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Monday, January 22, 2007

Assassins attack commander of Ethiopian troops in central Somalia

Also in the news: [Witnesses: Ethiopian Troops Kill civilians ] - [Key Somali Islamist surrenders in Kenya] - [Kinijit LA: EPRDF’s Attempt to Disseminate It’s Propaganda Failed Miserably] - [Ethiopia's foreign minister meets Somali president in Mogadishu] - [Stand up comedy in Ethiopia]

International: [Clinton or Obama? Supporters conflicted] - [Bombs kill at least 90 people in Iraq] - [Chavez to U.S. Officials: 'Go to Hell'] - [Top dissident iranian cleric slams Ahmadinejad] - [Suspect In $70M Brazil Heist Found Dead] and more of today's top stories!

Ethiopian Police beat and killed activist Tesfaye Tadesse, age 25, after dragging him out of his friends home. Tesfaye's autopsy revealed that he had lost three of his front teeth and one eye due to severe beating. This is believed to be the sixth politically motivated killing in Addis Ababa, by govt. Police in the past week. (More...)

Assassins attack commander of the Ethiopian forces in central Somalia

The commander of the Ethiopian forces in central Somalia has escaped unharmed after unknown militiamen attacked him as he was driving through Dhuso-mareb city, 500km north of the capital Mogadishu. Reports say on Sunday.

Witnesses said unidentified gunmen threw two hand grenades at the colonel’s car but missed the target. One of the bombs defused while the other exploded.

Bashir Abdulahi Nor, one of the security officials in Dhuso-mareb city, the provincial capital of Galgadud region in central Somalia said the attack was aimed to assassinate the colonel.

“The bomb went off as the Ethiopian commander was riding his small luxury car inside the city around 9:20 pm local time but the explosion has caused no casualty and the commander survived,” said Nor. (More...)

Also see; Ethiopian officer escapes assassination in central Somalia

Kinijit LA: EPRDF’s Attempt to Disseminate It’s Propaganda Failed Miserably

The Consular General’s attempt to hold a meeting of selected EPRDF sympathizers in the middle of Little Ethiopia failed a miserable failure. Employees of the office were shocked when hundreds of dedicated voices of democracy awaited them right at the entrance.

The meeting hall was surrounded by security officials from the LAPD. There were more police officers than attendees. The parking lot stood empty, and the few that showed up to attend drove past the venue when they realized they were going to be confronted. The vocal protesters were highly motivated and creative.

In many instances the police officers approached the protesters often to ask on the meaning of “hodam.”The protesters stayed until the end of the meeting to face all 12 attendees.Their embarrassment was clearly visible. (More...)

Witnesses: Ethiopian Troops Kill civilians

MOGADISHU, Ethiopia Jan 22, 2007 (AP)— Ethiopian troops supporting Somalia's fledgling government killed three civilians early Monday, while a top leader of Somalia's Islamic movement turned himself over to authorities in Kenya, a witness and official said.

The troops were firing at several gunmen who were trying to hide in a house in the Hurwa district, said Mustaf Hassan Ali, who witnessed the shooting. He said the victims were not the gunmen but civilians in the home.

"The Ethiopians fired at the civilians when unknown gunmen sought refuge in their house," Ali said.

Ethiopian troops have come under fire frequently in recent days in the Hurwa district, which is considered a hotbed of sympathizers for Somalia's Council of Islamic Courts. The radical group was driven out of the capital and much of southern Somalia last month with the help of powerful troops from neighboring Ethiopia. (More...)

Key Somali Islamist surrenders in Kenya

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) -- A top leader of Somalia's ousted Islamic movement seen by the U.S. as a potential key to preventing a widespread insurgency there surrendered to authorities and is under protection in Nairobi, officials said Monday.

Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed, who has been described by a U.S. diplomat as a moderate who could play a role in reconciling Somali factions, crossed into Kenya, went to a police station along the border on Sunday and was flown to Nairobi, according to a police report.

The U.S. said it was not involved in protecting Ahmed, who apparently feared for his life in Somalia, where the remnants of his Council of Islamic Courts are being hunted by Ethiopian troops and Somali government forces.

"The U.S. government is not holding or interrogating Sheik Sharif Sheik Ahmed and was not involved in his capture or surrender," a U.S. Embassy official said, speaking on condition of anonymity. (More...)

Ethiopia's foreign minister meets Somali president in Mogadishu

MOGADISHU (AFP) - Foreign Minister Seyoum Mesfin has become the first senior Ethiopian official to travel to Mogadishu since the toppling of its former hardline Islamist rulers as he held talks with top officials.

Seyoum met with interim Somali President Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed at the presidential palace Monday, a fortnight after he took up residence at the Villa Somalia, and had other meetings scheduled.

"They discussed bilateral relations, regional security and the current political situation in Somalia," said a senior Somali government official on condition of anonymity.

"The transitional government is grateful to the government and people of Ethiopia for the sacrifices they made in order to make Somalia a peaceful place where no regional religious extremist could organise themselves." (More...)

Stand up comedy in Ethiopia

(capitalEthiopia) “A day without laughter is a day lost”. Could this be our chance to laugh annually? The first of its kind stand up comedy is to be held on January 24, 2007 at the Hilton Hotel. The event is organized by Ethio-Promotion and Entertainment. Eleven comedians have come together to entertain an anticipated seven hundred people.

At a press conference held Thursday, Ato Eyob Alemayehu, manager and owner of Ethio-Promotion and Entertainment says, “previously comedians used to perform as intermissions during music concerts, now this is their stage to be lead actors. And the aim is to give the opportunity for those who don’t have it.

” The comedians’ representatives Fassil Tekalign and Ato Solomon believe the comedians will shine on their special night. It is going to be their stage although well known musicians will share the stage but only to give the comedians a break this time. “We have humor; we all laugh in our day to day activities. We did not get a chance to laugh about it publicly and here is our chance,” says Eyob.

Stand up comedy is a popular western art form. The comedians deliver their jokes to the audience live. If stand up comedy gets acceptance from the public the organizer is planning to make it a regular event. There might be even a chance to produce the live performance on CD.

The comedians are united to work together with the assistance of comedian Fassil. “The criteria in selecting a comedian is that they be funny and make a point at same time,” says Fassil. He also extends his gratitude to all who made the event possible. The comedians are expected to perform their gigs without any rehearsals.

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