabasa Guyo M 67 Fawaz Ahmed M
2 Dirirsa Kejela (Wakjira) M 68 Lami Sori M
3 Dachas Roba M 69 Abdo Asabot M
4 Shamil Aliyi M 70 Lenco Eliyas M
5 Keranso Abdisa M 71 Asha Bire F
6 Mahamed Abaye M 72 Faxe Aniya F
7 Gaddisa Lammi M 73 Diribe Gada F
8 Alemayehu Iddosa M 74 Aman Gobena M
9 Tolera Mogasa M 75 Shafis Akil M
10 Shaga Arado M 76 Tajudin Ibrahim M
11 Abdusalam Muktar M 77 Temesgen Kumsa M
12 Galgalo Jilo M 78 Maya Dagale M
13 Fikadu Dirriba M 79 Abdata Saba M
14 Gosaye Anota M 80 Shifera Kumala M
15 Jamal Ibro M 81 Lami Dugasa M
16 Chali Nagasa M 82 Mahadi Harar M
17 Kalil Mohamed M 83 Shamsadi Abdurazak M
18 Mohamed Taha M 84 Godana Nure M
19 Mohamed Zakaria M 85 Hawi Falmata F
20 Mohamed Abdullah M 86 Fardosa Mohamed M
21 Idris Negawo M 87 Fatiya Ame F
22 Shukuri Mohamed M 88 Roba Gada M
23 Buke Chulo M 89 Yomsan Abaye M
24 Abdi Guddina M 90 Mohamed Kedir M
25 Ana Saba M 91 Ayub Hussien M
26 Bahar Harari M 92 Tahir Kadir M
27 Lemo Wariyo M 93 Adele Ahmed M
28 Wayu Malka M 94 Tura Ahmed M
29 Tamam Ahmed M 95 Alemayehu Wallaga M
30 Magarsa Bikila M 96 Chala Ragassa M
31 Galgalo Dhiri M 97 Fira’ol Ambo M
32 Kadir Jale M 98 Hailu Jifara M
33 Falma Roro M 99 Lucho Bayitu M
34 Obsa Lenco M 100 Shifera Biranu M
35 Mustafa Boki M 101 Nuradin Musa M
36 Gugsa Tulu M 102 Mahadi Jundi M
37 Dida Kena’a M 103 Waljira Mangasha M
38 Gaga Jimma M 104 Tiya Nure M
39 Gada Mulatu M 105 Anane Tamiry M
40 Bontu Ambo F 106 Dure Nagasa M
41 Barnan Saba M 107 Dika Godana M
42 Abdi Denge M 108 Dalacha Iddi M
43 Nur Kadir M 109 Galane Dasta F
44 Sa’id Hussein M 110 Alemayehu Kitaw M
45 Berhanu Mulisa (Tola) M 111 Mikael Wallaga M
46 Abdi Hirphasa M 112 Kasu Wallaga M
47 Tolasa Gada M 113 Solomon Wallaga M
48 Aman Samuna M 114 Mohamed Hussein M
49  Bilisumma Hordofa M 115 Birhanu Ambo M
50 Fita Mideksa M 116 Abdurashad Marfo M
51 Abdullah Ahmed M 117 Badhne Kafani M
52 Darara Irbo M 118 Solomon Kebede M
53 Jalata Wallaga M 119 Mekonen Beyene M
54 Milkessa Wakjira M 120 Zalalem Teshome M
55 Sanyi Wallaga M 121 Habib Hussein M
56 Yeron Biru M 122 Abdo Hebo M
57 Daku Gababa M 123 Tahir Hassen M
58 Timaj Taha M 124 Abba Arsiti M
59 Misira Mama M 125 Mohamed  Tahir M
60 Badriya Boro F 126 Abba Hussein M
61 Badriya Nur F 127 Haji Abas M
62 Maksina Amano M 128 Abdullah Hamza M
63 Abdi Ibrahim M 129 Aba Qube M
64 Aliyi Sabit M 130 Haji Hassen kalid M
65 Chala Bultum M 131 Omar Alqadir M
66 Jafar Yusuf M


The disappearance of Mr. Dabassa Guyyo Safarro is disheartening and HRLHA is deeply shocked.

