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News: Parliament passes resolution to observe a minute of silence for victims of atrocities, form a special committee to investigate

The Parliament’s six-point resolution was signed off by Speaker Tagesse Chafo. Picture: HoPR

Addis Abeba – Members of the House of People’s Representatives (HoPR) held a special session today on current security affairs in Ethiopia focusing on violence and atrocities against civilians perpetrated in “Oromia, Gembella, Southern Nations, Nationalities and People’s region, Benishangul Gumuz, Afar and Amhara regional states and in various others parts of our country.” The statement did not mention Tigray regional state.

Accordingly, the Parliament released six-point resolution authorizing, among others, one minute silence for “unjustly massacred citizens”, and establishing “a special committee” to be appointed by the senior leadership of the Parliament, and mandated to investigate the matter in order to enable the Parliament and the people of Ethiopia to have “adequate information” as well as make “recommendations on the next course actions.”

Accordingly, the Parliament has issued the following six-point resolution signed off by Tagesse Chefo, Speaker of the House:

A) To hold one-minute silence for unjustly massacred citizens

B) To hold accountable individuals who have caused deaths, injuries, and property damages to civilians in any region or areas of our country;

C) For the leadership at all levels, the security forces, and the judiciary to ensure the safety and security of our people; and to bring perpetrators to justice;

D) Urgently rehabilitate displaced persons into their villages;

E) The people of Ethiopian to stand together in brotherhood, solidarity, and unity during this difficult time;

F) A special committee considering the diversity shall be formed by the leadership of the House of Representatives to investigate the matter and provide adequate information to the House and the people of Ethiopia; and to provide recommendations for next course of actions.

The Parliament’s special meeting took place today a day after Hangassa Ahmed Ibrahim, an MP representing East Haraghe constituency of the Ruling Prosperity Party (PP), went on a live Facebook broadcast Tuesday claiming that the recent atrocities that took place against civilians in Western Oromia, and were blamed on the Oromo Liberation Army (OLA) fighters, were instead planned and orchestrated by the sitting President of Oromia regional state, Shimelis Abdissa, Oromia police Commissioner Ararsa Merdasa, and Oromia PP branch senior leadership. The MP further demanded investigations into the atrocities and accountabilities against those who “orchestrated” the atrocities using clandestine armed group by the current leadership of Oromia regional state.

Previously MP Hangassa had accused the head of Oromia police commission, Commissioner Ararsa Merdasa, of being behind the execution of 14 Karrayyu Abba Gadaas Michilee leaders in East Shewa Zone of Oromia regional state, which was initially blamed on OLA both by the federal and regional governments. An investigation by the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC) later revealed that the Karrayyu Abba Gadaas were “executed” by security forces.

In his broadcast yesterday MP Hangassa told Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to dismantle the Oromia regional state political structure that is under the leadership of Shimelis Abdissa, as well as the arrest and the subsequent trial of Shimelis himself and others who the MP accused of being accomplices in order to end the “continued massacre of civilians” in Oromia regional state. The Oromia regional has not issued response until the publication of this news. AS

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