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Monday, November 20, 2006

Getz # 10 – And In Conclusion . . .

Also in the news: Text of Judge Wolde-Michael Meshesha's Speech to the US congress , Clarification from Qaliti Qalkidan, Ethiopia says it will reject Eritrea border ruling, U.N. envoy urges Somali govt to talk to Islamists

International: Eyewitness: 'We are living in the trees', Israeli forces launch raids in Gaza, Poisoned Russian spy moved to intensive care, Masked gunman injures 20 at German school raid and more of today's top stories

Ethiopian Jewish men use umbrellas to protect themselves from the sun during a prayer of the Sigd holiday on a hill overlooking Jerusalem, Monday, Nov. 20, 2006. The prayer is performed by Ethiopian Jews every year to celebrate their community's connection and commitment to Israel. About 80,000 Ethiopian Jews live in Israel, many of them came in massive Israeli airlifts during times of crisis in Ethiopia in 1984 and 1991. (AP Photo/Emilio Morenatti)

Clarification from Qaliti Qalkidan

Qaliti Qalkidan, a network of Ethiopians who are committed to the cause of the immediate and unconditional release of the prisoners, held a meeting in Washington DC immediately following the NA meeting on November 18, 2006. It is Qaliti Qalkidan, and not KNA who hosted the members of the Inquiry Commission, Judge Frehiywot Samuel and Ato Mitiku Meshesha. This meeting was open to all concerned about the human rights situation and not only to members and supporters of the KNA, although both meetings were held in the same venue.

Ethiopia says it will reject Eritrea border ruling

ADDIS ABABA, Nov 20 (Reuters) - Ethiopia said on Monday it would not recognise any demarcation of its contested border with rival Eritrea, telling an independent commission its plans would be illegal and "must be rejected".

The Horn of Africa neighbours fought a 1998-2000 war over a frontier area of dusty villages and scrubby plains, in which 70,000 people were killed. Although a 2000 agreement ended the conflict, the peace process soon ground to a halt after Ethiopia rejected the commission's border. (More...)

Getz # 10 – And In Conclusion . . .

November 2006. One year later. One year since the breakdown of summit talks between GOE and CUD leaders. One year since the call for another round of nonviolent protests, which triggered rounds of indiscriminate killings.

One year since the Government arrested more than a hundred Ethiopian critics and charged them with crimes punishable by death in a trial marred by unfair procedures and inexcusable delays. One year since the Government called for an investigation into the killings that has resulted in defections of two high-ranking judges and a report that identifies no particular wrongdoers.

One year, in which 50% of Ethiopia's children continue to live in diagnostic levels of serious malnutrition; tens of thousands died of AIDS; more than one thousand Ethiopians perished from floods due in part to environmental degradation, floods which left another 280,000 homeless. And the misery grinds on.

It was a year in which Ethiopian Americans organized effectively to launch a controversial bill designed to promote democratization efforts, thereby provoking the Government of Ethiopia to fight back by spending a huge amount on lobbyists. What all those resources diverted to American legislative processes might have done for Ethiopian relief and, yes, Ethiopia's own democratic processes! (Indeed, what good might have been done if all Diaspora Ethiopians had also made a serious contribution to improve life at home in an area like medicine, engineering, education, IT, or water resources?)(More...)

Text of Presentation of Judge Wolde-Michael Meshesha, Vice-Chairman of the Inquiry Commission on Post-Electoral Violence

Mr. Chairman, I would have liked to come and make my presentation in person. I regret that I could not have made it.

Mr. Chairman, thank you for giving me the opportunity to share with you the work of the Inquiry Commission, which was set up to investigate the 2005 post-electoral violence in Ethiopia. I am particularly grateful for Congressman Donald Payne who initiated this briefing which I believe would help Members of Congress and friends of Ethiopian to understand the process which the Inquiry Commission followed to reach to its conclusions. It is also important what happened once the Commission completed its work. The Government of Ethiopia first attempted to suppress and then to revise the conclusions of the Commission. (More..)

Today's top stories

-U.N. envoy urges Somali govt to talk to Islamists
-Eyewitness: 'We are living in the trees'
-Israeli forces launch raids in Gaza
-Poisoned Russian spy moved to intensive care
-Iraq Reopens Diplomatic Relations With Syria
-Masked gunman injures 20 at German school raid
-Play it again and again and again, Sam..