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Statement by the Oromo Democratic Front (ODF) on talks with the Ethiopian Government (13.05.2018)

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ONLF: The Lynching of 24 years old Ms Taysir Omar Food- the Beginning of the END of TPLF regime and its killing squads in the Somali Territory (12.05.2018)

On the Morning of May 10, 2018 the killing squads created by TPLF in the Somali Territory code named Liyu-police in order to terrorise them as special police abducted Ms Taysir Omar Food, a twenty four year old unmarried girl and Lynched her at the Qabridaharre police station in Ogaden. After two ours they called the relatives of the extra-judicially killed girl and asked them to sign a disclosure claiming that she killed herself. The relatives who immediately took the picture of the girl with marks of the wire used for lynching and nail scratch during her struggle, refused to sign the paper and run crying to the town centre.

After hearing what happened the town’s folk took to the streets and started an impromptu demonstration. The Ethiopian army and security forces tried to frighten the demonstrators firing life bullets. Later the head of security and army in Qabridaharre called the elders and asked them to calm the people but the elders refused. Hundreds of people were detained and the town was put under Curfew.

The Ethiopian Army and Liyu-police has been committing massive violations of human rights in the Somali territory under Ethiopia for the last twenty five years and has made the Somali territory(Ogaden) hell on Earth. Although the Somali people resisted and paid a heavy price for struggle for their right to self-determination, the new upheavals that started in other parts of Ethiopia has brought a measure of hope that at least the new Prime Minister will take action against the TPLF right hand henchman in Ogaden, who was the main instrument of TPLF pogrom in Ogaden, Abdi Ilay. However, after the status quo in Ogaden was kept as before, despite changes in the Ethiopia, the Somali people started agitating peacefully for their rights. Activists in Europe and America intensified their propagation of the crimes committed in Ogaden and demonstrations started in Siti (Shinile)Region, then spread to Fafan(Jigjiga) and parts of Degahbur, Godey and in the Whole of the Ogaden where the people started expressing the need for change and lifting of the undeclared marshall law in Ogaden that was imposed since 1994, when ONLF was banned and the territory put under undeclared military administration, using the Somali regional administration as proxy.

The Killing of Taysir by lynching is reminiscent of the lynching of Ms Ridwan by the Ethiopian army in 2007, is a new catalyst for the insurrection of Somali people to get rid of TPLF special rule that is based on war economy, using the Ogaden as cash cow to rebuilt Tigray region.

ONLF Categorically condemns the Ethiopian regime that allows the criminals in Ogaden to terrorise a whole nation and commit such heinous crimes as befell Taysir to continue and calls the Somali people to unite and stand together in order to liberate the Somali people from this criminal regime and achieve genuine self-determination.

ONLF calls upon the international community to pressure the Ethiopian government to stop the crimes it is coming against the Somali people using such people as Abdi Ilay and allow the Somali people to exercise their right to self-determination.

ONLF supports and stands by the Somali people in their struggle against occupation and tyranny.

Unity, Perseverance, Self-reliance and Victory to the People

Ethiopia: Dr. Abiy gave the world a false hope, as the TPLF SoE is still oppressing the people!

Since the end of March 2018, the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defence Force (EPRDF) selected their new Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ali. That happens after the end of February, when the Command Post and the Minister of Defense Siraj Fegessa announced another State of Emergency, that was approved by the Parliament early March and means the continued oppression of the protesters in the regions of Amhara and Oromia would continue. As it has, it hasn’t stopped with the selection of Dr. Abiy as the PM. The Command Post and Agazi Squad has continued their raids, the terror and tyranny in the Somali Region, Ogaden, Amhara and Oromia.

