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HomeEthiopian NewsHigh profile gov't official calls for an immediate withdrawal of Defense Force...

High profile gov’t official calls for an immediate withdrawal of Defense Force from Amhara region 

Gedu Andargachew _ Ethiopian news _ Fano
Gedu Andargachew ( Photo : SM)

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Gedu Andargachew says military actions are not a solution to the problem in the Amhara region of Ethiopia. He also expressed concern that work is underway to incite hate, especially among the Oromo, towards Amhara. 

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Former Foreign Affairs Minister of Ethiopia, Gedu Andargachew, made on Monday what is said to be a historical speech at the Ethiopian Parliament that was called to approve Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s cabinet imposition of state of emergency in the Amhara region that resulted in a full fledged ruthless military campaign.

While reasoning out why he was opposing the State of Emergency measures citing failures on the part of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government over the past four years, Mr. Gedu was heckled at least three times including by the Deputy Speaker of the House of People’s Representative , Lomi Bedri. 

The Speaker of the House, Tagesse Chafo whose home region Gamo is reportedly protesting the government, did not preside over the parliamentary session for unspecified reasons. 

The key point of Gedu Andargachew,  who has also served as president of the Amhara region for a long time, is   that the problem in the Amhara region of Ethiopia is political and that military action will not solve it. 

He was a key political player and comrades in arms  with Abiy Ahmed and his ethnic Oromo colleagues within the then Oromo People’s Democratic Organization during the political struggle to end Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) tyrannical rule – a process that resulted in the resignation of former president Haile Mariam Desalegne paving a way for the then ruling party to pick Abiy Ahmed as Prime Minister. 

“We have not learned from the past five years. …The ruling party is the problem. It creates a political problem and resorts to military means to resolve it…” Gedu said with a tone that seemed bitter and sad at the same time. 

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s administration has mobilized the entire state media and regional states to frame the grievance led Fano Movement as a movement of “hooligans and hoodlums.”

Gedu Andargachew trashed that narrative when he said that the movement in the Amhara region has a cause, a legitimate one,  and needs to be addressed through a political dialogue. 

The link between the ruling Prosperity Party and people in the Amhara region of Ethiopia is broken permanently, he added, withstanding the heckle from the regime supporters in the parliament and the deputy speaker.  In that regard, the solution, for him , is to institute an all inclusive transitional administration in the region.  He was bold to state that the ruling party, who used to enjoy popular support in the past, has no legitimacy in the Amhara region at this point. 

He vehemently opposed that what is happening to the Amhara region could happen to other regions tomorrow and that it is in the interest of parliamentarians from other regions to oppose the military action in the Amhara region. 

Moreover, recalling the loyalty of the people in the region for central government institutions and  the support they used to have for the defense force, he called on the military to immediately withdraw from the region and enter the military barracks. 

Government mobilization of political support for its military campaign against the Amhara region is one that is painting an image of the emergency of rebel groups in the region whose cause is “looting.”  Abiy Ahmed’s administration went to the extent of making regional states write what sounds like generic statements condemning the Fano movement. The regime has coined a name for the movement – Jawisa – which many of the regional states used in their statement. 

Gedu Andarachagew’s speech in the parliament  resonated well with many Ethiopians- as expressed in many social media platforms- and there are speculations that Abiy Ahmed’s government might arrest him. 

Last week, Christian Tadele, a member of Parliament, and Kassa Teshager, member of Addis Ababa City Council, were arrested while their parliamentary immunity was not lifted.  The government also mounted crackdowns in Addis Ababa and many cities in the Oromia region targeting ethnic Amhara and thousands were detained.   The Command Post that is overseeing the state of emergency measure said only 25 people are arrested in Addis Ababa.

Local media outlets are reporting war crimes and genocide in the Amhara region. 

In the past few days,  the Ethiopian Defense Force intensified attacks in the Amhara region targeting civilians. Yesterday, a drone attack in Finote Selam reportedly killed at least 28 and wounded 20 others. Artillery shelling in Bahir Dar, Gondar and Debre Berhane Towns reportedly killed dozens of people including four family members in Bure town. 