Mr. Dabassa Guyyo Safarro, age 80, a resident of Mololongo, Kenya for more than thirty- five years disappeared on September 27, 2015 in Nairobi.  The HRLHA is highly suspicious that the disappearance of Mr. Dabassa Guyyo  Safarro is connected with the campaign of Ethiopian authorities labelling Oromo refugees in Nairobi as terrorists.  HRLHA also suspect that Mr. Dabassa Guyyo Safarro is being held in Nairobi, or might have been deported to Ethiopia. In either case the Kenyan Authorities have an international legal obligation to not hand over Ethiopian refugee and asylum seekers residing in their territory to the Ethiopian Government and need to disclose the whereabouts of Mr. Dabassa Goya Safarro to his family and the public- and give the reason for his arrest.

In case Mr. Dabassa Guyyo Safarro has been handed over to Ethiopia, it should be noted that the Ethiopian Government has a well-documented record of gross and flagrant violations of human rights, including the torturing of its own citizens who were involuntarily returned to the country. The government of Ethiopia routinely imprisons such persons and sentences them to life in prison, and often imposes the death penalty. There have been credible reports of physical and psychological abuses committed against individuals in Ethiopian official prisons and other unofficial or secret detention centers. Under Article 33 (1) of the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees (189 U.N.T.S. 150), to which Kenya is a party, “[n] o contracting state shall expel or forcibly return a refugee in any manner whatsoever to the frontiers of territories where his life or freedom would be threatened on account of his. . . Political opinion.” This obligation, which is also a principle of customary international law, applies to both asylum seekers and refugees, as affirmed by UNHCR’s Executive Committee and the United Nations General Assembly. By deporting refugees, the Republic of Kenya Government will be breaching its obligations under international treaties as well as customary law.

  1. Under the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (1465 U.N.T.S. 185) to which Kenya agreed in 1997, Kenya has an obligation not to return a person to a place where they face torture or ill-treatment. Article 3 of the Convention against Torture provides: No state party shall expel, return (“refouler”) or extradite a person to another state where there are substantial grounds to believe that they would be in danger of being subjected to torture.
  2. For the purpose of determining whether there are such grounds, the competent authorities shall take into account all relevant considerations including, where applicable, the existence in the state concerned of a consistent pattern of gross, flagrant or mass violations of human rights. We strongly urge the government of Kenya to respect the international treaties and obligations it has signed and ratified.

Therefore, HRLHA would like to draw the attention of Western Governments, the UN Human Rights Council, the EU Human Rights Commission, the African People’s and Human Rights Commission as well as other regional and international human rights organizations and NGOs to these worrisome safety situations of Oromo refugees in the Republic of Kenya and take all necessary actions against:

Background Information:

The Kenyan Government is well known for handing over refugees to the Ethiopian Government by violating the above mentioned international obligations. It is very disheartening to recall that Engineer Tesfahun Chemeda, who was tortured to death on August 24, 2013 in Ethiopia’s grand jail of Kaliti, was handed over to Ethiopian Government Security Agents in 2007 by the Kenyan Government. Tesfahun Chemeda was arrested by the Kenyan anti-terrorist forces, along with his close friend Mesfin Abebe, in 2007 in Nairobi, Kenya, where both had lived as refugees since 2005. Both were later deported to Ethiopia. The Ethiopian Government detained them in an underground jail in a military camp for over one year, during which time they were subjected to severe torture and other types of inhuman treatment until when they were taken to court and changed with terrorism offenses in December 2008. They were eventually sentenced to life imprisonment in March 2010. (Mesfin’s death sentence was later commuted.)

The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) is highly concerned for the safety and security of  Mr Dabasa Guyyo Safarro who disappeared in Nairobi on September 27, 2015, whose name along with the above listed refugees was also labeled by the Ethiopian Government as terrorists and  those who are still living in Kenya. It urges the government of Kenya to respect the international treaties and obligations, to not cooperate with the Ethiopian unfounded allegations and disclose the whereabouts of Mr. Dabassa Guyyo Safarro. The Kenyan Government should also reject the unfounded allegations of Ethiopian Government against Oromo national refugees and asylum seekers residing in Kenya.

HRLHA requests the governments of the Western countries as well as international organizations to interfere in this matter so that the whereabouts of Mr. Dabassa Guyyo are disclosed and safety and security of the refugees of those currently staying in Kenya are ensured.