James Moody reports: “The Somali region protests erupted on 20 April. The first protests called for the regional government to release 1,500 prisoners, as it had promised to do in February (Africa News, 28 February 2018). In the following days the protests gained momentum, spreading to other towns in the Siti zone, and the scope of the complaints widened – the protests were increasingly against corruption and abuse by the regional president, Abdi Illey. Illey is generally unpopular in Somali province because of his violent deployment of the Somali regional militia, the Liyu Police (ACLED, 12 April 2018) and because of corruption accusations. However, not only is Illey facing challenges from the population, he is also balancing leadership turbulence within his own party. On 24 April, Illey fired the deputy regional president, Abdikarim Igali, fearing that Igali would capitalise on the regional protests to mount a challenge to Illey’s position in the Somali government (Addis Standard, 27 April 2018). This strategy backfired, instead provoking increased protest, particularly from Igali’s home district of Shinile. Illey’s other response to the protests has been to reinforce security by ordering Liyu Police forces back to the regional capital Jijiga. There have been relatively few confrontations between the Liyu police and protesters, but responses to calm the protesters should be cautious to avoid further conflagration” (James Moody – ‘ETHIOPIA: PROTESTS SHIFT FROM OROMIA TO SOMALI PROVINCE’ 05.05.2018, link: https://www.acleddata.com/2018/05/05/ethiopia-protests-shift-from-oromia-to-somali-province/).

So the government hasn’t changed, the new PM makes a shining light with speeches and public gatherings. However, the actions of the EPRDF is still fueled with aggression against the population. That hasn’t changed, not with the new PM. It is more of the same. Just nicer speeches and impression of hope. While the dire needs are still there and the authorities are still acting oblivious world-wide, while locally cracking down on anyone questioning the EPRDF, the TPLF infused government.

For the second time within the three months, there is again violent skirmishes from the authorities in Moyale, which happen last time in February 2018. The reason this time is unknown, there are reports of casualties, but none verified as the gun-shots has appeared, as well as fires in the town. Also that people are fleeing from the town to Kenya. Just like they did in February. Therefore, the government has no direct solution.

We know also that things aren’t getting better with the problems in various regions as the reports on the 3rd May 2018, when the Federal Attorney General ordered that all arrests done by the Command Post in regions, would be taken care of in the states and not federal. Meaning, the local leaderships and their courts will be in-charge of the ones detained while it occurred during the State of Emergency. Also, securing that the TPLF central government isn’t the ones who are keeping people arrested, but the local leadership.

There been little sign of hope, less if you look at the beautiful words, but those words doesn’t bring justice to oppressed, to the ones shackled and detained, the ones afraid of speaking, the ones afraid of gathering and the ones who might lose their lives. Just for standing up against a government, which doesn’t represent them or their kind. They are just representing businesses and foreign interests. Not the public, not the regions and not the unemployed youths or poor peasants, who deserves a government that actually represent them. Peace.

UNSOM condems suicide bombing in Gaalkayo as attempt to derail reconciliation process (28.04.2018)

The United Nations Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) condemns today’s suicide bombing in the city of Gaalkacyo, which reportedly killed government security officers and civilians.

“This attack occurred because extremists feel threatened by the progress that is being made with reconciliation efforts in Gaalkacyo,” said the head of UNSOM, the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Somalia, Michael Keating.

“The country has suffered enough violence and bloodshed; it is time for reconciliation,” he added. “The people and authorities in Gaalkacyo are courageously finding a way forward; they should not be derailed by this assault on their chances of a peaceful future.’’

According to initial reports, a suicide bomber detonated his explosives in an area of the city known as Jiiro Abdullahi Yusuf, where security forces were stationed, earlier on Saturday morning, killing at least two senior security force commanders as well as civilians. Al-Shabaab has reportedly claimed responsibility.

UNSOM expresses its condolences to the families and colleagues of the victims and wishes the injured a full and speedy recovery.

Opinion: Mismatch of reports concerning the Ethiopian Economy!

Even as the stark contrasting reports are appearing, the reality must hit the fan. You can’t have your cake and eat it too. For me its a hard time reading about the rising economy, when certain other familiar set-backs are reported. Its like you cannot have rainy-season and dry-season at the same time. You cannot have a giant harvest or a drought from the same land. That just doesn’t happen. If this was different republic’s, different nations and different rulers. Then it would be possible different results. But when were discussing the narrow place. It just doesn’t make sense.

First I will cover that good news, that got Ethiopia on CNN, than after that I will take a report coming from the local ESAT, Tesfanews & AfricaNews. These are striking differences to the narrative coming from CNN. Which doesn’t make sense to me.

