6 July 2015
Re: We wish the planned visit will not send the wrong message to the dictators
Advocacy for Oromia, a non-profit organization incorporated in Australia, to advocate for human rights and for social justice, would like to address the planned visit of US President Barack Obama to Ethiopia in July 2015. We respect the policy of the United States whose foreign policy in principle is committed to promoting the ideals of human rights, the rule of law, and democracy. However, we strongly entreaty to the USA to cautiously assess that such visit will not send the wrong message to the dictators as we are extremely concerned about the human rights abuses in Oromia.
For over six thousand years, the Oromo people maintained a unique national identity distinct from the national identity of Abyssinia. In 1900, the Abyssinian rulers invaded the land of Oromo people and embarked on a policy of occupation and oppression that seriously threatens the continued survival of the unique cultural and religious identity of the Oromo people. Tragically, a world that condemns colonialism has largely ignored Abyssinia’s occupation of Oromo land. The human cost to the Oromo people has been of tragic proportions. Hundreds of thousands of Oromo’s were killed outright or died as the result of aggression, torture or starvation. Over 8,000 sacred places and centre of Gadaa were destroyed.
This trailer of the feature length documentary was recorded by Amanda Walsh a couple or years ago about the human rights abuses inflicted by the Ethiopian Government under the rule of the then Prime Minister Meles Zenawi. Unfortunately, she was never able to find finance for it. Hence, she decided to upload the trailer to the social media.
Filmed/Directed/Writer: Amanda Walsh 2008
(A4O, 30 May 2014) More than 400 Oromo across Victoria, NSW, QLD, TAS, SA and WA will be gathering at Canberra’s Parliament house in a bid to expose the Ethiopian government’s recent human rights violations dubbed “Oromo Protests”.
Since April 25, leaked photographs and videos show Ethiopian security forces shooting live ammunition at unarmed students in universities across Oromia. Reports of 85 students are confirmed as dead, 500 protestors wounded and over 5000 people detained in unknown camp locations as the Ethiopian government restriction of public media is in full force.
In response, more than 30 international cities including Washington, Oslo, Tel Aviv and London have staged mass peace protests, picking up interest globally and trending heavily on social media. US Congress members have also released legislature on May 9 to publicly condemn the violence perpetrated by the Ethiopian government against its people as well as publicly acknowledge and urge the Ethiopian government to respect human rights and democratic processes.
The government violence in Ethiopia continues to escalate in a bid to silence dissent for the proposed land grabbing in the capital city Finfinne (Addis Ababa). The “Master Plan expansion” seeks to dispossess Oromo farmers and displace 1.1 million hectares of land.
Ethiopia’s human rights abuses are well documented by human rights watch and US state departments and the current Oromo protests has renewed support to launch an international investigation to bring the responsible perpetrators to justice.
Federal Melbourne MP, Adam Bandt called for support of the Oromo people during Oromo protests held at Victoria’s State Parliament House.
On Monday, Australian Oromo communities will call on the Australian government to set an example by using its influence in the United Nations to put political, economic and diplomatic pressures upon the Ethiopian government to stop its continued attack on Oromo lives, their political organisations, educational establishments and the right to self-determination.
400 people from Australian Oromo communities Victoria, NSW, QLD, TAS, SA and WA will be gathering at Parliament Drive in Canberra on Monday 2nd June at 10am.
For more information Australia’s Oromo people rally in Canberra, Australia