In Shewa Robit, there were reports that government forces reportedly took out many unarmed youth from their homes and shot them in the head. 

Ethiopian Human Rights Commission expressed concern and recommended to the government on ways of avoiding human rights violation in the course of enforcing state of emergency measures. It also called on parliament, on Sunday, to carefully assess the state of emergency legislation – including their necessity. 

When Abiy Ahmed met with his cabinet members and his party officials in connection with the problem in the Ethiopian Orthodox church, he mentioned  ( and this one is on a recorded video) that there were killings during the Derg era but “ours will be far more worse than that.” 

The “ours” reference is unclear whether he meant the ruling Prosperity Party or something else. 

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9 COMMENTS

  1. I’m not concerned about the heckling this fellow countryman and government official dealt with. First of all those who did the heckling showed themselves to be insolent and fools. Secondly, heckling can happen. One of the reasons I like to watch the UK parliament during the PM’s questions and answers sessions is the approval and disapproval noise members reacting with. But this heckling shows those who were heckling this fellow citizen have no appetite for different opinion. They could have waited until Obbo Gedu finishes his remark and present their counter remarks. That is the civilized way. But, you know, that is not the way them niggers know. All they know is this mind sickness that goes like ‘You know nothing and am the only who knows everything. In fact, I am the only one who can think. You can’t’. This has been a chronic disease that has refused to leave that country alone. But you better not touch this man. Don’t even think about it.

  2. Ato Degu presented his fact based case eloquently in civilized and responsible manner. I applaud him. Who would not want to solve problems through reasoned discourse?

    Solving problems starts with agreement among concerned parties on specifics of problems/issues such as those pointed out by Ato Degu. Once consensus is reached on the sources of the problems, the next step should be to reach agreement on workable solutions on agreed priority issues. I think he is right to recommend transitional administration in the Amhara region since the ruling party appears to have lost the confidence of the people there (I would not suggest that venue be considered for the federal government though). I recognize Abiye has done many good things for the country, but his silence on issues such as those mentioned by Ato Degu has costed him support, particularly by the Amhara population and others with mixed parental heritage.

    Over the last at least fifty years, Ethiopia had witnessed multiple violent overthrow of governments, which pushed the country backwards economically and politically rather than laying the foundations for steady economic, political, and social development. We should put an end to that tradition, and chart new ways of governance such as laid out by Ato Degu.

    Take lesson from Rwanda, which came out of horrendous ethnic based killings of nearly one million citizens to re-invent a country that is very peaceful, and harmonious with steady economic performance that is second to none in Africa (ad the World). If Rwanda was able to do all that, Ethiopia which claims to have had ‘3,000 years of civilization’, but in reality was never colonized by rogue white people of Europe, and in fact was able to defeat a powerful wannabee colonizer Italy, should be able to do even better than Rwanda.

    • Greetings Worqu Belayneh.
      I STOP reading and searched my brain to get affirmation that I know you from far past happy times in school.
      Finally, I got it. It is the first name that kept my attention, but alas, not the second name.
      And so, in any case, I read your commentary and loved your SOBER way of handling the subject matter.
      I love your last paragraph >>> Indeed, Ethiopia with ‘3,000 years of civilization’, should NEVER fall down in the gutter of squabbling. Indeed, it QUOTE: “should be able to do even better than Rwanda” UNQUOTE (X)
      —————————————————–
      (x) I hope the Readers will NEVER interpret the nine-words statement as anything but admirable to our Fraternal State Rwanda.

  3. Meanwhile, I hope the two warring sides will point down their guns and head to the dialogue table. This is what has been a simmering argument that escalated into an armed confrontation. It is more an emotional issue than a survival. The government should listen to the issues and arguments and the opposite side should accept the rule that there will be only one armed group that answers to the federal government. But I guess I may be dreaming about that because the poison has already been spread through out that country like wild fire since 1991. National territory has been ripped apart and replaced by this hate filled regional territory. You preach that to the hapless and gullible youth any threat real or imagined to its territory will send the youth into the wilderness in droves. Now the only job the unemployed youth can secure is going into the bushes and pick up Putin’s or Xi’s AK47’s. That is the only option the youth can muster now. Bigots know that and will that from the bottom of the deck. Sad but true.

