The Ethiopian Government Revitalizes Its Destructive War on Tigray in Addition to the Ongoing Overlooked War on Oromia and Beyond.
August 31, 2022 (For Immediate Release)
Press Statement by the United Front of Federalist and Con-Federalist Forces of Ethiopia (UF) on Recurring Civil Wars and Associated Crisis in Ethiopia.
Unfortunately, the international community remains ineffective and unwilling to end the genocidal war in Ethiopia. Despite the international and domestic goodwill bestowed upon Abiy Ahmed when he assumed power in 2018, he has rather proven to be a warmonger who is hellbent on consolidating his power through repression and waging war on own citizens. Apparently, Abiy Ahmed and his regime’s reckless actions have brought Ethiopia to a breaking point.
While the war on Tigray began on November 4, 2020, Abiy Ahmed however laid the groundwork for war long time before the indicated date by limiting investment in Tigray, targeting and arresting Tigrayans, and using dehumanizing rhetoric against ethnic Tigrayans. Since the genocidal war waged on Tigray by allied forces involving foreign invaders in November 2020, at least 500,000 Tigrayans were killed and deprived of lifesaving aid to Tigray. Moreover, ethnic Tigrayans throughout Ethiopia become the subjects of ethnic profiling and obliged to be put into various temporary and semi-permanent concentration camps. In addition to the war that was aimed at targeting Tigray, there have been perniciously lingering wars and series of conflicts with varying intensities in Oromia, Kemant, Benishangul-Gumuz, Sidama, Agew, Gedeo, Konso, Ogaden Somali, Afar, Wolayta, and other parts of the country since Abiy Ahmed has assumed power.
The ongoing war in Oromia is increasing with intensity as federal forces and allied militias terrorize and kill civilians for their alleged association with the Oromo Liberation Army (OLA). Therefore, under the pretext of targeting the OLA, swathes of Oromia’s vast state are left without electricity, internet, and other basic services, including health and education. In addition to the man-made starvation occurring in Tigray, the effect of severe drought is affecting many parts of Ethiopia, including Oromia, where the government is systematically hampering the flow of humanitarian aid to use famine as a weapon of war.
Additionally, the Ethiopian government and allied forces have heavily repressed indigenous citizens in the Benishangul, Gambella, Shakicho, and Konso. Agew and Kemant civilians were continually subjected to mass execution, displacement, and dispossession of their cattle, properties, and lands by the Ethiopian National Defense Forces and Amhara militias.
The Ethiopian government has instigated conflicts and wars between the neighboring, brotherly nations, and nationalities such as Afar and Somali or the Tegaru and Afar who have peacefully coexisted for generations. Furthermore, Addis Ababa also becomes extremely volatile as city dwellers are engulfed with fear and uncertainty. Ethiopia, the Africa’s second-populous country, is indeed engulfed in civil war, conflict, insecurity, and exponentially rising inflation.
International actors were hopeful that a negotiated ceasefire between the Ethiopian Government and the Government of Tigray would improve humanitarian access and brings about peace and stability; yet those hopes were dashed when the Ethiopian government violated the humanitarian truce by attacking Tigrayan forces on August 15, 2022. A disturbing pattern has emerged when the Ethiopian forces recently suffered heavy military defeat. After losing the battle they vindictively started terrorizing and attacking of noncombatant civilians including children and frail senior citizens. The latest example is that the Ethiopian forces’ air bombing of a kindergarten in Tigray’s capital, Mekele, on August 26, 2022, where young children and women were predominant victims.
Relentless and premeditated actions of Abiy Ahmed’s regime made it abundantly clear that the regime’s apparatuses and its leader are uninterested in pursuing peaceful political solution to the ongoing civil wars. Thus, the international community must make every effort to exert pressure on the regime to end its wars that have destroyed lives and livelihoods, as well as the overall economic, social, security, and political environment. Abiy Ahmed’s actions not only destabilize Ethiopia, but the Horn of Africa, and global security.
Therefore, the United Front (UF):
- Condemns with the strongest possible terms the recent and ongoing air bombardments that have killed children and civilians in Tigray, during the strike of a kindergarten in a residential neighborhood on August 26, 2022, and demands the perpetrators to be brought to justice.
- Urges the Ethiopian government to unconditionally lift Tigray’s siege by restoring basic services including, banking, telecommunication, food, medicine, electricity, and unfettered access to humanitarian aid.
- Urges the Ethiopian government to unconditionally stop its war in Oromia and restore all essential services stopped since 2019.
- To unconditionally remove all foreign forces, including the Eritrean army and intelligence apparatuses, from Tigray and the rest of the country.
- Strongly urges the Ethiopian government to immediately agree to an all-inclusive national dialogue; to be able to salvage the remaining slim hope thereby realize just, peaceful, comprehensive, and lasting political settlement in Ethiopia.
- Calls upon the international community to take concrete and urgent measures to stop the Ethiopian government from wreaking further havoc that potentially leads the country to a violent disintegration with a worsening humanitarian crisis; whereby the consequences will be far-reaching, impacting the entire region and the wider world.
Issued by UF on August 31, 2022