  1. Please send appeals to the President, the Kenyan Parliament and Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Kenya and its concerned officials as swiftly as possible, in English, or your own language expressing
  2. Urging the authorities of Kenya to ensure that Mr. Dabassa Guyyo Safarro is treated in accordance with regional and international standards on the treatment of prisoners
  3. Urging the authorities in Kenya to completely reject the unfounded allegation of the Ethiopian Dictatorial Government about Oromo refugees living in Kenya.

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Macha-Tulama-USA: Urgent Letter to #UNHCR About Conditions of Refugees in Libya, Yemen & South Africa May 5, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Macha & Tulama Association.
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???????????Machaa Tuulamaa in USA


May 3, 2015

Mr. António Guterres, UN High Commissioner for Refugees
Case Postale 2500 CH-1211 Genève 2 Dépôt Switzerland

Your Excellency Mr. Guterres,

The Board of Directors of the Macha-Tulama Association, USA, is writing this urgent letter to bring to your attention about the suffering of thousands of Oromo refugees and other nationals in Yemen, South Africa, Libya as well as in the Middle East and Africa. Among these refugees were individuals who were killed or beheaded by terrorists and other criminal elements. Furthermore, the most vulnerable elements of these refugees such as the sick, women, children and elderly are dying every day. At this moment no calling is more urgent and noble and no responsibility greater for the leadership of UNHCR than trying its very best for saving the lives of thousands of Oromo refugees and others who are trapped among warring factions in Yemen and attacked by terrorists in Libya and burned by criminals in South Africa.

The Macha-Tulama Association (MTA) is a non-profit organization legally registered in the United States of America for advancing the objective for which the main MTA was established in Oromia (Ethiopia) in 1963. For your information, the Oromo constitute the single largest national group in Ethiopia. And yet, they are political minority in that country. Consequently, successive Ethiopian governments, including the present one, have banned MTA, the only civic institution of the Oromo people in the Ethiopian Empire. The MTA envisioned mobilizing Oromo citizens for fighting illiteracy, diseases, constructing schools, building roads and clinics, promoting Oromo self-consciousness, and reviving Oromo language, culture and history. It also struggled to restore the human dignity and inalienable rights of the Oromo people that have been suppressed by successive Ethiopian regimes.

Continuing the policies of the previous regimes of Ethiopia, the current minority Ethiopian government has intensified political repression as well as land-grabbing and transferring other economic resources of the Oromo and other peoples to the current government officials, their supporters and foreign corporations. It is the Ethiopian government’s policy of illegal land grabbing and political persecution of the Oromo and others that have forced the young, old, women and children to flee from their fatherland and get exposed to dangerous conditions in foreign lands. Oromo refugees and other nationals who have been forced to leave their homeland by the political and economic repression of the current minority Ethiopian government are exposed to gross human rights violations and terrorism. These refugees have been forced to flee from their homeland in order to seek protection from persecution, arbitrary imprisonment, torture and extra-judicial killings because of their ethno-national and religious identities, political opinions and their economic resources. According to Amnesty International report, entitled ‘Because I am Oromo: Sweeping Repression in the Oromia Region of Ethiopia, between 2011 and 2014 at least 5000 Oromo were arrested, tortured, and faced extra-judicial executions because of being Oromo, and for also peacefully demonstrating against the regime’s land grabbing policies and the so-called Addis Ababa Master Plan that has been intended to evict millions of Oromo farmers from their prime land around Addis Ababa (Finfinnee), the capital city of the Ethiopian Empire.

Unfortunately, global powers and international financial institutions indirectly finance the gross violations of human rights of the Oromo and other people claiming that the current minority Ethiopian government is “democratic” and promotes “development.” For the Oromo and other people who have been terrorized and evicted from their ancestral lands, the claims of democracy and development are just propaganda ploys. In fact, the policies of this dictatorial regime are exposing the Oromo and others to unimaginable misery. When the people have resisted illegal removal from their ancestral lands, the current Ethiopian government’s police force and soldiers have beaten and detained them without trial, and many have been killed. It was for the purpose of saving their lives that thousands of Oromo and others have fled from Ethiopia to foreign lands. However, those who fled to South Africa, Yemen and Libya have faced torture, looting, and burning; they have been also beheaded, raped, tortured and killed by criminal elements and extremists. (Please see the following sites and videos for further information). http://www.ayyaantuu.net/ethiopia-muslim-martyr-among-those-killed-by-isis/; http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/apr/20/south-africa-xenophobic-violencemigrant-workers-apartheid; http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Security-Watch/terrorism-security/2015/0420/Islamic-Statemurders-30-African-migrants-in-Libya-while-up-to-700-died-off-coast-video

