Ethiopia-Sudan Tensions: Ethiopia arming the SPLM-N in the Blue Nile State

Sudanese military sources said that the Ethiopian government provided logistical support to Joseph Touka’s forces in Blue Nile, including weapons, ammunition and combat equipment. The sources indicated that the support arrived in the Yabous region on February 27, 2021 AD, and the support was received by Commander Joseph Touka and some of his forces’ commanders” (…) “The sources emphasized that the Ethiopian government aims to use Commander Joseph Touka to occupy the city of Kurmuk with the support of Ethiopian artillery, with the aim of dispersing the efforts of the Sudanese army on the eastern front” (Sudan Plus, 07.03.2021)

Who is Commander Touka? Well, his Commander Joseph Touka Ali, First Deputy Chairman of the SPLM and Deputy Commander-in-Chief of the Sudan People’s Liberation Army – North. So, his not a nobody and a high ranking commander in the SPLM-N. 

The SPLM-N killed Sudanese soldiers in early January 2021 in Malkan, Blue Nile State. So, these rebels are still active and it is suspicious that the Ethiopian government is supporting and supplying them with arms. That is a deliberate act to destabilize and strengthening one rebel outfit or militia. I am sure the Ethiopian government would be happy, if the Sudanese suddenly begun to give Samri or the TPLF abundantly arms as well. They would be crying out loud and call it interference in their “internal affairs”.

This is a devious act of Addis Ababa to weaken Khartoum leadership in one of their states. Not only have the skirmishes and battles in the Al-Fashaqa region. They want to intervene and use other proxies in the Blue Nile State.

Since December 2020 … the Ethiopian army have entered into Sudan. They have gone together with the Amhara Para-Military Group “Fano” and tried to take control of border posts there. They have later been beaten back and the Sudanese have taken control of the region again. Therefore, they would maybe prefer having battles on various of fronts. This to weaken the Sudanese Armed Forces (SAF). However, they were able to intercept the ploy, but this is worrying.

The worry is that the Ethiopian counterparts are willing to do this. As the Sudanese was doing the opposite when the conflict in Tigray started in November 2020. At that point, the Sudanese intercepted weapons going for the TPLF. They stopped it and confiscated it. While the Ethiopians are doing the opposite. That says it all of their objectives.

This isn’t a sign of brotherhood, but using optional proxy to weaken an enemy. As the Ethiopian army and Fano has already been attacking the Sudanese … so now they are trying to find other ways too.

The Ethiopian government supporting SPLM-N just says it all. They are not coming in peace, but seeking for more bloodshed. Their motivation is maybe revenge of the humiliation at the border in Al-Fashaqa region. They want to annex more land and the Prime Minister Abiy wants to be biggest warlord on the Horn of Africa, apparently. Peace.

Ethiopia: Abiy wants the young generation to sacrifice itself for his war(s)….

I ask you today that by keeping your ears, your hearts and your minds sane, you must take pride in sacrificing yourself in honour of your country and be a source of hope for the younger generation. The national army and the federal police are seeking young Ethiopians to join them. You must know there are forces from near and far that want to destroy Ethiopia and we need to build our strength urgently” – Prime Minister Ahmed Ali Abiy (06.03.2021).

The endless suffering, atrocities and horrific stories are coming out from Tigray region. Where the state and allies are continuing warfare against their outlawed enemy. This is a continued conflict, which seems to be his forever war. Where the National Army, Amhara Para-Military Group “Fano” and Eritrean Army is all going after the Samri and Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF).

The state wants its own narratives and stories out. While always dismissing any other reporting. However, here its straight out of the horses-mouth yesterday. Where the Prime Minister told youths who was done with first part of Service Training at the Friendship Park in Addis Ababa. That they should prepare the sacrifice themselves for the nation. They are the ones who are being sent to the slaughter for his mission and his end-game. That is the reality of this all.

He says all of that, while dismissing social media as a platform for activism. Because, a true patriot and a youth aspiring to stand up for nation is doing it with the guns either for the or the police force.

As he said this as well:

There are many young people who prefer to fight in the Facebook. You can’t safeguard our independence via Facebook. Unless you are ready to pay a price and sacrifice yourselves, you can’t protect Ethiopia’s Independence and ensure its continuity through mere writing and saying things in Facebook. You have to join the army and the police force and show our enemies that they cannot mess up with Ethiopia” (Abiy, 06.03.2021).

That he says it this way, as the warfare is prolonged and his goal-post is ever moving. At one point he will create new enemies and ensure more of his opponents are behind bars. That is just how things goes ahead of the polls. This Prime Minister will leave nothing to chance and use the whole state machinery to get his way. He will bury the ones in his way and if not detain them.

