Appeal for Intervention on behalf of Oromo political prisoners on a hunger strike for the last twenty days in Ethiopia.

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Mr. Anthony J. Blinken, The Secretary of State
U.S. Department of State
Washington, D.C. 20520
Fax: 202-261-8577

February 15, 2021

RE: Appeal for Intervention on behalf of Oromo political prisoners on a hunger strike for the last twenty days in Ethiopia.

We, members of Oromo Professional and Scholars Group, appeal to you to intervene urgently on behalf of Oromo political prisoners, who have been on a hunger strike for the last twenty days – protesting the unjust treatment that the Abiy administration is dishing out against the leaders and supporters of bonafide Oromo political organizations.

Some of the prisoners of conscience have reportedly collapsed, and Bekele Gerba – a prominent figure who is a symbol of peaceful political struggle – was denied medical treatment by the prison system, although reports indicate that his condition has deteriorated significantly.

These prisoners are demanding that the ruling party respect the rule of law, observe human rights, give free access to court proceedings for their family members, stop police and security forces intimidation of their supporters and family members, and abandon the practice of taking prisoners to unknown places in the middle of the night. 

The only explanation for the incarceration and inhumane treatment of these prisoners and many other members and supporters of the Oromo political organizations, is the formidable challenge they present to the ruling Prosperity Party of Mr. Abiy Ahmed in the upcoming election, which is expected to decide the fate of the country.  Most of the prisoners have either been vindicated or ordered to be released with bail by the court system. However, the ruling party is holding them even after they have paid the bonds set by the courts. This is clear evidence that the fabricated legal cases against them are meant only to keep them from the political arena until the sham election is conducted uncontested and the Prosperity Party is declared victor. 

We are gravely concerned not only about the immediate life-threatening health crisis that the prisoners are currently facing, but also the message such callous disregard for the lives of Oromo political leaders sends to the Oromo people. If the unthinkable happens to these high-profile Oromo political leaders, we fear that the country might descend into an uncontrollable chaos with dire consequences. 

We thus petition your good office to exert the maximum possible pressure on the Ethiopian government immediately to give appropriate medical care to the prisoners, address their demands, and release them without any further delay.


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18 Comments

  1. Jabessa

    This press release is wonderful. It is good to take our concerns to the world leaders. However, dictators and colonizers do not have common sense, love and respect for citizens. Therefore, our media has to take the above message to our people, so that our struggle should move forward until freedom and justice prevail.

  2. Benti Nemara

    🇺🇸 should act immediately before we lose these portions

  3. Siraj Awol

    Oromo political prisoners have been on a hunger strike for 21 consecutive days now. They’re critically ill. If anything happens to them, the blame is on Abiy Ahmed’s regime. #StarvingForJustice #OromoProtests @michelekelemen @KarenAttiah @femioke @SecBlinken @LaetitiaBader @hrw

  4. Abbagidi Abbajihad

    What Abiy’s Administration is doing on key Oromo political figures who are starving to death, seeing it as the only way of opposing their unjust imprisonment and abuses on thier family, is against the universal principles of protecting the right and dignity of humans. Please take actions ASAP as we all are really worried and deeply concerned about the direction Ethiopia is heading under the leadership of Abiy Ahmed, a dictator who by any standard should be accounted for the war crimes he and his allies committed.

    1. Muzamil Muhammed

      Pls free jawee Muhammad

      And I’ll oromoo prison

  5. Emmanuel Bedaso

    Why professional and scholars? Is the oromo struggle for professionals and scholars only? What about the others like students, home makers etc… such unintended or intended description of society is unnecessary. If you are writing on behalf of all Oromos that is fine, the intent is clear but the inclusiveness is lacking.
    All is in it in this fight may it be small or large, do not use such verbiage, not needed.
    Thanks
    Emmanuel B

    1. Muzamil Muhammed

      Oromo political prisoners have been on a hunger strike for 21 consecutive days now. They’re critically ill. If anything happens to them, the blame is on Abiy Ahmed’s regime. #StarvingForJustice #OromoProtests @michelekelemen @KarenAttiah @femioke @SecBlinken @LaetitiaBader @hrw
      # freejawarmuhammed

  6. Hawie Tufa

    We have to act faster if we’re going to make a difference in safe our leader form those enemies.

