January 25, 2016

Oromo: Civil Society and International Bodies Condemn Violence

On 22 January 2016, the Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa issued a statement, emphasising the recent attention accorded by the United States, European Union and United Nations to the human rights situation in Ethiopia. While The European Parliament, through a recent urgent resolution, calls for a credible, transparent and independent investigation into the killings of at least 140 Oromo protesters and into other alleged human rights violations, the HRLHA condemns the state sponsored violence, calling on the Ethiopian government to “immediately withdraw its special force "Agazi" from the Oromia Regional State and bring the perpetrators to justice.”

 

Below is the statement published by the Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa:

The tireless voices for the voiceless spoken by human rights organizations such as Amnesty International (AI), Human Rights Watch (HRW), the Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) and others- for decades-about the gross human rights violations in Ethiopia have caught the attention of the world and finally the hard truth has been revealed.

The US Government, the EU parliament and UN experts condemn the killings, detentions and kidnappings in the Oromo Nation by Ethiopian Government forces. The Oromo nation demand and that their basic freedoms and fundamental rights be respected in their own country.

The USA Government in its statements of December 18, 2015"The United States, Calls for Meaningful Dialogue About Oromo Community Concerns" and 14 January 2016 " The United States Concerned By Clashes in Oromia, Ethiopia "condemned the Ethiopian brutality against peaceful protestors and urged the government of Ethiopia to permit peaceful protest and commit to a constructive dialogue to address legitimate grievances.

The European Union in its debate on 21 January 2016 discussed the "Human Rights Situation in Ethiopia". The EU Parliament strongly condemns the recent use of violence by the security forces and the increased number of cases of human rights violations in Ethiopia. It calls for a credible, transparent and independent investigation into the killings of at least 140 protesters and into other alleged human rights violations in connection with the protest movement after the May 2015 federal elections in the country.

The UN Experts in their release of 21 Jan. 2016: "UN experts urge Ethiopia to halt a violent crackdown on Oromia protesters, ensure accountability for abuses". They called on the Ethiopian authorities to end the ongoing crackdown on peaceful protests by the country’s security forces, who have reportedly killed more than 140 demonstrators and arrested scores more in the past nine weeks.

The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa appreciates the statements coming out from different governmental agencies and governments exposing the ethnic persecutions and crimes against humanity in Oromia Regional State by Ethiopian Government forces in which over 180 Oromo nationals from all walks of life have been brutalized by the special force "Agazi" , over 8, 050 Oromo were arbitrarily detained and where large numbers were kidnapped and taken to an unknown destination.

To stop further human catastrophes in Oromia Regional State, the HRLHA urges the world community to continue putting pressure on the Ethiopian government:

To immediately withdraw its special force "Agazi" from the Oromia Regional State and bring the perpetrators to justice To unconditionally release the detainees To compensate, all casualties have been done by the government-sponsored criminals To abort the state of emergency declared in Oromia Regional State All authorities who were involved in the present political crisis in the Oromia Regional state, including the PMs special advisor AbayTseye and the PM of Ethiopia HailemariamDessalengn, should be stripped of their government responsibilities To allow independent investigators into the country to conduct an investigation into the present and past gross human rights violations in Oromia Regional State