This is why speeches like this isn’t showing strength or resolve. It is showing that he wants the next generation to fight his battles and die for him. The Prime Minister wants more youths as soldiers and police officers to enforce his will all across the Republic. That is what he wants and he hopes they can fulfil his mission of total control and be crowned King.

Abiy wants to be the Emperor so badly. The Prime Minister wants to be the one who conquers and overcomes everyone. This is why he needs the next generation and the to be his sacrificial lambs. They are doing it for Ethiopia, but initially it is for his causes. These young Ethiopians will risk their lives so he can reign supreme. That is the end-game here.

It is tragic that it has come to this. A warlord asking the youth to conscript to the army or joint the police force. He clearly doesn’t plan for peace, but for more conflict. As he needs more battalions and more soldiers to fight his battles. Peace.

Ethiopia: Abiy’s “mother” is concerned about the recent “unrest”

There are some that say we are adding more debt to the country’s already high debt. But borrowing from the IMF and the World Bank is like borrowing from one’s mother” – Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali (December 2020).

The Law Enforcement Operation in the Tigray Region is clearly undermining the positive results of the past. The current Addis Ababa leadership is working against all the financial and economic progress the state has had. The Prosperity Party and Prime Minister Abiy is clearly not doing the World Bank any favours as well.

When the World Bank wrote this yesterday:

Ethiopia is currently facing challenging times and the World Bank Group is keenly following the latest developments in the country. The unrest in Ethiopia is unfortunate and of great concern. Such events undermine all the encouraging economic and social development outcomes the country has achieved in recent years” (World Bank, 05.03.2021).

They are calling the warfare in Tigray and atrocities elsewhere as unrest. As they are subtle about the waging war in Tigray. Also the assault on freedom, political affiliation and liberty in Oromia. The World Bank doesn’t want to say it directly, as they are not seeing stating the efforts to undermine people in the various reasons from the state. This being in Ogaden, Afar, Benshangul-Gumuz, Oromia and Tigray. All these are under fire for various of reasons and with the helping hand of the central government.

That is initially worrying the World Bank as it see the economic and financial sphere being decapitated and depleted, because of the “social unrest” and assault on its own citizens. This is what it really says, as the regions are in conflict with its own government.

Over the past decade, our interventions have helped Ethiopia to make significant progress in key human development indicators: primary school enrollments have quadrupled, child mortality has been cut in half, and the number of people with access to clean water has more than doubled. Notwithstanding these notable accomplishments, Ethiopia still faces many challenges and will need continued support to reach its development objectives to improve the living conditions of its expanding population, which is currently estimated to be in excess of 112 million” (World Bank, 05.03.2021).

Those challenges alone will not cease, when the government is continuing and worsening its internal conflicts like in Tigray. Where they are having direct warfare with its own population in combination of Eritrean soldiers, Amhara Para-Military Forces and the National Army all going after one enemy. While also assaulting the whole region in its efforts. Therefore, whatever achievements that has been done in the past. Might be destroyed to rubble and has to be rebuilt, as the shelling, burning villages and internally displaced people’s needs stability and a new home. Also, the loss of people in the massacres, killings and as a result of the war. There are so many tragedies and the costs will come to the surface when the Law Enforcement Operation ceases to exist.

The Ethiopian government have created new problems and will have prolonged aftermath after all these months in Tigray. They got to rebuild, build trust and ensure the safety of all citizens. That isn’t an overnight act, but a systemic effort. Where the state have to be able to secure the passages, the logistics and everything that is needed. An that is just to that one region alone.

The Prosperity Party isn’t bringing prosperity ironically, but its bringing tragedy instead. Also, in just a short time in office. Prime Minister Abiy have made his “mother” concerned and also being told that he has destroyed the previous achievements of his predecessors. That got to hurt his pride and his ego. Peace.

Ethiopia: Bayto Yiakl USA letter to U.N. Security Council Permanent Members – Re: The U.N. Security Council meeting-Humanitarian situation in Ethiopia’s Tigray region (03.03.2021)

Ethiopia: Ministry of Foreign Affairs – Press Statement on the Latest Situation in the Tigray Region (05.03.2021)

Ethiopia: Persistent, credible reports of grave violations in Tigray underscore urgent need for human rights access – Bachelet (04.03.2021)

GENEVA (4 March 2021) – UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Michelle Bachelet on Thursday stressed the urgent need for an objective, independent assessment of the facts on the ground in the Tigray region of Ethiopia, given the persistent reports of serious human rights violations and abuses she continues to receive.

“Deeply distressing reports of sexual and gender-based violence, extrajudicial killings, widespread destruction and looting of public and private property by all parties continue to be shared with us, as well as reports of continued fighting in central Tigray in particular,” Bachelet said. “Credible information also continues to emerge about serious violations of international human rights law and humanitarian law by all parties to the conflict in Tigray in November last year.”

