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Ethiopian Parliament exonerated rebel groups from designation as terrorists

Ethiopian parliament _ Amnesty
Ethiopian Parliament Building
Source : EBC

July 5,2018

Ethiopian parliament unanimously passed a decision to remove three rebel political organizations from the list of terrorism today.

On June 29,2018, that the council of ministers sent the decision to the Ethiopian parliament to cross off names of Arebegnoch Ginbot 7 (AG7), Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) and Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) from the list of terrorist organization in Ethiopia.

It was seven years ago that the Ethiopian parliament passed the decision to add the names of the above three political organizations to the lists of a terrorist organization.

Ephrem Madebo is one of the key leaders of Arbegnoch Ginbot 7 movement and he had the following to say as a reaction to the decision :

“I knew it was coming, now it’s real! PG7 is out of the terror list that it should have never been to begin with. Now the last impediment is gone…”

Decision of the Ethiopian government is purportedly informed by the assumption that broadening the political space in Ethiopia, as was pledged during the executive committee meeting of the ruling coalition in December 2018, in a way to remove all forms of barriers for rebel groups to participate in a peaceful political process is the interest of building democracy in the country.

The rebel movements’ excluded from terrorist designation have not yet issued an official statement on today’s decision by the Ethiopian parliament.

However, Arbegnoch Ginbot 7 (AG7), whose military wing was based in Eritrea, announced that it pardoned what the organization called 28 infiltrators, who were on a mission for the Ethiopian government, in response to the release of its members from Ethiopian prisoners.

Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), on the other hand, is rumored to have rather deployed a rebel contingent to the parts of Ethiopia like Nekemte. Pictures showing the story are circulating in social media.

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