Cyber Ethiopia

Amb Imru’s Open letter to the Secretary of State John Kerry

August 9, 2013

The Hon. John F. Kerry
Secretary of State of the United States of America
2201 C Street, NW
Washington DC, 20520


I would like to present you my sincere compliments for the strong commitment you have made to solve the difficult problem of the Palestinian and Israel conflict, which may be key to the general instability that prevails now in the Middle East.

I am writing this letter to bring to your attention the serious political and social crisis that is developing in Ethiopia and the area of the Horn of Africa. Ethiopia with the second largest population in Sub-Saharan Africa has an important Geo-political position that encompasses the Red Sea, the Arabian Peninsula, the Indian Ocean and in general Africa and the Middle East. It is also a repository of two major Religions, Christianity and Islam, whose adherents have cohabited the land for over 1300 years, and have shared common sacrifices and struggles to maintain the freedom and independence of their country Ethiopia.

In the past two decades , for reason deemed to be of US national interests, the ruling regime in Ethiopia has enjoyed the unbound political and economic support of the United States, in spite of its blatant violations of human rights, lawless governance, unmitigated corruption and overall misdeeds with complete disregard to the very principles that the US advocates. The regime’s flagrant interference both in Christian and Muslim religious affairs has created rifts and contentions amongst the religious communities. In the past the regime was boasting to have broken the back of the Orthodox Christianity with similar terrorization of innocent civilians; at this moment, in the guise of an unproven terrorist activity, it is conducting indiscriminately a most vile campaign of terror, mass arrests, killings and tortures against the Muslim Community in Ethiopia.


For the United States policy makers neither economic development nor any strategic interests can justify such unlawful and criminal behavior, without incurring an expansion of such kind of crisis in other areas; nor should the US must be viewed as accomplice to this kind of foul play. In view of the important political and strategic importance the United States gives to Ethiopia and the area of the Horn, I would like to suggest that immediate measures be taken to alleviate the present dangerous situation and bring a legitimate democratic rule to the country. It is time for the United States to stand with the people instead of supporting armed criminal political regimes.


Imru Zelleke
(Ambassador of Ethiopia Ret.)

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The then-TPLF-dominated regime in Ethiopia was the first in sub-Saharan Africa to actively engage in political censorship of the Internet .

Since May 2006, the most popular Ethiopian web sites (including CyberEthiopia) and several blogs have been blocked across the nation. The apparent objective was to prevent the dissemination of information that is critical of the regime.

Following the political protests which have swept the nation since November 2015, the regime has routinely shutdown the Internet and restricted access to Social Media (including Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, Viber) and indicated its keenness to control Social Media.

On 22nd June 2018, the new Prime Minister Dr Abye Ahmed's government reported that it had unblocked 264 websites including after 12 years of blockage as attested by the OONI’s thorough verifications of our website’s unblocking .

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