“Without prompt, impartial and transparent investigations and holding those responsible accountable, I fear violations will continue to be committed with impunity, and the situation will remain volatile for a long time to come.”

The UN Human Rights Office has been receiving information about ongoing fighting across the region, particularly in the centre of Tigray region, as well as incidents of looting by various armed actors. Reliable sources have shared information about the killing of eight protestors by security forces between 9 and 10 February in Adigrat, Mekelle, Shire and Wukro. More than 136 cases of rape have also been reported in hospitals in Mekelle, Ayder, Adigrat and Wukro in the east of Tigray region between December and January, with indications that there are many more such unreported cases. The Government has said investigations are under way into the cases of sexual violence.

The Office has also managed to corroborate information about some of the incidents that occurred in November last year, indicating indiscriminate shelling in Mekelle, Humera and Adigrat towns in Tigray region, and reports of grave human rights violations and abuses including mass killings in Axum, and in Dengelat in central Tigray by Eritrean armed forces.

A preliminary analysis of the information received indicates that serious violations of international law, possibly amounting to war crimes and crimes against humanity, may have been committed by multiple actors in the conflict, including: the Ethiopian National Defence Forces, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, Eritrean armed forces, and Amhara Regional Forces and affiliated militia.

“With multiple actors in the conflict, blanket denials and finger-pointing, there is a clear need for an objective, independent assessment of these reports – victims and survivors of these violations must not be denied their rights to the truth and to justice. We urge the Government of Ethiopia to grant my Office and other independent monitors access to the Tigray region, with a view to establishing the facts and contributing to accountability, regardless of the affiliation of perpetrators,” Bachelet said.

Bachelet also expressed concern at detentions this week in Tigray of journalists and translators working for local and international media. While the journalists have now been released, there have been worrying remarks by a Government official that those responsible for “misleading international media” would be held responsible.

“Victims and witnesses of human rights violations and abuses must not be hindered from sharing their testimony for fear of reprisals,” the High Commissioner said.

Bachelet welcomed recent statements by the Government on accountability and measures taken on access for humanitarian actors. She urged the authorities to ensure that those commitments are translated into reality, and stressed that the UN Human Rights Office stands ready to support efforts at advancing human rights, including efforts by the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission aimed at ensuring accountability.

Ethiopia: These bloodstains will never be forgotten Mr. Abiy [and Mr. Afwerki too]

Since the launch of the Law Enforcement Operation in early November 2020. There been articles, reports and since been recorded massacres, murders and killings of civilians in the Tigray Region. The Federal Government, the National Army, Amhara Para-Miltary Group “Fano” and Eritrean Army have all participated in the destruction, the atrocities and the battles over the region.

Yes, Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) shall be accountable for their parts and their activity as well, but the blunt force of accountability and responsibility is on the Head of State and the Federal Government who has more power, friends and allies to destroy the “outlawed” and deemed “terrorist” group the TPLF. Therefore, Prime Minister Ahmed Ali Abiy and President Isias Afwerki have much more weight on their shoulders compared to TPLF President Debretsion Gebremichael.

So, in this regard… the Internally Displaced People, the refugees leaving refugee camps and the tactics of starvations, mass-murder and shelling towns. Are all deliberate acts of the state and its allies to conquer and leave no one behind. They are looting, destroying and silencing anyone. These folks are using all means to get total control and impose an “interim regional government” on the region as well.

The Prosperity Party is sending own soldiers as “peacekeepers” as the Ministry of Peace is enlisting them. The state is using mechanical forces, brigades of Eritrean soldiers to fight their fight and a militia to kill anyone who oppose the new sets of rules. It is now the “Rule of Law Operation” instead of the “Law Enforcement Operation”. Both make it seems like a cause to catch thieves in a den and not conventional warfare, which is happening on the 4th Month with little to no access for humanitarian aid and organizations to help the ones in need. The ones who get can get raided later by the soldiers who is supposed to keep them safe, but instead steal their vital aid.

That is why all the deaths, by the guns, the shelling of mortars or missiles are all on Abiy and Afwerki. These bloodstains, the deceased and the ones is no longer with us. These souls are on their account. It was their responsibility and their orders that was the reason for them losing their lives. A quick and brief operation, which was promised to not take lives. Have not taken thousands upon thousand. We have no idea how many by soldiers, by starvation and by trying to seek refugee in Sudan. We just know that too many have died over the principal of control from Addis Ababa.

This war is one to prove supremacy.. That is it really.

Abiy can claim otherwise and also backtrack the planned efforts in Amhara and airlifting troops to Eritrea ahead of attack on the Northern Command in early November. That is part of the timeline, the state never will really tell, but the drips of information proves it.