CNN says:

Ethiopia’s economy is predicted to grow by 8.5% this year. The figures signal continued economic expansion following a long period of impressive growth. In the last decade, Ethiopia has averaged around 10% economic growth, according to the IMF” (Giles, 2018). This gives a favorable outlook with a fantastic economic growth. If that was true. Why does this other report says otherwise.

ESAT Says:

Dwindling imports of wheat has resulted in scarcity of bread in the capital Addis Ababa and the price of a loaf of the staple has doubled. Authorities say the crisis was a result of the foreign currency crunch facing the country. Long lines at bakeries in the capital is a regular scene and owners of the bakeries told local media that they only get half of the wheat flour in quotas. The bakeries say if the crisis continues, they would be forced to close business” (…) “Plans to import 200,000 metric tons of wheat this year have failed due to foreign currency shortages sparking the bread crisis” (De Birhaner, 2018)

TesfaNews says:

The situation has exasperated to the point where factories have been forced to operate under capacity, crucial medicines are disappearing from pharmacies and many goods are not found on shelves of supermarkets. The amount of international reserve has dwindled. It only covers 1.8 months of imports by the end of the last fiscal year” (…) “It is fact that Ethiopia’s economy is troubled by a shortage of foreign currency and it is in a position where it cannot be calmed down by the sudden release of dollars. The economy needs a workable solution. This requires looking into every line of the balance of payment account and coming up with strategies to improve them” (Abdulmena, 2018).

AfricaNews Says:

But those at the speech said Abiy did not outline plans to open up new sectors, a move which could also ease a shortage of foreign exchange. Instead, he said state spending on infrastructure, which has crowded out local companies, would continue. Abiy also told the business community that the foreign exchange shortage that has plagued the country will last for years and more cooperation with the private sector is essential to solve it” (AfricaNews, 2018).

Let’s be clear, this is my view of the situation. Because, the narrative of a rising economy, when fellow reports are that the are lines to bakeries for bread, lack of imports of medicine and factories. That cannot create a vast rise of economy as the IMF and CNN reported. That just don’t make sense. How can the economy grow, when public cannot spend their monies or get the needed imported food? That seems like a pointless.

That the lack of foreign exchange in the reserves, that hits the economy. Supermarkets loosing their goods, medicine from the shelves, bread out of bakeries, all of that should be of a failing economy. Not a rising tiger. The Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defence Force (EPRDF) and the Councils of Ministers has to rig the numbers to the international organizations. Because you cannot have lack of bread, medicine and goods, while also having a high-rising economy. If it was so, then depression of America in the 1920s was the grandest time of the Economy there. But that is just how I view things. Because I don’t have the numbers, but the reports doesn’t make sense.

Its hard to see… rising growth and prosperity, but if it was so, wouldn’t the people have more money to spend at the Supermarket. Not have less products to buy at the Supermarket. Wouldn’t there be more medicine and not less? Wouldn’t the bakeries have bread? Wouldn’t the state have the foreign exchange reserves to import the needed wheat? Then it would be believable. By all means, I want a prosperous Ethiopian Republic. However, the truth cannot be that now. Not during State of Emergency, not during the oppression of the Oromia and Amhara regions. Not during the oppressive behavior and silencing the people. The EPRDF and the TPLF are surely trying to ply the outside world. That is why the ESAT, TesfaNews and AfricaNews not hitting the stands. It is because your not listening to reality, but a narrative creating by the oppressive central government, that doesn’t listen, but only want people to obey. Peace.