Particularly, there are thousands Oromo refugees in Yemen alone in areas including Sana, Eden and other refugee camps. The current political crises and turmoil in Yemen has put the lives of these refugees in a very dangerous condition. These refugees are trapped among warring factions without any help from international and regional organizations such as yours. Many of these refugees have been raped, imprisoned, wounded or killed. They are also exposed to terrorists, fundamentalists, slavers and human traffickers. We are gravely concerned about the deteriorating conditions of Oromo and other refugees in Yemen, South Africa and Libya. These refugees are concentrated in camps and other places without adequate food, shelter and medical services. Therefore, we appeal to the UNHCR and your leadership to take the following urgent actions:

• First, we request that the UNHCR demand that the governments in Yemen, Libya and South Africa provide protection for Oromo and other refugees who have sought protection and safety in their countries.

• Second, we request that the UNHCR provide material support urgently for those Oromo refugees and others who are trapped among warring factions, especially in Yemen.

• Third, we appeal to the UNHCR to arrange suitable conditions with other countries for these refugees to have an opportunity for permanent settlement in third countries.

• Fourth, we request that the UNHCR seeks permanent solutions through the United Nations for eliminating political and economic conditions that have produced tens of thousands of Oromo and other refugees from Ethiopia.

• Fifth, we request that the UNHCR persuade big powers and international financial institutions not to finance the Ethiopian government’s policy of land grabbing, which has evicted tens of thousands of Oromo nationals and others from their ancestral lands.

We believe that as the UN High Commissioner for Refugees and the principal voice on refugee issues, you have an extraordinary opportunity to alleviate the incredible human sufferings of the Oromo and other refugees in Yemen, Libya and South Africa and in other countries. We urgently request you to take a concrete measure that will save the lives of Oromo and other refugees who are trapped among warring factions in Yemen. Additionally we request you to urge the government officials of Libya and South Africa to protect Oromo and other nationals in their countries. Finally, we thank you for your interest in the wellbeing of the Oromo and other refugees from Ethiopia and for taking concrete actions to protect them.


Abera Tefera,

For the Board of Directors of the Macha-Tulama Association, USA



His Excellency Ban Ki-moon,

U.N. Secretary-General

The United Nations, New York.

NY 10017 Fax: 212-963-7055

E-mail: Inquiries@UN.Org



His Excellency John Kerry

US Secretary of State

Washington, D.C.20520

E-mail: Secretary@state.gov


European Union

Fax: +32-2-285-73 97 / 81

E-mail: public.info@consilium.eu.int


U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants

2231 Crystal Drive, Suite 350 Arlington,

VA 22202-3711

Fax: (703) 769-4241

E-mail: uscri@uscridc.org

Amnesty International International Secretariat

1 Easton Street




Fax: +44-207-956-1157

E-mail: contactus@amnesty.org

Human Rights Watch

Rory Mungoven Global Advocacy Director

350 Fifth Avenue,

34th floor New York,

NY 10118-3299

USA Fax: 212-736-130



Letter to UN from Oromo Community in Seattle on Plight of Oromo Refugees in Yemen: Open letter to UNHCR from the Oromo Community Services of Seattle (OCSS). #Oromia. #Africa. #UN. April 21, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Because I am Oromo, Oromo the Largest Nation of Africa. Human Rights violations and Genocide against the Oromo people in Ethiopia.
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Letter to UN from Oromo Community in Seattle on Plight of Refugees in Yemen

Open letter to UNHCR from the Oromo Community Services of Seattle (OCSS)


Antonio Guterres, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
Case Postale 2500
CH-1211 Genève 2 Dépôt

Dear Commissioner Guterres,

We, the Oromo Community in Seattle*, are writing this letter to express our deep concern and dismay regarding the inhuman suffering of Oromo refugees in Yemen. Thousands of Oromo refugees have fled their homeland to neighboring countries, including Yemen, seeking protection from persecutions, large-scale arbitrary detentions, disappearances, tortures and extra-judicial killings they would be subjected to from the Ethiopian government due to their ethnic identity and political opinions. According to the Amnesty Internationalreport ‘Because I am Oromo’ – Sweeping Repression in the Oromia Region of Ethiopia, that was released on October 2014, between 2011 and 2014, at least 5000 Oromo have been arrested, tortured, and faced extra-judicial executions due to their peaceful opposition to the government. This report is self-evident that Oromo were forced to escape to rescue their lives from possible harassment of the Ethiopian government.

