By Graham Peebles
April 28, 2013 (Redress Online) — No matter how tightly the truth is tied down, confined and suffocated, it slowly escapes. It seeps out through cracks and openings large and small, illuminating all and revealing the grime and shame that cowers in the shadows.
The arid Somali (or Ogaden) region of Ethiopia, home to some five million ethnic Somalis, has been isolated from the world since 2005, when the Ethiopian government banned all international media and most humanitarian groups from operating in the area. Read more…
by GRAHAM PEEBLES
April 19, 2013 (Counter Punch) — No matter how tightly truth is tied down, confined and suffocated, she slowly escapes. Seeping out through cracks and openings large and small, illuminating all, revealing the grime and shame, that cowers in the shadows.
The arid Somali (or Ogaden) region of Ethiopia, home to some 5 million ethnic Somalis has been isolated from the world since 2005, when the government imposed a ban on all international media and most humanitarian groups from operating in the area. Human Rights Watch (HRW), report that the government, “has tried to stem the flow of information from the region. Some foreign journalists who have attempted to conduct independent investigations have been arrested and residents and witnesses have been threatened and detained in order to prevent them from speaking out“. Aid workers with the United Nations (UN), Medecines Sans Frontiers (MSF) and the International Committee of The Red Cross, plus journalists from a range of western papers, including The New York Times have all had staff expelled and/or detained, by the Ethiopian regime, which speaks of democracy yet does act not in accordance with its own liberal constitution and consistently violates international law, with total impunity. Read more…
To: the Ethiopia Election Board
Ethiopia Federal Democratic Republic Prime Minister Office
Federal Affair Minister Office
Ethiopian Defence Force
Somali Regional State President office
All Ethiopia Federal Missions in all over the world
We have received from Aware district in Ethiopia somali regional state a complaint that says the somali regional state election board has excluded isaq people from taking part in the local election held last Sunday. As known, the somali regional govt has recently made three more district out of the former Aware district, in addition to aware district itself. Although the Isaq inhabits the districts, they were excluded from taking part in this election. Read more…
April 13, 2013 (Ogadentoday Press)- Former ONLF officers have defected from Ethiopian troops in Ogaden region, a diplomatic source confirmed to Ogadentoday Press.
The officers were caught in fighting between ONLF and Ethiopian Troops in mid of 2011 after ONLF has crossed Somali borders to Ogaden.
The officers have been detained in Ogaden for a year and later were forced to be a part of Somali regional administrations Paramilitary militia known locally “ Liyu Police,” especially police “financed by the Ethiopian defense ministry. Read more…
March 28, 2013 (Ogadentoday Press)- Think about it, it has been 21years since Somalia had a central functioning government and over 150 years since the Ogaden region was given to the Ethiopians. For all this period of time the politics in the horn of Africa was solely male dominated. Do you think that female leadership can change the fate of horn of Africa?
I strongly believe that female leadership can bring a better change than male leadership can at least in this situation. Women are more emotional thinkers than men are and that gives them a reason to think deeply about consequences of their decisions before they make it. By giving women a chance you are giving the horn of Africa a chance to rebuild, recreate, and restore hope for the millions and million of displaced starving people. Read more…
by GRAHAM PEEBLES
“Every night, they took all of us girls to [interrogations]. They would separate us and beat us. The second time they took me, they raped me… All three of the men raped me, consecutively”.
March 23, 2013 (Counter Punch) — Human Rights Watch (HRW) report in Collective Punishment, along with 15 other female students, this innocent 17 year-old Ogaden girl, was held captive for three months in a “dark hole in the ground” and raped 13 times. This is just one of countless accounts of abuse, from within the Ogaden region of Ethiopia, where it is widely reported criminal acts like these are perpetrated by the Ethiopian military and paramilitary forces on a daily basis. Untold atrocities like this; past and present are awaiting investigation, amid what is a much-ignored, little known conflict in the Horn of Africa. Read more…
ONLF Press Release
March 4, 2013 (ONLF) — Since mid-February, the Ethiopian Army and its Associated militia-the Liyu Police has occupied most of Ogaden well during the rainy season and has imposed draconian scheme to collect illegal money on the poor agro pastoral communities.
