members of the Boran community living in the USA, are
eagerly following the recent massacre of innocent Borans
by Ethiopian EPRDF soldiers in Moyale town of Kenya.
The despicable act of aggression by Ethiopian Government
soldiers against Kenyans along the border should be
condemned by all. This abhorrent human rights violation
of enormous magnitude should stop now. One would wonder
why soldiers of the neighboring country (Ethiopia) simply
cross the border, kill people on the Kenya side of border
and leave just the way they came and continue doing
the massacre year after year. Why is Kenya government
abetting these heinous crimes?
Borans of Kenya along the border have been victims of
widespread harassment, murder, torture, and detentions
without trial and unexplained disappearances at the
hands of Ethiopian government soldiers. The terror escalated
as soon as the present Ethiopian regime of TPLF/EPRDF
took over from Mengistu's Communist government. The
TPLF government of Ethiopia would like the world to
believe that this government is legitimate and democratic
than previous regimes. Let their record speak for itself.
It is exactly a decade ago and probably they would celebrate
the 10th anniversary since ascension to power, but the
Borans are grieving. They have buried their relatives
and children and continue to bury the dead up to this
day, and this brutal tyrannical regime has inflicted
more pains and suffering to the Borans than any other
time in the history of the Ethiopian empire. We have
no idea how many Kenyan Borans suffered at the hands
of the previous Ethiopian governments, but the evidence
we have of the current Ethiopian government's participation
in the killings of Kenyan Boran along the border is
overwhelming. Every time one reads about the border
clashes, the TPLF government would try the best they
could to paint Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) as the cause
of the problem. They would say their soldiers pursue
OLF fighters across the border and the Borans are harboring
OLF fighters. What a travesty. Shame! Are the Borans
in Kenya OLF supporters? This has been speculated and
Ethiopian government would like you to belief that the
OLF they are fighting are also on the Kenya side of
the border, but the reality is that there is no evidence
to support the allegations. A mere sympathy or ethnic
affiliation does not justify these heinous crimes against
humanity, just because Borans occupy both side of the
border. It is not crime to live along the border, as
a matter of fact, the Borans were living in the area
before the colonists (British & Ethiopia) ever set
foot in the region and demarcated the borderline. However,
the point of our contention is not to argue against
or for border issue but to set the record straight that
OLF do not need the support of Kenyan citizens to win
is true, Borans are part of the larger Oromo. The Oromo
people are the majority in the Ethiopian Empire, (over
25 million) and yet they are being brutalized by this
regime. Oromos have had a long history of suffering
under past regimes and continue to suffer under this
regime as well. The Ethiopian government is perpetrating
daily massacres on Oromo civilians in all regions of
Oromia. The plight of Oromo suffering is now recognized
by Human Rights Organization and has been documented.
OLF is no different from any other freedom fighters,
fighting to gain independence from the yoke of colonialism.
The Oromo people in Ethiopia had no choice but wage
bitter struggle for their inalienable rights to self-determination,
just like all colonized people ought to do. Many Kenyans
may not understand, because they have always been told
that Ethiopia is the only country that has not been
colonized. How little do we know the country bordering
us in the north! Colonists or dictators are color blind,
just because most of colonial oppressors were white,
does not mean that there are not black colonizers. In
the case of Ethiopia, the Abyssinian empire annex all
the regions bordering Abyssinia by force and made them
subjects, the expansion would have continued and taken
over the whole of northern Kenya, had it not been for
the British who eager to expand themselves, quickly
stopped the expansion. Thus, the birth of border line.
recent incident of killings of Kenyans by Ethiopian
soldiers has sparked some discussions and it is clear
that the Ethiopian embassy, as they have done numerous
times in the past, put blame on the OLF and shamelessly
categorized OLF as terrorists. Let's briefly review
what the Ethiopian soldiers did and find out who the
real terrorists are.
verdict is yours. Who are the real terrorists? It is
a well-known fact to many Borans that the current Ethiopian
regime conducts a well orchestrated genocidal acts against
Borans, under the pretext that Borans are supporters
of OLF. The situations have been so serious that many
Borans from Kenya fear the Ethiopian militia for repercussions
as well as they feared the Kenya police brutality. The
reign of terror continues to escalate.
the initial shock wave started with the shocking murder
of the former Governor of Boran region in Ethiopia,
Jattani Ali, in 1992. Jattani was killed in Nairobi
in front of his hotel room on July 2,1992. Two gunshots
were fired at him. The assassins used two separate firearms
(.38 inch and .22 inch caliber) and the fatal bullets
instantly killed him. The killers were never apprehended.