  7. Eyu

    Nothing is top urgent to save the horn of Africa!

  8. Qabso Hussein

    They are in critical condition for the crime they didn’t committed. The Ethiopian government should not only allow them necessary medical treatments, should also release them with out any preconditions.

  9. Jamal Abdullahi

    It is a politically motivated arrest of many people from two big Oromo parties: Oromoo Federalist Congress andOromo Libration Front (OLF) to keep out Election. Those arrests included top Leaders: Like Baqala Garbaa, Jawar Muhamad, Hamza Booranaa, Abdi Raggaasa, Colonel Gammachu Ayyaanaa and many other top leaders and ordinary members and supporters have been suffering in jail. They are political Prisoners and must be released!!

  10. Abdulwohab

    We are running out of time, this is not only about political prisoners, but it is about the consequences that will costs the whole Ethiopia country is unpredictable!

  11. Abdii

    All Oromo political leaders are critical condition due to hunger strike and COVID-19 Ethiopian prime minister Denying their questions and medical need to prisoners of conscience goes against international law. the Ethiopian prime minister Abiy worst than COVID-19 If anything happens to all Oromo political prisoners we will hold Abiy Ahmed accountable. and Ethiopian prime minister Abiy will be responsible for all life lost. the world health organization should give attention for this vindictive war.
    PP delivered to the Ethiopian people war insecurity chaos high cost of living and economic disaster.
    Abiy is incapable of leading.
    #Free Jawar Mohmmed
    #Free Baqal Garriba
    #Free Mohmmed Deyisiso
    #Free Abdii Ragasa
    #Free Shamishudin Tahaa
    #Free Hamiza Borana
    #Free Gamachu Ayana
    #Free all Oromo political leaders.

  12. Kowser

    The Abiy Ahmed government has repeatedly denied court-ordered medical care for all Oromo political prisoners.If anything happens to all Oromo political prisoners will be responsible Ethiopian prime minister Abiy Ahmed.
    #Free all Oromo political prisoners.

  13. Biruk Kore

    International community needs urgently action on the dangerous activities of The most racist political ideology propaganda/organizations in Africa which says “ Ethiopia is only through the most racist political ideology of orthodox Amhara elite leaders politics propaganda “

  14. Abdii

    All Oromo political leaders are critical condition due to hunger strike and COVID-19 Ethiopian prime minister Denying their questions and medical need to prisoners of conscience goes against international law. the Ethiopian prime minister Abiy worst than COVID-19 If anything happens to all Oromo political prisoners we will hold Abiy Ahmed accountable. and Ethiopian prime minister Abiy will be responsible for all life lost. the world health organization should give attention for this vindictive war against of Oromo people.
    #Free Jawar Mohmmed
    #Free Baqal Garriba
    #Free Mohmmed Deyisiso
    #Free Abdii Ragasa
    #Free Shamishudin Tahaa
    #Free Hamiza Borana
    #Free Gamachu Ayana
    #Free all Oromo political leaders.

  15. Kulsuma Gishe

    Kulsuma gishe 2/17/2021
    We have to act faster if we’re going to make a difference in safe our leader form those enemies. ut Election. Those arrests included top Leaders: Like Baqala Garbaa, Jawar Muhamad, Hamza Booranaa, Abdi Raggaasa, Colonel Gammachu

  16. Dera Bo

    Inasmuch as the War Criminal Abiy Ahmed discredits & lives above International Norms, there is a clear message that no country, no leader gives credit to any such a norm/convention! And, that is very dangerous!

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