Home | News    Tuesday 25 August 2009

US envoy lauds Ethiopia’s efforts for peace in Darfur

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By Tesfa alem Tekle

August 24, 2009 (ADDIS ABABA) — U.S Special Envoy to the Sudan lauded Ethiopia’s efforts to bring lasting peace in the western Sudan province of Darfur and in the East Africa region as a whole.

Scott Gration who came to Addis Ababa to mediate Darfur rebel’s unity, made the remarks after he hold talks with the Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi on situation’s in Sudan last Saturday August 22.

Gration said that Ethiopian peace force in Sudan is playing tremendous role in the ongoing efforts to bring lasting peace and stability to Darfur.

The US envoy called on Ethiopia to continue its all over efforts to bring peace in the region.

Meles, on the occasion briefed the envoy about current situation in Darfur, said that Ethiopia’s participation in Sudan’s peace mission is an indication of Ethiopia’s commitment for peace in Darfur.

He reaffirmed that Ethiopia will continue to take its part for the region’s peace, said a government official who attended the talks.

Prime Minister Meles further said that, crisis in Sudan is a big concern to Ethiopia, as a neighbor and to the whole of Africa and must be given continuous attention by all.

Scott Gration is Barack Obama’s special envoy to Sudan who leads U.S efforts to curb troubles in Darfur region. Currently Gration is being engaged in the process of uniting Darfur rebels so a united message would be possible to send to Khartoum government.

Last week four Darfur factions agreed to create front after Scott Gration mediated them in the Ethiopian capital.

(ST)

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  • 25 August 2009 06:01, by Samson Shawel Ambaye

    God’s man Mr. Gration
    God be with you for helping Darfur peace. I ask your cooperation with ICC for arrest of Bashir. Ethiopia doesn’t have leader. woyane leader is Ethiopia’s Bashir.

    GENOCIDE WATCH

    THE INTERNATIONAL CAMPAIGN TO END GENOCIDE

    Genocide Watch is the Chair of the International Campaign to End Genocide
    P.O. Box 809, Washington, D.C., USA 20044. Phone: 703-448-0222
    E-mail:genocidewatch@aol.com Website: www.genocidewatch.org
    March 23, 2009

    An Open Letter to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights
    Justice Navanathem Pillay
    Petitions Team
    Office of the United Nations
    High Commissioner for Human Rights
    UNOG-OHCHR
    1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland

    Dear Madame High Commissioner,
    Advocates of justice around the world are thrilled at the strong action the Prosecutor of the International
    Criminal Court has taken in issuing a warrant for the arrest of Omar al-Bashir of the Sudan, resulting in
    finally holding him accountable for the atrocities being committed in Darfur over the last six years. Under
    al-Bashir’s leadership, millions of Sudanese from Darfur, as well as from Southern Sudan, have suffered
    inconceivable harm, injustice and hardship.
    The action that the International Criminal Court has taken in this situation has restored hope to peace and
    justice loving people, affirming that international human rights law not only exists on paper, but in reality.
    It also sends an important message to perpetrators throughout the world that impunity for their crimes is not
    assured forever; which may be a primary reason that one of the first leaders to defend Omar al-Bashir and
    condemn the warrant was Prime Minister Meles Zenawi of Ethiopia, whose government has also been
    implicated in a pattern of widespread perpetration of serious human rights atrocities in Ethiopia and in
    Somalia. He and those within his government may be keenly aware of their own vulnerability to similar
    actions by the ICC in the future that could upend a deeply entrenched system of government-supported
    impunity that has protected perpetrators from any accountability.
    I first became knowledgeable regarding the abhorrent human rights situation in Ethiopia when Genocide
    Watch and Survivors Rights International were called by the head of the Anuak Justice Council, Obang
    Metho, (now the leader of the newly formed Solidarity Movement for a New Ethiopia) to investigate the
    brutal massacre of 424 Anuak carried out in Gambella, Ethiopia in December of 2003. The Anuak are a
    tiny, dark-skinned ethnic group who live in a remote section of southeastern Ethiopia.
    Ethiopian National Defense Forces (ENDF) and civilian militia groups from another ethnic group utilized a
    prepared list to target Anuak leaders, many of whom were opposed to the government’s plan to exclude
    them from any involvement in the drilling for oil on their indigenous land. As militia groups chanted,
    “Today is the day for killing Anuak,” both the military and militias used machetes, axes and guns to kill the
    unarmed victims, frequently raping the women while chanting, “Now there will be no more Anuak
    children.”
    Extra-judicial killings, rape, disappearances, destruction of livelihood and the displacement of thousands of
    Anuak continued into late 2005 before finally subsiding when the same Ethiopian National Defense Forces
    were moved to the Ogaden area of southeastern Ethiopia and into Somalia where similar atrocities were
    and still are being committed. A subsequent investigation of the Anuak massacre by Genocide Watch and
    Survivors Rights International to determine who was behind the human rights crimes, documented the
    existence of a plan called “Operation Sunny Mountain,” that could be traced to originating at the highest
    levels within the central government of Ethiopia.1
    1 See: http://genocidewatch.org/Today%20is%20the%20Day%20of%20Killing%20Anuaks.htm ;
    http://genocidewatch.org/EthiopiaAnuakOperationSunnyMountainGWSRIReport13December2004.htm
    and updates at www.genocidewatch.org/alerts/anuak.htm ; and
    www2.ohchr.org/english/bodies/cerd/docs/ngos/IHRLC.pdf .

    GENOCIDE WATCH
    THE INTERNATIONAL CAMPAIGN TO END GENOCIDE
    Genocide Watch is the Chair of the International Campaign to End Genocide
    P.O. Box 809, Washington, D.C., USA 20044. Phone: 703-448-0222
    E-mail:genocidewatch@aol.com Website: www.genocidewatch.org
    As a result of our investigation and based on our experience in international law and genocide, we
    concluded that the killing of the Anuak in Gambella, Ethiopia, fit the definitions of genocide and crimes
    against humanity. Human Rights Watch also conducted two investigations of their own and determined that
    the crimes against the Anuak meet the stringent definition of crimes against humanity.
    Most of the perpetrators in their report and in ours have never been brought to justice under the Ethiopian
    justice system due to the failings and corruption of that system. Despite the violation of international law,
    not only has no one has been held accountable for these crimes which occurred over five years ago, but
    worse than that, such crimes continue in other places in the country.
    Only some of these cases have been investigated by respected international human rights organizations, but
    where they have, findings consistently point to the involvement of the Ethiopian government in the inciting,
    the empowerment or the perpetration of crimes against humanity, war crimes and even genocide, often
    justified by them as “counter-insurgency.”
    In light of these facts, I would strongly urge you to initiate an investigation of the situation in
    Ethiopia based on your proprio motu powers as the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights.
    We believe that your investigation is justified due to the culture of impunity that exists within Ethiopia.
    Extensive documentation is available to examine the violations, most of which has been compiled in
    independent investigative reports completed by international human rights organizations. We also believe
    that the Ethiopian people have been waiting long enough for genuine justice and relief from the harsh
    oppression and brutal tactics committed by a government that purports to be a partner in the War on Terror,
    while terrorizing their own people. Addressing the EPRDF regime, friendly to Omar al-Bashir, may bring
    greater stability to the entire Horn of Africa.
    We are willing to provide assistance to you in carrying out this task because we, in Genocide Watch, and
    other human rights organizations are determined to pursue justice, even long after violations have occurred,
    as part of our mission. Investigative reports, contacts and other information can be provided should you
    need them.
    I thank you for the excellent work you are doing in combating impunity, the enemy of justice. Perpetrators
    of crimes against humanity must not be allowed to walk free. Genocide Watch will continue to do its part,
    collaborating with others, in pursuing additional ways to make such crimes carry a heavy penalty. One way
    is to work with domestic governments to make sure that those Ethiopians who have committed these crimes
    do not gain access to entry into western countries, something that is now supported through new legislation
    in many of the western countries. Additionally, in Canada, Europe and in the US, there are now laws giving
    authority to these governments to prosecute human rights perpetrators found within their new countries of
    residence should admissible evidence be found to charge them. The western countries should no longer act
    as a haven for such criminals.
    Thank you for your consideration of this request for the initiation of an investigation of genocide, crimes
    against humanity and war crimes in Ethiopia. We look forward to hearing from you.
    Sincerely yours,
    GHStanton
    Dr. Gregory Stanton,
    President of Genocide Watch