Reference:

Giles, Chris – ‘Ethiopia is now Africa’s fastest growing economy’ (24.04.2018) link: https://edition.cnn.com/2018/04/24/africa/africa-largest-economy/index.html

De Birhaner – ‘The Foreign Currency Crunch Is Bad In Ethiopia That It Has Even Caused Bread Shortage in Addis’ (28.04.2018) link: http://debirhan.com/2018/04/foreign-currency-crunch-bad-ethiopia-even-caused-bread-shortage-addis/

Abdulmena Mohammed – ‘Forex Crunch: Ethiopia’s Immovable Object’ (27.04.2018) link: https://www.tesfanews.net/ethiopia-forex-crunch/

AfricaNews – ‘Ethiopia not ready for foreign investment in telecoms, banking: president’ (24.04.2018) link: http://www.africanews.com/2018/04/24/ethiopia-not-ready-for-foreign-investment-in-telecoms-banking-president/

Visiting Ethiopia, UN human rights chief urges new Government to ‘keep positive momentum going’ (27.04.2018)

The United Nations human rights chief on Thursday expressed hope that Ethiopia continues its economic development in which human rights are respected and people can freely speak their minds about public policies.

NEW YORK, United States of America, April 27, 2018 – “We all want to see an Ethiopia with continuous economic development where all people benefit, and where people express their views on public policies, unafraid,” said UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein at the end of his official visit to Ethiopia.

His visit followed the country’s recent transition of power from the Government led by Hailemariam Desalegn, who abruptly resigned as prime minister in March, to the new one led by Abiy Ahmed.

A country with one of the fastest-growing economies in world, Ethiopia has also been riven by human rights violations and oppression on protests by those demanding equality.

“Moments of transition are rarely ever smooth. Ethiopia has struggled with a heavy history, but it has the wisdom of a tolerant, vibrant, youthful population to harness,” said Mr. Zeid, encouraging the authorities to keep the positive momentum going and to keep translating the inspiring words in the Prime Minister’s inaugural address into action.

Mr. Zeid was referring to the Prime Minister’s recognition that there is a “need to address existing inequities that led to recent unrest,” that “democracy cannot be realised in the absence of rights – be it civil or economic rights” and that the “right of people to express opinions, rights of people to organise themselves and engage in effective dialogue and participate in the governance system is inherent in our humanity…not for any government to bestow…as it sees fit.”

The UN rights chief also welcomed the release of a large number of people, including bloggers, political opponents and others who had been detained in relation to their participation in protests and their criticism of the Government.

“There was tremendous hope, but also anxiety,” he said, citing the words of a former political detainee, who said: “we have repeatedly been victims of broken promises.”

During a visit to the Oromia region, Mr. Zeid met with the regional authorities and the traditional leaders, known as the Aba Gadas, who he said spoke about how they will continue to push for the truth to be told about what has happened over the past few years, including deaths during protests.

“They demanded investigations and accountability for excessive use of force by the authorities. They expressed their desire for justice and human rights for all Ethiopians and for their voices to be heard without fear of reprisal,” Mr. Zeid said.

On Wednesday, the UN Human Rights Office for East Africa and the Ethiopian Government signed an agreement to strengthen the Office’s ability to do human rights work in the country and the region.

The Office has already offered its assistance in revising the charities and societies proclamation, the anti-terrorism legislation and the mass media laws.

“In this 70th anniversary year of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, when too many leaders risk reversing hard-won human rights gains, we look to Ethiopia to continue to give cause for optimism and hope,” Mr. Zeid said.

NUSOJ: Journalists’ union accuses Somali Ministry of Information for faking sincerity to resolve journalists’ safety crisis (23.04.2018)

The PAFD Press Statement On Ongoing State-Terrorism And Government Instigated Ethnic Conflicts (18.04.2018)

The TPLF/EPRDF army and security apparatuses are wrecking mayhem throughout Ethiopia as the operation of State of Emergency intensifies with degree of unprecedented barbarism in Oromia and throughout the country, even after the new PM has been appointed by TPLF/EPRDF. The killing of dozens of unarmed civilians is also intensifying in various Oromia regional state as are the imprison- ment of civilians in Ogaden Somali since the new PM, Dr Abiy Ahmed has sworn in on April 02, 2018. The PAFD categorically condemns with all possible terms the EPRDF/TPLF’s State terrorism in Ethiopia and urges the EPRDF/TPLF to call for an urgent transitional arrangement.

