- Department of Foreign Affairs
- Office of An Taoiseach,
- Amnesty International Ireland,
- European Commission Representation in Ireland
- U.S. Embassy Dublin
- Fine Gael Headquarters
- Sinn Féin Head office
- Fianna Fáil Head office
On behave of the Oromo Community in Ireland I am writing this appeal letter to you out of the grave concern of the human rights violation in Ethiopia. Oromo community is a registered community charity helping its members to integrate into its host society through different activities. As we are originally from Ethiopia, and still, have connections through the family and cultural heritages we are very much worried about what is currently going on in that unfortunate country where the horror of famine, poverty, and war is never ending. It is our great belief and hopes that your office, as it has been doing before, is able and keen to act on our plea.
The endless mass killings and arbitrarily arrests particularly the undeclared war targeting the Oromo people and their political parties and the war declared against the Tigray people put the country on the edge of collapse.
The current Ethiopian leader Dr. Abiy Ahmed is not willing to solve any problem through political discussion. He is continuously giving deaf ears to the international organisations’ and leaders’ call for a national dialogue and peaceful problems solving. But he rather prefers declaring war against innocent civilians and continued to imprison the competent political party leaders he perceived as challengers to his authoritarian ambitions. In addition to arresting thousands of Oromo political leaders, the government and its operatives continued harassing the imprisoned members and their family members who visit them.
The Ethiopian government does not want to implement the legal system and rule of law it supposed to uphold. On many occasions, it has rounded and rearrested tens of the prisoners who were freed by the courts of the country. Because of such and other many undeclared and unseen human rights abuses; the Oromo prisoners are now on hunger strike for the past 15 days. There are languishing in Ethiopian notorious prison cells and in many unknown concentration camps. There are reports coming out of the country that stating these prisoners are now very weak, and some of them are sick as the result of the continuous hunger and related health problems. Some media outlets reported today that some of those on hunger strike were collapsed and taken to hospitals. Some of the Oromo prisoners who are currently on hunger strike for the last 15 days are the prominent leaders and members of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), and that of Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC) such as Mr. Bekele Gerba, Mr. Jawar Mohamed, Dr Gadaa Olijira, Mr. Abdi Ragassa, Mr. Mahamad Ragassa, Mr. Mika’el Boran, Mr. Kennassa Ayyaana . There are many thousand members and supporters of these parties suffering in Ethiopian prisons and unknown concentration camps.
Currently, state terrorism in Ethiopia is exacerbated against the Oromo people and other nations and nationalities. Some of the rights, these nations achieved through years of struggle are at risk because the current administration and those who want to bring back the feudal ruling system of old Ethiopia are working against the will of the people. Because of this the country is on the verge of collapse and disintegration. More than 80% of the country’s population want to develop and preserve their cultures, languages and ethnic identity through democratically federated Ethiopia; while only small portion of the population want to bring back the unity system because its suitable for their dominance through one language and one culture.
The Oromo and other nation’s patience for coexistence are being misunderstood and they are betrayed and marginalised from the self-governance and power for hundreds of years until the 1991 revolution which brought about a better change to the country. Today, the Oromo, the Tigre and other nationalities like to establish an all-inclusive, democratic government system where every language, culture, and identity of the people are welcome and where fair and equitable political power, economic share, and social atmosphere is guaranteed and respected by communal law and constitution.
But against these fair and equitable demands for social justice, current Ethiopian leaders are working against the will of the people of Ethiopia. What they say on state and international media is completely different from what they do on the ground. The Ethiopian government and its operatives are continuously changing the political dynamics of the country to an authoritarian, and assimilationist system. To do this, the government put much of the country, especially Oromia, the largest region in area and population, under martial law for the last three years.
The war in the Tigray region is one example of the declared war against the public demand for democracy. Today, many international NGOs and news media are reporting that millions of people in Tigre and exposed to famine because the Ethiopian government is not willing to give access for the humanitarian organisation to the region.
There are also reports coming this week that south Oromia, people in Borna and Guji are dying from starvation caused by drought. These zones are the centers of conflict and under military rule for the last three years. In all these situations, women, the elderly, and children have suffered unspeakable human rights violations of all nature.
Despite these unprecedented political, social, and economic turmoil, the Ethiopian government is planning to hold a national election in a few months’ time. While many leaders and member of major opposition political parties from all regions are jailed, their offices are closed without any court order, and their supporters were being harassed or put to prison, the Ethiopian government plan to go for national election is a clear call for further public mayhem. If the government is not willing to discuss with all stockholders and make a lasting agreement the country will lead to further chaos and disintegration.
We, the members of the Oromo Community in Ireland. Would like to appeal to your honorable office, to partner with other International Community including the human rights organizations in this country to intervene and push the Ethiopian leaders to release all political prisoners and discuss that country’s future with all stakeholders to arrive at a lasting solution to this country’s past, present, and future political, economic and social problems that continuously dragging the life and livelihood of the people of Ethiopia.
Therefore, we the member of Oromo the community in Ireland ask your honorable office to:
· Urge the Ethiopian government to stop killing our people just because they demanded their human and natural rights
· Urge the Ethiopian government to immediately release all Oromo opposition political leaders without preconditions so that peace and stability will be restored and they are allowed back to their duties.
· Ask the Ethiopian government to remove the unconstitutional and illegal command post that has been forcefully put in Oromia and undertaking inhumane and illegal actions on our people.
· Urge the Ethiopian government not to interfere with the legal system of the country and let the courts work independently.
· Push the Ethiopian leaders to give priority for dialogue and discussion for solving the political problems of that country than using war and power as a means of political resolution.
· Urge the Ethiopian government to halt the unpopular national election that is to take place in months’ time up until all political prisons are free, the offices of the oppositions are open and until the suitable political atmosphere is established in the county for such election to be free and fair.
Oromo Community Ireland