    Obama scolded Ethiopia’s dictator Meles Zenawi
    April 3rd, 2009 | Categories: Ethiopia | 19 Comments
    U.S. President Barack Obama scolded Ethiopia’s dictator Meles Zenawi during a brief one-to-one encounter at the G20 meeting in London on April 2. Obama reportedly told Meles that the human rights condition in Ethiopia is deplorable and unacceptable.
    Following a meeting with Obama, Meles Zenawi, who was invited to represent New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) at the G20 meeting, abruptly canceled a press conference he was about to give.
    "His people gave no reasons for this. But insiders in the press center said Zenawi was worried about the kind of questions that were going to be put to him concerning human rights violations within Ethiopia and his dealing with his opponents and Ethiopia’s neighbors," Henry Gombya of BSN reported.
    "The African continent really wasn’t heard; South African President Motlanthe said he didn’t speak for the continent and Meles Zenawi cowered in the shadows," Gombya writes.

    Ethiopia: Genocide Watch calls on UN to initiate action against Meles

    By Abbay Media News
    Posted to the web on March 31, 2009

    Genocide Watch, the international campaign to end genocide, has called on United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Justice Navanathem, to initiate an investigation against the government of Meles Zenawi. Genocide Watch cited the atrocities committed in Gambela against the Anuaks and ethnic Somalis in the Ogaden as examples of the crimes that have not been seriously investigated by the UN body.
    In an open letter Genocide Watch President Dr Gregory Stanton wrote to the Commissioner, he commended the International Criminal Court for indicting the Sudanese President, Omar Hassan Al Bashir, but noted that “one of the first leaders to defend Omar al-Bashir and condemn the warrant was Prime Minister Meles Zenawi of Ethiopia, whose government has also been implicated in a pattern of widespread perpetration of serious human rights atrocities in Ethiopia and in Somalia.”
    “He and those within his government may be keenly aware of their own vulnerability to similar actions by the ICC in the future that could upend a deeply entrenched system of government-supported impunity that has protected perpetrators from any accountability,” Dr Stanton noted.
    The Genocide Watch President asserted that a UN investigation was justified due to the culture of impunity that existed within Ethiopia and underlined that “extensive documentation is available to examine the violations, most of which has been compiled in independent investigative reports completed by international human rights organizations.”
    “We also believe that the Ethiopian people have been waiting long enough for genuine justice and relief from the harsh oppression and brutal tactics committed by a government that purports to be a partner in the War on Terror, while terrorizing their own people,” the letter noted.
    Dr Stanton said that Genocide Watch and Survivors International confirmed that the atrocities committed in Gambela against the Anuaks in 2003 “fit the definitions of genocide and crimes against humanity. Human Rights Watch also conducted two investigations of their own and determined that the crimes against the Anuak meet the stringent definition of crimes against humanity.” He also indicated that Genocide Watch was willing in providing assistance to the Commission in carrying out the investigation.
    “We in Genocide Watch, and other human rights organizations are determined to pursue justice, even long after violations have occurred, as part of our mission. Investigative reports, contacts and other information can be provided should you need them,”
    he said.
    Read the Open Letter from the President of Genocide Watch, Dr. Gregory Stanton to the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Justice, Navanathem Pillay



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