Haile Kidu Gemechu, the man accused, was set free. The
agents of Ethiopian governments crossed the border through
the normal procedure, with a copy of Kenya immigration
form no.18, bearing three names, that of the accused
and other two, who supposedly are believed to be the
killers. But they escaped after they accomplished their
assignment. The local people knew all along that the
Ethiopian government was behind the murder. The anger
of the local people was manifested in the demonstration
that rocked the city of Nairobi in May 1997, after the
death of Hussein Sora, a lawyer working on the case
at that time. The Borans were angry at the benign indifference
of the Kenya government in the face of wanton killings
of their tribesmen by military incursions from Ethiopia.
This recurring incidents have convinced many Boran leaders
in Kenya that the Ethiopian agents are after the elimination
of Borans both in Kenya and Ethiopia. All these killings
are not random act, they were calculated and planned
out to achieve certain purpose. Is the Kenya government
turning deaf ears to all these murders?
murder of Jattani was followed closely by assassination
of Aba gada - the leader of all Boran (Boru Guyo) in
1994, whose decomposed body was found in the bush, then
Hussein Sora, Chief Taro Sora, Chief Buke Liban, Golo
Walde, all community leaders. Here are some other specific
incidence of killings that has been reported in the
Kenya Human Rights Report (1996) and Oromo Commentary
1995: Ethiopian militia attacked Uran village and
raided the home of assistant chief Abakame. They destroyed
his property by fire and killed one person and injured
the chief's wife.
1995: Roob Boke and his three brothers were abducted.
1996: TPLF militia killed Tulicha Kiya and Huqa Bagaja
while they were preparing charcoal in the vicinity
of their homes.
8, 1996: Assistant chief Tara Sora and his wife were
killed when the Ethiopian militia bombed his home
in Modo Adhi in Sololo.
27, 1996: Guyo Miyo a former bodyguard of Jattani
Ali was killed.
1996: Ethiopian bandits attacked Dukana village in
Marsabit, causing 33 deaths.
5, 1996: Anderson Micheni was killed during a shoot
out by Ethiopian soldiers at the National Council
of Churches compound.
12, 1996: Kalicha Dima, from Sololo was abducted.
3, 1996: Hussein Sora, a lawyer died after compiling
a twenty-two-page memorandum to the Kenya Government,
accusing the Ethiopian Government for causing the
act of banditry in Moyale and Marsabit districts.
1996: Ethiopian militia in Modo Adhi (Moyale) shot
1996: Ethiopian militia attacked Galole and stole
8 heads of cattle and a donkey.
May 1997 the TPLF government organized a military
style incursion into Sololo division in Moyale District
and massacred 42 people.
are the real terrorists? Have you reached your verdict?
How many more deaths can we get before something is
soldiers denied their involvement in all these cases,
but the local people have no problem in identifying
them. The soldiers wore their uniforms all the time
they committed those crimes. We are still wondering
why all this happens to those Borans in Kenya. The purpose
was obvious, this tyrannical regime is obviously frustrated
by the ultimate victory of oppressed, and the OLF insurgence.
They do not get all the support they need from the western
world, therefore have resorted to act of desperation,
furthermore, the Borans in Kenya seem to sympathize
with their ethnic members, so what is left for this
regime to do? Look for scapegoat. The Kenya government
also with poor human rights record, and staggering corruption
can easily be fooled to the bait of false alarm of impending
liberation movement close to its border.
are stunned by reaction of the Kenyan government on
the Ethiopian raids that consumed lives of 10 Kenyans,
including police officers in Moyale (Kenya). The statement
issued by Minister of State in charge of security Maj
(Retd) Marsden Madoka accuses the Kenyan victims, and
he further stated that the problem could only be resolved
if the residents stopped hosting OLF activists. That
embarrassing statement sounds familiar. The Ethiopian
version of the story. It is very shocking for the northern
Kenyans who expected guarantee of security for their
lives and property under the constitution of the country.