The EA is forcing the people to pay the following amounts of Ethiopian Birr per animal and per person every time the families come to water their livestock or draw water from the wells.
An average family may bring to the wells 50 camels, 80 goats and sheep, 2 camels carrying water containers for the families ( Dhaan), four members of the family (5950 Birr a day). This may happen twice for the camel watering and four times for the sheep/goat and people a month. The cost to family for a month will be around 12, 800 ETB, which is equivalent to 640 USD (12800 x 0.05). The cost for a family with 40 cows, 2 water-carrying camels, 2 donkeys, 50 goats and sheep, and 3 family members may be around 10,500 ETB (Ethiopian Birr), which is equivalent to 525 USD. The Ogaden Somalis are the poorest in Ethiopia and forced to pay each month six times the amount of Ethiopia’s annual per Capita GDP of 1200 USD. Read more…
By William Lloyd George
March 1, 2013, JIJIGA, ETHIOPIA (The Globe and Mail) — This harsh region, thought to be rich in natural gas, is beginning to attract foreign investors after years of separatist violence and attacks on oil facilities.
The latest to defy the threats from rebels is Africa Oil Corp., a Canadian oil and gas company that on Sunday announced it had signed a petroleum exploration and production agreement with the Ethiopian government.
Shortly before the announcement, the Canadian company had received a direct warning from the main rebel group. The Ogaden National Liberation Front, which carried out deadly attacks on foreign oil company sites in 2007, issued a statement warning AOC not to pay what it called “blood money” to Ethiopia and saying that “the Ogaden is a battle zone that is not safe for an oil company to operate [in].” Read more…
February 21, 2013 (Ogaden) — Dozens of civilians were wounded yesterday afternoon in crowded Degahbour Bar after Ethiopian soldiers opened fire as confirmed by locals and our reporters on the ground.
Some locals said they heard crackling gunfire from Ethiopian soldiers, whom they described as laughing and drunk. “They were all drunk and shooting all over the place,” said one local resident who refused to provide his name for safety reason.
One of the seriously injured civilian is named Deeq Sheikh Ismail. He was taken to the local hospital where there are no medical Doctors or trained Nurse. Read more…
February 18, 2013, ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) – Ethiopian rebels on Monday warned a Canadian oil company against oil exploration in the country’s east and said the area is unsafe because of fighting.
Africa Oil Corporation should halt all operations until the rebels make peace with the government, the Ogaden National Liberation Front, or ONLF said. The group is blamed for the 2007 attack on a Chinese-run oil field in the region in which scores were killed.
The rebels said in a statement that the company is “conspiring with the government to exploit the region’s oil.”
“ONLF calls upon African Oil to desist from paying blood money to Ethiopia until a just settlement of the conflict is achieved and the people of the Ogaden are in a position to be masters of their wealth and interest,” the statement said.
The Ethiopian government spokesman downplayed the statement saying the region is peaceful and that the rebels don’t pose any real threat. Read more…
By Graham Peebles | MWC News | February 8, 2013
Besieged, abused, ignored
In the harsh Ogaden region of Ethiopia, impoverished ethnic Somali people are being murdered and tortured, raped, persecuted and displaced by government paramilitary forces. Illegal actions carried out with the knowledge and tacit support of donor countries, seemingly content to turn a blind eye to war crimes and crimes against humanity being committed by their brutal, repressive ally in the region; and a deaf ear to the pain and suffering of the Ogaden Somali people.
Around five million traditionally nomadic pastoralists – live in what is one of the least developed corners of the world besieged by military oppression, drought and famine. Read more…
January 20, 2013, Addis Ababa (Ogadentoday Press) – A heavy clashes between, Ogaden National Liberation Front and Ethiopian allied forces of federal troops and Liyu Police took place in Ogaden on Friday.
The fighting began yesterday, and still there are skirmishes in the area, According to reports the fighting took place, Galalshe district in Fiq Zone in Ogaden.
ONLF has stormed into camp, early morning on Friday, and shelled on RPG. Read more…