Currently, it is estimated that over ten thousands Oromo refuges reside in refugee camps in Yemen, including Sana and Eden. The current political turmoil in Yemen put the refugees’ lives in dire situation. Reports reaching us from Yemen indicate that refugees are trapped with no help in situation beyond their control. We have also received a report that a number of Oromo refugees have been killed, and some of them wounded by the flying bullets and indiscriminate ongoing fighting due to lack of adequate protection. Lives that they clenched to save are again put them in grave danger.

We are gravely concerned about the deteriorating condition of Oromo refugees in Yemen unless your leadership and international community intervene as soon as possible, and necessary steps are taken immediately to save the lives of the refugees. Oromo refugees in Yemen are also suffering from lack of food, shelter and medical care. Furthermore, the Ethiopian government security agents follow Oromo refugees and abduct some individuals using the current political crisis as an opportunity. This situation also jeopardizes the safety of the refugees.

We believe that, at this critical juncture, your leadership and the active engagement of the international community could mean the difference between life and death for many Oromo refugees. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights, signed in 1948 and 1951, have articles that recognize the rights for refugees. Any country that has signed these declarations is obliged to respect them. When every letter of these declarations violated, member countries of the UN and humanitarian organizations should not keep silent.

Your Excellency,

We strongly believe that as a UN refugee agency, you are sanctioned to making a lasting impact on the lives of refugees and other displaced communities around the world by focusing on the basic needs and rights for refugees – like shelter, water, food, safety and protection from harm. Silence about the dire situation of Oromo refugees in Yemen is not only inhuman, but it is also a flagrant violation of the letter and spirit of the 1951 UN Convention, the 1967 Protocol Relating to Status of Refugees, and the UN General Assembly Resolution 2198 (XXI).

It is a duty of the United Nations High Commissioners for Human Rights, UNHCR and the international community to take a swift action to rescue the refugees whose lives and freedom have fallen in a grave danger. We earnestly demand the UNHCR and member nations to extend their humanitarian assistance so as to find a way in which the refugees could be rescued from that imminent humanitarian disaster that may result in carnage. We believe Oromo refugees, as any other people in the world, are entitled to get protection and humanitarian from the UNHCR and governments that signed 1951 Geneva Convention.

We, therefore, appeal to the UNHCR, all UN member nations and other humanitarian organizations to put all necessary pressure on the governments and groups to refrain from violating the rights of refugees in Yemen and territories under their control. As the current situation in Yemen exposes Oromo refugees to further threats, we demand respectfully the UNHCR Office to find urgently durable solutions in which the lives of the refugees can be saved. We also request urgent medical care, food and shelter for Oromo refugees in Yemen.

Sincerely Yours,

Oromo Community Services of Seattle


H. E. Ban Ki-moon
The United Nations
New York. NY 10017
E-mail: Inquiries@UN.Org
Fax: 212-963-7055

U.S. Secretary of State
John Kerry
Washington, DC 20520
E-mail: Secretary@state.gov

European Union
E-mail: public.info@consilium.eu.int
Fax: Fax (32-2) 285 73 97 / 81

U.S. Committee for Refugees
1717 Massachusetts Ave. NW
Suite 200
Washington, DC 20036
Tel: 202-347-3507
Fax: 202-347-3418
E-mail: uscr@irsa-uscr.org

Amnesty International
International Secretariat
1 Easton Street
Fax: +44-20-79561157

Human Rights Watch
Rory Mungoven
Global Advocacy Director
350 Fifth Avenue, 34th Floor
New York, NY 10118-3299 USA
Tel: 1-(212) 290-4700
Fax: 1-(212) 736-1300

* Oromo Community Services of Seattle
Address: 7058 32nd Avenue S. Suite # 101 – Seattle, WA 98118
Tel: (206) 251-1789

Things got worse and worse for Oromo refugees in Yemen’s roiling violence April 19, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Africa.
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OOromo refugees in Yemen

(Oromo Refugees in Aden) – Yemen seeking for international attention to the excessive discrimination made against us, in particular all the last two decades. The right delayed is the right denied.

