Ethiopia is currently ruled by a brutal minority regime led by the Tigrean People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) an organization still registered as a terrorist organisation in the Global Terrorism Database (GTD) with appalling records on human rights and democracy.
Following a litany of gross violation of human rights and political repression for over 25 years Ethiopians have been protesting since November 2015 for their human dignity, constitutional and land rights. The peaceful protests to air legitimate grievances in Oromia and Amhara regions which accounts for over 2/3 of the Ethiopian population has been intense. The solidarity of the Oromos and Amharas that are marginalized from political and economic life is considered to be the greatest threat to the minority regime in Ethiopia.
On October 9th 2016 the regime, which has lost its legitimacy to rule, declared a six month country wide state of emergency. Under the draconian emergency law that has effectively put the country under TPLF military rule officials in the country have shut down mobile Internet service, blocked social media and prohibited public gatherings. Thousands of Ethiopian protesters were gunned down by the brutal security forces. By the government’s own stated admission of crime, over 11, 000 thousand citizens are locked up in various prisons around the country.
The state of emergency is designed to inculcate fear among the protesters and to give legal cover to the crimes against humanity the despised minority regime has committed so far, and is prepared to commit in the future, as it fights for its survival.
The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights on October 10th, 2016 urged Ethiopia to allow international observers to investigate the recent killings by its security forces excessive use of force, which the Ethiopian regime has rejected. It is to be recalled that the European Parliament on January 21st, 2016 adopted a powerful resolution demanding that Ethiopia respect the basic constitutional rights of its people.
On December 1st, 2016 Dr. Merara Gudina, Chairman of the Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC) was arrested upon his return to Ethiopia from Brussels where he met with EU parliamentarians. He was invited to testify at a hearing of the European Parliament along with Prof. Berhanu Nega, Chairman of Patriotic Ginbot 7 and Olympic athlete Feyisa Lilesa on the current political crises and the egregious human rights violations being committed by the regime in Ethiopia.
The U.S. State Department stated “that the Ethiopian regime is using the emergency law it declared in October to silence dissent and the arrest of Dr. Merara Gudina was “yet another example of increasing restrictions on independent voices in Ethiopia.
The European Parliament’s Subcommittee on Human Rights on December 12th, 2016 urged the Ethiopian regime to make public any charges against Dr. Merara Gudina, and Ms Ana Maria Gomes wrote to the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/ Vice President of the Commission, Federica Mogherini, to take strong measures against the Ethiopian government which has absolute disregard for the respect of human rights, namely freedom of speech.
In an absolute travesty of events, it is reported that the brutal regime has mobilized its surrogates who were granted political asylum under false pretence of fleeing from persecution in Ethiopia and living in Europe in freedom to launch a petition campaign against the European Parliament and Ms. Ana Maria Gomes for demanding that Ethiopia respect international human rights norms that it is bound to uphold under the Cotonou Agreement. It is imperative that the immigration authorities of European countries investigate the refugee status of these fraudulent asylum seekers, TPLF cronies and spies in the service of the repressive regime in Ethiopia and take the necessary legal action against them.
We the undersigned and the European Task Force for Human Rights and Justice in Ethiopia fully support the request of Ms. Ana Maria Gomes, calling for the European Parliament to take a strong action against the repressive regime in Ethiopia and demanding the immediate and unconditional release of Dr. Merara Gudina.
We appreciate the tireless effort of Ms. Ana Maria Gomes in support of fundamental human rights and the democratic aspirations of the Ethiopian people. We strongly condemn the malicious and smear campaign against a highly respected member of an EU Parliamentarian by the brutal minority regime of Ethiopia.
Ms. Ana Maria Gomes is an ardent defender of human rights, freedom and democracy speaking against repression and injustice in Ethiopia. As the distinguished statesman Edmund Burke once said, “All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent”.
Originally posted at AbbayMedia