The inauguration speech of the new PM has been meticulously crafted with a lot of positive attributes albeit with the objective of achieving one key target of erroneously uplifting the spirit of often dejected mass. All peoples of Ethiopia who’ve lost hope and trust in TPLF/EPRDF during its 27 years reign of divide and conquer thought there is going to be a glimmer of hope, although it has become apparent that nothing has changed apart from paying lip-services.

Meanwhile, the killings of and an arbitrary detention of civilians has increasingly continued in various regions with severity in Oromia. The instigation of ethnic conflicts between peacefully coexisted nations such as the Oromo and Gedeo, Oromo and Ogaden Somali and the rest is increasing albeit the imposi- tion of State of Emergency and murdering of civilians. In Oromia regional state where the TPLF/ EPRDF’s army and security apparatuses are saturated, in addition to April 17, 2018’s Moyale carnage, the daily executions of unarmed dozens of civilians including a pregnant woman known by the name

‘Ayyaantuu Mohaammad Shaanqoo’ in East Oromia Hararge Zone, Mee’sso town on April 8, 2018 has increased. Initially, the indicated Oromo pregnant woman was approached by the Agaazi forces who demanded her for a gang-rape. As she refused to obey their sadistic orders, they forced her to her knees and shot her on her head with three bullets to instantly kill her. Additionally, an elderly Oromo man known by the name ‘Mardaasaa Yaadasaa’ in Qellem district of Wallaggaa zone, Sadii Caanqaa sub district, Koomboo village has been executed by TPLF/EPRDF’s Agaazi on April 13, 2018 who broke into his house before dawn by further seriously wounding his son who is fighting for his life in hospital.

In Ogaden Somali the detention of politicians and deliberately denying water and food to civilians in various districts is widespread as part of indirect killing of hundreds of deliberately targeted civilians

with the objectives of depopulating Ogaden Somali. Moreover, the TPLF/EPRDF’s regime is also de- ploying the Ogaden Somali detainees who have been recently released for a forced labour where the la- bourers are often denied food and water until they die. Today (April 18, 2018) the TPLF/EPRDF’s re- gional agents -the Solomali Liyu militia executed an Ogadeni Somali woman known by the name

‘Rooda Yaasiin Muhumed’ in Kabribayah town of the region for no apparent reason. In Sidama the displacement of thousands of peasants from their lands of Hawassa proximity is intensifying by turning

the majority to virtual beggars in their own land. In Gambella, Amhara, Afar, the entire south and Benshangul, the plights of civilians remain as precarious as it was 15 or 20 years ago. The situation all over the country remains as fluid as it has been a year ago despite the short-lived Euphoria of the majority after the inauguration of the new PM two weeks ago.

Therefore, the PAFD categorically deplores the ongoing killing and arbitrary detentions of civilians in various parts of the country including in Oromia, Ogaden Somali, Amhara, Afar, Gambella and elsewhere. We urge the new PM and his EPRDF’s party to unconditionally lift the State of Emergency, release all political prisoners and call for an unconditional all- inclusive transitional arrangement in Ethiopia to restore law and order that remain distant from the peoples of Ethiopia for the past 27 years.

Finally, the PAFD’s once again renews its calls of London February 2018 all-inclusive confer- ence to opposition groups of all peoples of Ethiopia to unconditionally put aside their differ- ences to agree to work together to achieve the highly-craved democratic changes by struggling in unison. We also call upon all politicians, civic society, academics and religious groups to open their minds and hearts to come to term to realistically address the demands of the major- ity in Ethiopia in unison. Recognising and appreciating the recent approval of House Resolu- tion (HR-128) in America, we finally call upon all the international political players to do more in defending the rights of over 104 million peoples in Ethiopian by unconditionally and fully supporting their struggle until they achieve their dream of living in a free and democratic country where her leaders are held into account for their actions and accountable to their con- stituents.

Justice, Freedom and Equality For All Peoples In Ethiopia!

The Peoples’ Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD), April 18, 2018

Somalia: Puntland Press Release (16.04.2018)

Patriotic Ginbot 7 Movement for Unity and Democracy: On the passage of H.Res. 128 “Supporting respect for human rights and encouraging inclusive governance in Ethiopia” (15.04.2018)

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