On October 2, 2016, The Oromo people gathered in Bishoftu at Lake Har-sadi (40kms away from the Fin-finnee/Addis Ababa) in order to celebrate the traditional Irrecha cultural of thanks giving to the Creator. During such festivals, traditional elders recount Oromo culture and ways of life and popular artists perform traditional and modern folklore and dances. It is a time of happiness and celebration of a new beginnings and thanking of the great spirit for giving us plenty and well-being.
Unfortunately, the TPLF led regime, which is increasingly becoming paranoid and is hell bent on suppres-sing any popular sentiment decided to replace traditional leaders and artists with its own stooges. When the organisers resisted the regime’s machinations and they tried to use force to replace them, the people expres-sed their displeasure by peacefully chanting we want freedom.
The soldiers of the regime immediately started throwing gas canisters and firing rubber and live bullets into the multitude. In addition, armoured vehicle and Helicopters were deployed. Apart from those who fell from the live bullets and stampede inside, which resulted in the death of more than 500 hundred and wounded of thousands.
Unrepentantly and immediately, the regime claimed that the lives lost were due to a stampede and chaos was ascribed to ‘anti-peace and development elements’, TPLF’s ‘bogyman’ to obfuscate its subjects and global audiences. However, the victims affirmed that the TPLF/EPRDF-led government used live bullets, tear gas, helicopter gunships, armored cars, and snipers to terrify and kill Oromo children, elderly, women and all O-romo civilians who’ve gathered to celebrate Irreecha.
Time and again the Ethiopian TPLF/EPRDF’s regime has shown its unpreparedness for peaceful resolution of political differences. Yet it’s resorted to responding to any peaceful popular demands with bullet and un-precedented level of violence. The Ethiopia‘s army continually terrorize the Oromo civilians and other pe-oples in Ethiopian since this régime has assumed power in June 1991 and never accepts responsibilities for ongoing tragedy of the Oromo nation and the rest peoples of Ethiopia.
The Oromo fathers and mothers, sisters and brothers, aunties and uncles, grandmothers and grandfathers; and the entire Oromo community is mourning for its loss. The PAFD member organizations and their wider peoples will unconditionally stand with the Oromo nation at this difficult time in its resistance history. This massacre committed on Oromo nation by TPLF’s regime is a preplanned targeting one ethnic nation with aim of disrupting and eliminating its national festivity therefore it’s intent is genocidal. The PAFD member organizations fully support the cause of the Oromo nation and stands shoulder to shoulder with the Oromo and other peoples in Ethiopia whilst fighting, the regime communally brutalizing us all until we assert jus-tice, freedom, democracy and the rule of law for all stakeholders of the country.
Therefore, we urge the TPLF/EPRDF’s regime to unconditionally stop terrorizing the Oromo nation and others.
PAFD calls upon all members of the Federal Police, Army and Federal security forces and Local paramilita-ry forces to stand with the struggle of oppressed peoples of Ethiopia in respective areas
PAFD calls upon all opposing forces in Ethiopia to organise a conference to chart out a transitional mecha-nism as soon as possible in order to start a peaceful transition to a genuine democratic change in Ethiopia that will recognise and respect the rights of all peoples in Ethiopia
Call up all peoples of Ethiopia to unconditionally join the current Oromo’s heroic resistance against the communally brutalizing regime until it concedes its defeat and unsuitability for the position of leading over 99 million peoples in Ethiopia.
Call upon all Ethiopians and Ethiopia related opposition parties and organizations to work with PAFD to eli-minate the regime resorted to violence in the past 25.
Call upon international community and TPLF’s western donors and supports to unconditionally stop sponso-ring the killing machines of the régime.
Finally, we, the PAFD member organizations send our heartfelt condolences to the families of Oromo vic-tims on Irreecha festival and affirm that their pain is ours and we never rest until justice has been done on behalf you and the preceding victims of last 25 years.
Peace shall prevail !
The PAFD Presidium
October 05, 2016.
In PDF format