They have tried to block information and reports. If anything comes out. The state is debunking and dismiss it. While they asking the world to not accept “disinformation” but they are not accepting anything else published either. So, they only want their vision and not accepting the witnesses who has revealed stories and reports, which the state doesn’t want out.

This is why all massacres, mass-killings and atrocities needs to be revealed. The state will downplay it… but we need to know more. We only have a very limited picture and that is deliberate by the state. They also not accepting the information dropped from other sources than their own. Still, these are saying something and has to be taken into account. Since, they dare to shed lights on the dark side of war. While the state will only say it will “investigate” but the reports will only be pointed at their enemy. Never take accountability or responsibility for their own action. The Prime Minister have already lied and would easily lie again. Therefore, Abiy and Afwerki cannot run away from this, even if we know that they want too.

The leaders doesn’t want to be questioned and that has been clear for so long. Abiy and Afwerki doesn’t want this out, but when it does. It should create an outcry. The amount of horrific actions, which is hidden and been kept in the dark. That is acts that the ones in power orders.

The bloodstains on their hands cannot be washed away. The bloodshed and deaths are all in the hands of the government and their allies. That shouldn’t be forgotten about and needs to be stated.

The hands are red and no sort of cleaner will get it off. They can only tell what happened and who ordered what, but don’t expect that ever to happen. Abiy and Afwerki just want the glory, but don’t want to take the responsibility. The citizens of the Republic can die in the hands of the soldiers, but the King only wants to be praised. Long live the King and his Republic will prevail. Peace.

Ethiopia: Office of the Prime Minister – Statement on the Tigray Region Rule of Law Operation (03.03.2021)

Ethiopia: OLLAA Applauds German Government for Recalling Myanmar Ambassador, Urges Similar Response to Ethiopian Atrocities (02.03.2021)

Falls Church, Virginia (3/2/2021)—The Oromo Legacy Leadership and Advocacy Association (OLLAA) applauds the German government’s March 1 announcement that it has recalled its ambassador to Myanmar following the military government’s unlawful killing of peaceful protestors. “Such deadly violence against peaceful demonstrators can not be justified,” said German Foreign Ministry spokesman Steffan Seibert, “We summoned Myanmar’s ambassador today to make this position clear.”

OLLAA commends Germany’s commitment to democratic norms and urges the government to similarly signal its support for Ethiopian civilians, who are suffering gross violations of their human rights to life and freedom from unlawful arrest.

The atrocities in the Tigray region are part of an overarching pattern of human rights abuses committed by the Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government.

According to a report by Australian human rights monitoring NGO the Oromia Support Group (OSG), at least 1,342 civilians have been killed by Ethiopian security forces since October 2018. For example, nearly 350 civilians died in extrajudicial killings in the Western Oromia region alone. A 2020 report by Amnesty International documents dozens of horrific extrajudicial killings, including a father of three who was murdered by Ethiopian Defense Forces (EDF) at a town-wide meeting because his mobile phone rang in the middle of proceedings. In another case, the Oromia Police Special Force targeted and killed a 10th-grade student while he drank coffee at a local cafe.

Aside from the Ethiopian government’s abhorrent and illegal executions of civilians, the state has carried out a campaign of mass arrest and arbitrary detention for the past two years.

Between January and September 2019, Amnesty International reported that at least 10,000 people were known to be imprisoned in a wave of mass detention that targeted anyone believed to be even remotely associated with opposition political parties.

More recently in 2020, amidst the covid pandemic, the Ethiopian government arrested and imprisoned at least 5,000 people, many of whom were journalists, politicians, and student activists critical of the government according to Amnesty international. While the government postponed democratic elections, ostensibly due to covid transmission concerns, state security forces simultaneously placed thousands at high risk of the virus due to “punitive” conditions inside detention centers.

On the same day as Germany’s announcement, a BBC journalist was arrested and reportedly taken to a military detention camp.

OLLAA urges the German government to undertake the following actions:

  1. Unequivocally condemn Ethiopia’s use of extrajudicial killing, mass arrest, and political imprisonment, and directly call on Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to release all political prisoners with no conditions.
  2. Dispatch representatives from the German embassy in Addis Ababa to monitor the wellbeing of Jawar Mohammed, Bekele Gerba, and the dozens of other political prisoners who have not eaten for over 30 days. The detainees are leading a hunger strike in order to demand justice for all political prisoners and their families, who continue to be targeted by Ethiopian security forces for their association with the detainees.
  3. Recall the German Ambassador to Ethiopia Stephan Auer in response to the Ethiopian government’s flagrant violations of democratic norms and international law.

For more information about the Oromo hunger strike, visit OLLAA.org/hungerstrike.

Ethiopia: A Joint Press Release by Salsay Weyane Tigray (SaWeT), National Congress of Great Tigray (Baytone) and Tigray Independence Party (TIP= regarding the press release by the US State department (03.03.2021)