Subject: problem of the Oromo Refugees in Yemen remains unsolved, while Other refugees enjoy with fair protection and the rights (to live or move with free, education, health, resettlement out of Yemen just for better changes of life etc) which the Oromo refugees are denied even, after more than 17 years of deprivation and discrimination. And now under fire of the war

Who is behind and why is this all about? Is it sensible to think or say that such huge discrimination and inhuman treatment against the Oromo refugees, in particular is made out of the sight of or, does the international community including the relevant law intends to discriminate against the Oromo refugees? And what will the outcome or effects of the closed eyes (of the governments, human rights etc) to the abuses facing the Oromo refugees in Yemen be on future of the human rights?

Despite the prevailing situation is serious in general and probable to deteriorate our situation from bad to worse or to expose us more to the dangers anticipated/ intended, but it is not seemed however to be much different from the war of the excessive discriminations inflicted on us, in particular since more than 17 years as refugees in Yemen. As Oromo refugees we were under constant threats, intimidation, systematical discrimination and deprivation of the rights as refugees and, or the right to seek /claim against or for fair protection and treatment as equal as the other refugees in Yemen.

Specific details

Threats: harassment and extortion the Oromo refugees with UNHCR mandates (in the streets, at their work places and even, in their home etc) by the police just for they are” Oromo refugees” that compelled the Oromo to hide under the pretense of Somalis on need (during movement out of the living area etc). Intimidation: frightening the Oromo refugees by threatening situation or forcibly deportation for claiming for the right to protection, equal treatment to other refugees, Or for claiming against the abuses. Systematical discrimination: whenever we seek for the right to (protection, education, etc), the response for this by UNHCR (national staffs) in Aden is to say that we are not allowed to have or to seek for these rights in Yemen because the authority doesn’t recognize or that it does consider the Oromo refugees as illegal.

We are honest that we should respect the irregular policy of the Yemeni government towards us because it has been clear to be unwilling to grant the Oromo refugees as others. But we are seriously pointing to UNHCR which fails a pinnacle of its obligation towards us by procrastination with our refugee protection.

Oromo refugees particularly, in Aden are trapped in the moist of systematical pressures and deprivation by UNHCR , which was and still having political outlook towards us and practicing very scathing criticism( as to blame us as though we behave to contravene against the law etc) and misinformation against us excessively as a pretext to disprove or deny as well as to blur the international attention towards the well-founded and flagrant threats facing the Oromo refugees, in particular in Yemen. Whatever we seek or claim for (e.g. Refugee protection, assistance, the rights etc as refugees) is distorted as being for resettlement (: as if our entire claim intends for resettlement) even though it is for specific assistance. On the contrary, UNHCR is giving resettlement in third countries just for better change, for non-Oromo refugees those are granted all the rights as equal as the host community. Sometimes UNHCR claims that they are treating the Oromo refugees as same as the others by offering them assistance needed including resettlement. And at the same time they contradict what they’ve already mentioned by saying that ‘our refugee status has been deaden for belonging to the (OLF), which has lost its political legitimacy in the world. But they are still unable to respond to the question says “ how could the Oromo Refugees in Aden – Yemen seeking for international attention to the excessive discrimination made against us, in particular all the last two decades. The right delayed is the right denied. failure of the” OLF” policy in the world effect on only the refugees in Yemen apart from those in other countries of asylum”?

We are under influence of the national staffs who struggle hard to hide and confuse the actual facts related to our prolonged sufferings. UNHCR expatriate doesn’t perceive severity / situation facing us, because we are denied the right to access to persons of concern, and any written letter is interceded by the staffs intend to fail our reasonable claim before reaching the person of concern. So, they use to deter and eliminate us even, our committee leaders by their guards or the police. The staffs just then give the expats distorted information and persuade them wrongly about our intention.

What kind of the humanity is this, of which the deserving people are deprived while offered for those who should be considered as secondary concern?

In spite of such flagrant abuses, unkind treatment and discrimination treated against Oromo refugees, but the international community uses to turn a blind eye towards us by relying on the distorted information given by its customers (UNHCR) concern problems of the Oromo refugees.

All this discrimination is made to us because we are defenseless and without advocate, although the situation necessitates because the general attention to the refugee protection has become less and complicated unless international advocacy is made on behalf of these refugees according to the relevant laws. But the silence of the international community, Human Rights watch etc towards these inhuman treatments against the Oromo in particular has discouraged humanity and courage much more the abusive policy of the Ethiopian government against Oromo in Yemen.