The allegation of "harboring Oromo Liberation Front
(OLF)" is nonsense. The Ethiopian government used as
pretext to abuse Kenyans. The minister simply echoed
what Ethiopian government was saying to cover up its
misdeeds. The Hon. Minister's motive is obvious, and
it was a desperate attempt to cover-up total failure
of justice system in the country, and inefficiency of
his office to discharge its responsibilities.
doesn't Kenya government do its own homework? We are
talking about citizens of Kenya being killed by neighboring
country, and instead of protecting its own citizens,
the Kenya government seems to support the killers (Ethiopian
soldiers). Why would anyone belief what Mr. Madoka says.
In 1998, the same minister told Kenyans to forget about
the widespread acts of torture committed by the country's
security forces. The Kenya Borans deserve better. The
constitution must guarantee them the protection against
foreign or domestic aggression. Over the years, the
Ethiopian soldiers have continuously perpetuated atrocities
and reign of terror along the border. The wounds of
decade of suffering has left indelible imprint on the
minds of many people in the region. It is unfortunate
that the Kenya Borans could not get protection from
the only government they have so desperately supported.
It is time to think seriously and Moi government should
equally be accountable for the crimes against humanities.
By keeping silent over this injustice committed against
its people by foreign government, the Government of
Kenya is admitting its guilt.
the government of Kenya is aware of any presence of
foreign forces on Kenyan soil, it should exercise its
duties and responsibilities of government and take legitimate
action to insure sovereignty of the country is respected.
This has nothing to do with the civilians; it is a matter
of national security. This is a situation where foreign
aggressor violated the sovereignty of the Kenya government
by killing, kidnapping, torturing, and raping Kenyans,
including those who are on line of duties to defend
was no time that northern Kenyans harbored or hosted
foreign militias; if they did, we are sure the government
would have noticed the presence of this huge forces
that panicked the Ethiopian government. The truth is
that the northerners are just held hostage by ineffective
Kenyan security apparatus and Ethiopian internal turmoil.
The most ugly face of this drama is the allegation made
by the minister to victimize the victims and put the
blame on them for not doing national security job. The
job he is supposed to do.
government of Ethiopia has been getting away with murders
and massacre of innocent Kenyans with out any challenge.
The recent compensation raised by the ministry of foreign
affairs is not enough to restrain this foreign force
from raiding the borders and abusing Kenyans. It is
evident that as long as it can finance its internal
and external war of aggression with foreign relief aid
and loans, Ethiopian soldiers will continue to abuse
Kenya citizens. Therefore, the Kenya government must
stand firm and put an end to this barbaric acts of aggression
against innocent Kenyans by Ethiopian militia.
recent massacre also confirmed what many have believed
all along. Ethiopian soldiers are after the Borans in
Kenya. Some people would argue that the Kenya government,
through its inefficient administrative machinery has
created a hostile environment between Borans and other
people living in the regions. They manufactured tactics
of pitting one tribe against another; as a result, the
local people have lost confidence because of the unsympathetic
and uncooperative attitudes of the government officials.
The administration has been known to take sides and
blamed Borans for supporting the Oromo Liberation Front.
What would one expect from a government whose minister
would utter statements like the one issued by Mr. Madoka.
years ago, the Kenya Human Rights Commission (1996)
from the eyes of the world, the forgotten people of
Moyale and Marsabit are dying from ethnic violence,
local banditry, and abuse by the provincial administration
and international aggression. Murders, abductions,
torture, rape and the disappearance of citizens are
common occurrences. Insecurity and humanitarian need
in this part of Kenya have reached staggering proportions.
above statement epitomizes the existing situations along
the border of Kenya and Ethiopia.
call upon the International community to intervene and
stop these crimes before the world will witness another
kind of ethnic cleansing. It is time to say no! In the
word of John F. Kennedy:
time a man stands up for an ideal or acts to improve
the lot of others or strikes out against injustice,
he sends forth a tiny ripple of hope."
send just tiny ripples of hope through exposure. Let
the justice prevail.
Boran would say,"Dhibba bade, shantamaan barbaadan"-For
the loss of hundred, search with the fifty left. After
suffering a great loss, one must sacrifice more to make
G. Kotile (PhD)-Illinois-USA
Sora Jaldesa, Connecticut, USA
A. Guyo -Washington DC-USA
Boru Sallo- Minnesota -USA
Dima Wako -Tennessee-USA
Jarso Alaka -Tennessee-USA
Jirma Dabasso -Nevada-USA
A. Bule - Pennsylvania, USA
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