Twenty-two civic organizations of American Ethiopians wrote a protest letter to the United States Secretary of State over what they call “scandalous reference to the Ethiopian capital” by the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa.
Last week, the embassy shared a message on X (formerly twitter) referring Addis Ababa as Finfiné – a term that radical ethnic Oromo Nationalists including within the Abiy Ahmed’s administration use. The group cliams an exclusive right over the capital Addis Ababa.
The letter from the Ethiopian organizations is featured below.
“Open Letter to Secretary of State Antony Blinken Regarding the Recent U.S. Embassy Statement on Addis Ababa
The Honorable Antony Blinken
Secretary of State
U.S. Department of State
2201 C St. NW
November 25, 2023
Dear Secretary Blinken:
We, the undersigned civic organizations of American Ethiopians, express, in the strongest terms, our outrage at the recent scandalous reference to the Ethiopian capital, in an official Tweet by the US Embassy in Addis Ababa, using the controversial Finfiné, which is a name promoted by Oromo extremist groups.
At a time when the people of Ethiopia are fighting for true democracy that is not tainted by ethnic animosity, atrocity crimes or suppression of individual freedoms, the outrageous statement by the American Embassy is not only an insult to the pride and honor of the people, but also a clear violation of all known diplomatic decorum.
As is widely known, ethnic division and hatred have reached unprecedented alarming levels in the country, including ethnically-targeted demolition of Amahra homes in the capital. Indeed, the worsening of the overall situation has warranted the issuance of an alert and a call to action by the UN Special Advisor on the Prevention of Genocide. Therefore, the statement by the US Embassy on such a sensitive issue as the nomenclature of Addis Ababa can only encourage inter-communal violence of unimaginable consequences.
Regrettably, this outrageous and insensitive action by the Embassy will further erode the confidence of the people of Ethiopia in the neutrality of the United States government as an honest broker in the handling of contentious issues, with ramifications that are likely to have dire implications for the stability of the nation, the region and beyond.
We, therefore, demand that the Embassy immediately retract its statement, unambiguously express its apology to the people of Ethiopia, and demonstrably refrain from making such irresponsible statements again in the future.
Honorable Michael McCaul
US House Foreign Affairs Committee
Honorable Ben Cardin
US Senate Foreign Affairs Committee
- Abba Bahrey Forum
- Adwa Great African Victory Association (AGAVA)
- American Ethiopian Public Affairs Committee (AEPAC)
- Amhara Dimtse Serechit
- Amhara Popular Front (APF) Worldwide Support Task Force in the Diaspora
- Amhara Wellbeing and Development Association
- Association of Concerned Ethio-Americans and Ethiopians in the Diaspora
- Congress of Ethiopian Civic Organizations (CECO)
- Ethiopian American Civic Council (EACC)
- Ethiopian American Development Council (EADC)
- Ethiopian Public Diplomacy Network (EPDN)
- Global Alliance for Justice – The Ethiopian Cause
- Global Amhara Coalition (GAC)
- Global Ethiopian Scholars Initiative (GESI)
- Hope for Ethiopia (H4E) New York Tristate’
- Network of Ethiopian Scholars (NES)
- Selassie Stand Up, Inc.
- United Ethiopian Muslims Movement (UEMM)
- Vision Ethiopia (VE)
- Voice of the Victim’s Organization (VVO, የወልቃይት ጠገዴ፣ ጠለምት የልሣነ ግፉዓን ድርጅት)
- Worldwide Ethiopian Civic Associations Network (WE-CAN) “
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