UNHCR has played very crucial role in getting the Oromo refugees deprived of not only the rights as refugee in Yemen, but also of humanitarian intervention endeavored by some government interests and supports humanity such as( the government of Canada, which made great attempts two consecutive years [ 2004, 2005 ] willingly intending to give the Oromo refugees citizenship. But UNHCR in Aden denied the two times missions preventing them even, from visiting location of the Oromo refugees. However, we never forget the praiseworthy attempts intended by government of Canada.

The prolonged deprivation or discrimination treated against us has now been affecting our children those were born under the flag of UNHCR in Yemen. If the law itself discriminates against the parents, isn’t there any of the laws which support the right of the children?

This is not for the first time but we wrote a lot of petition to you since 2004 but never brought any positive change. Instead, we have been made to face worse and badly overreacted pressures resulted from the petitions applied, because no intervention or attention has been made towards us, excepting the amnesty’s very humanitarian Endeavour which should never be forgotten. But UNHCR blocked the process before reaching destination.

Comment on the Oromo communities in (the global continents) On behalf of the Oromo refugees living under appalling condition in Yemen, we would like to mention fraternal regards to all the Oromo communities in the world and we hope for you great success in your efforts aiming for the Oromo problems inside and outside of Oromia in general and for the Oromo Refugees in Aden – Yemen seeking for international attention to the excessive discrimination made against us, in particular all the last two decades. The right delayed is the right denied. Refugees those have threatened by the abusive policies emanating from the despotic government of Ethiopia in countries of asylum.

As we believe Oromo has lots of intellectuals in many countries in the word but we are disappointed and surprising about their silence on the sufferings of their people (refugees). What is the main role they have played in bringing a possible solution for their threatened refugees particularly, those in the Arab countries although a massive petition to you has been applied? We hope this time should not be as before.

You are aware of what is going on in Yemen that has compelled the international community to take its peoples from Yemen. Refugees (Somalis) have been leaving and others even, the Eritrean refugees have been promised by the Ethiopian authority to be taken from Yemen. But what about the Oromo refugees who have nowhere to return although Oromo is the most vulnerable, the most threatened refugee in Yemen? UNHCR in Aden also has left us heedlessly and without even, a piece of advice concern the dangers surrounding despite we are the most liable refugees to any possible threats on the ground more than any others.

Effects expected from this deterioration towards us: Oromo refugees in Yemen are beset by Ethiopian abusive policy through the Saudi which is striking on Yemen.

As we know the last aggressive deportation process made against thousands of Ethiopian from Saudi Arabia was carried out by the request from the Ethiopian authority through its friendly relationship with kingdom of Saudi. And now it is controlling completely all over Yemen and it is intending to deploy its forces that can be very harmful to us in Yemen. It is believable that Saudi will carry out forcibly deportation against us on the request of Ethiopia. In addition there is rumor information that some political faction in Yemen uses to recruit and exploit peoples (refugees) in struggling. And this can make us target to any possible revenge.

As remembered last year on 7 March 2014 Ethiopian authority came to our settled area called Basateen with Yemeni authority to make plane how to deport Ethiopian refugees In Aden/ Yemen. The other side is the Ethiopian government is planning and made agreement with Djibouti government to deport Oromo refugees in Yemen by sea if by the plane is impossible, as we hearing information and we seen in this month they taken 30 Ethiopian embassy community from Aden to Ethiopia by the sea.

Therefore, we are writing this urgent appeal letter to international community( US government, human rights organizations and others) seeking your urgent attention and assistance to get us rid of this threatening situation as soon as possible.

Finally, we would like to insist you( the Oromo communities and representatives wherever they are) to give a good support to this petition and enable it reach to all peoples of concern and governments possible to give us lasting solution as humanitarian.

Thank you

You can contact to: Abdulmalik Mohamed Ahmed. Mobile No, +967-771361374
Ahmed Kamal Abdalla, Mobile No. +967-771605410/+967-734420407


Over 250,000 East African refugees trapped in Yemen

Many refugees and asylum-seekers from Somalia, Ethiopia and Eritrea say they have nowhere else to go


Aljazeera America,  April 18, 2015

Tens of thousands of East African refugees and asylum-seekers are at risk of being left behind in Yemen’s roiling violence, deprived not only of safe options for evacuation but also of a home country that might take them in, activists and U.N. officials said this week.