  4. Now the name of this official has started ringing bell with me. He was one of a part of that close knit group of officials that successfully brought down the then sitting officials in 2018. I remember reading articles about a group that called itself Team Megersa that catapulted the current PM Abiy to his current position. He was entitled to his opinion then and he is entitled to his opinion now. Don’t even think about touching him. I would appreciate it very much if our very dear editors fully translate(fitly) what he said during his speech. Thank you very much.

  5. Ethiopia signed the UN Genocide convention on Dec 11, 1948 and ratified on Jul 1, 1949.

    Excerpts of the convention are herewith presented verbatim in quotation. Emphasis of the discussions and actions to ensue should be on collecting precedents, presenting the audio, video and any written documentations of abiy ahmed ali and his oromumma cohorts and accomplices five years of reign of horror and terror.

    UN Genocide Convention Excerpts (Ethiopia is a signatory and thus the UN has jurisdiction in the matter)!!!!!!

    “Article I

    The Contracting Parties confirm that genocide, whether committed in time of peace or in time of war, is a crime under international law which they undertake to prevent and to punish.

    Article II

    In the present Convention, genocide means any of the following acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group, as such:
    (a) Killing members of the group;
    (b) Causing serious bodily or mental harm to members of the group;
    (c) Deliberately inflicting on the group conditions of life calculated to bring about its physical destruction in whole or in part;
    (d) Imposing measures intended to prevent births within the group; (e) Forcibly transferring children of the group to another group.

    Article III

    The following acts shall be punishable:
    (a) Genocide;
    (b) Conspiracy to commit genocide;
    (c) Direct and public incitement to commit genocide;
    (d) Attempt to commit genocide; (e) Complicity in genocide. Article IV

    *******Persons committing genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in article III shall be punished, whether they are constitutionally responsible rulers, public officials or private individuals*******

    Article V

    The Contracting Parties undertake to enact, in accordance with their respective Constitutions, the necessary legislation to give effect to the provisions of the present Convention, and, in particular, to provide effective penalties for persons guilty of genocide or any of the other acts enumerated in article III.”

    So the laws and the tools are in our hands. PLENTY OF EVIDENCE HAS BEEN COLLECTED AND ENUMERATED. THE SUBJECTS OF INTEREST AND THEIR IDENTITIES ARE ALL WELL KNOWN, ENUMERATED AND PROFILED. LETS GET TO WORK!!!!!!!!!!! AND ALSO FINISH WHAT HAS BEEN STARTED.

  6. Ethiopian Federal Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (FEACC-የፌደራል የሥነምግባር እና የፀረ-ሙስና ኮሚሽን(ፌ.ሥ.ፀ.ሙ.ኮ.) authorities should confiscate all the money and property of corrupted religious leaders and support displaced and hungry people, including those who lost their families and wounded soldiers. 

    The state should intervene, bring corrupted criminal religious leaders and mahibrekidusan(Mahibreseytan-ማህበረ ሰይጣን) mafia members to justice, and confiscate all their riches obtained through corrupt means.

    Ethio 360, Abebe Belew, Habtamu Ayalew, Geletaw Zeleke, and his accomplices must be brought to justice for promoting killings of officials, violence among ethnic groups living in poverty, and hatmony.

    Down, down, Fanno robbers, killers, and servants of Shabiya

    ——————————- Ethiopian authorities should Dismantle Mahibrekiduisan (suppoters and sponsors of Fanno).———————

  7. Since 2018 there were tens of thousands of exiles who returned to the country thinking peace has finally returned. Now they may be starting to have a 2nd thought about it and we may see their exodus by every means they will get. O boy!!!!

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