Since pitched fighting between Yemen’s Houthi rebels and forces loyal to the ousted president erupted in March, escape from the country has been arduous even for foreign citizens and wealthy Yemenis. Airports are under fire and commercial transportation cut off, forcing the most desperate to charter simple power boats and make harrowing journeys across the Red Sea.

But for the over 250,000 registered Somali, Ethiopian and Eritrean refugees and asylum-seekers, the situation is even more trying. The U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and its partners have a contingency plan to receive 100,000 refugees in Somalia’s relatively stable regions of Somaliland and Puntland, and another 30,000 in Djibouti, but that process will unfold over the next six months. And it is barely underway.

“The reality is that there are limited options for people to get out,” said Charlotte Ridung, the Officer-in-Charge for the UNHCR in Yemen. “Some have fled by boat, but many ports are closed, and fuel is an issue so the options for escape are indeed limited.”

As gunbattles and aerial bombardment engulf the port city of Aden, at least 2,000 people have fled urban areas to take shelter in the nearby Kharraz refugee camp, Ridung said. Thousands more refugees and Yemenis alike have begun to make the dangerous voyage across the water, including 915 people who fronted $50 each for boats from the Yemeni port of Mukha to Somalia — among them Somalis returning home for the first time in decades.

There, the UNHCR registered “women and children who arrived extremely thirsty and asking for water,” Ridung said. They included a pregnant woman who was immediately transferred to a hospital to deliver her baby.

Meanwhile, asylum-seekers and migrants traveling in the opposite direction from East Africa continue to arrive in war-wracked Yemen. Last Sunday, the UNHCR registered another 251 people, mostly Ethiopians and Somalis, who arrived by boat at the port city of Mayfa’a. Whether they were unaware of the violence in Yemen or hopeful mass evacuations from the country might take them somewhere safer is unclear.

“Many people think when they reach Yemen they’ll get passage to Europe right away, but it is wrong information,” said Sana Mohamed Nour, 21, an Eritrean refugee and community leader in the Yemeni capital city of Sanaa. “We are trying our best to get out.”

For those like Nour, whose parents brought her to Yemen from politically oppressive Eritrea when she was just an infant, Yemen’s violence has made the daily hardships of refuge that much worse. Many refugees, who are only able to find informal work as maids, construction workers or day laborers, have lost their jobs in recent weeks as businesses shut down and people hole up in their homes. The closure of ports means food and other supplies are dwindling in the country, which imports roughly 90 percent of its food. “At night, we can’t sleep,” she said. “And when we go out during the day, we’ll be asked for ID or passport [by security forces], and there’s a lot of people [being] taken to prison.”

The options for escaping Yemen are somewhat more acceptable to Somalis, the largest refugee contingent in Yemen at over 236,000, according to UNHCR estimates. While violence has plagued Somalia since the early 1990s — including the Al-Qaeda-linked Al-Shabab insurgency that still terrorizes pockets of the country — many Somali refugees have taken the war in Yemen as their cue to finally return, if not to their home towns then to the Somaliand and Puntland regions.

The situation is different for political refugees, who include most of the over 14,000 Eritrean and Ethiopian refugees or asylum-seekers left in Yemen. They say returning home would mean political persecution, imprisonment or violence. “The Somali refugees can go back to their home country, because there was no problem, and it will take them,” said Abdulmalik Mohamed Ahmed, a 42-year-old ethnic Oromo refugee from Ethiopia, who lives in Aden with his five children. “But we have no place or country to welcome us. We are just waiting.”

Ahmed said many of the estimated thousands of Oromos in Yemen are fearful that the Ethiopian government, which denies it persecutes Oromos and considers them economic migrants, will try to use evacuation efforts to whisk his people back home and perhaps into prison. In recent days Ethiopian embassy officials have deployed in Oromo neighborhoods in Aden, hoping to round up volunteers for government-run charter flights back to Ethiopia, he said.

But the idea of relocating anywhere in the Horn of Africa, as the U.N. is planning, is unfeasible, Ahmed said. Somalia, which borders Ethiopia to the east, is within reach of the government in Addis Ababa that imprisoned Ahmed once and still holds his father. “If we go back it is clear, we will face our fate there,” he said.

The U.N. has told refugee community leaders that it is “working on” getting them out, Nour said, but there has been little sign of progress. Members of the Eritrean diaspora have been called upon to help negotiate transportation for refugees, but she fears “no one else is talking about refugees in Yemen.”

“We are waiting, and every day the situation gets worse.”



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