Addis Ababa Gears Up for Grand Peace Rally amidst Ongoing Conflict

The Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Party (EPRP) has formally requested the Mayor’s office to permit a grand peaceful demonstration aimed at addressing the escalating conflict in various parts of Ethiopia.

Scheduled for December 10, 2023, under the banner “Stop the war! Peace be upon us, let the defense forces return to their camp immediately!”, this demonstration seeks to bring attention to the dire situation the country is facing.

The organizers, in their plea to the government, will advocate for an immediate cessation of hostilities, the withdrawal of the army from regions where it is currently deployed a return to army bases, and an initiation of political dialogues.

The Addis Ababa Mayor’s office has been urged to collaborate with this peaceful initiative, led by the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Party (EPRP) and other concerned citizens.

Vice-Chairman of EPRP, Pastor Biluye Abraham, highlighted the collective effort of his party and other patriotic members in calling for this rally as a means to salvage the nation.

The peaceful march is set to commence from the Arat Killo Monument of Victory Square, winding through various streets and squares, concluding at Meskel Square, where the message of the day will be conveyed.

The organizers anticipate a turnout of more than 100 thousand people and have called upon the Addis Ababa Police to fulfill their constitutional duty of ensuring security and safety during the demonstration.

Specifically, the coordinators emphasize the demand, especially in the Amhara and Oromia regions, for the army to cease operations outside the context of war and return to their bases.

Prominent figures, including politicians like Yeshiwas Asefa and other patriotic Ethiopians, are actively involved in the coordination of this peaceful demonstration.

The urgency of such initiatives stems from the ongoing conflict in the Amhara region, where government security forces are engaged in a protracted battle with Fano militants.

Due to a war in Amhara region, heavy fighting are undergoing since April and a six-month state of emergency has been declared in the region, coupled with a complete internet shutdown since July.

The conflict has garnered international attention, with calls from United Nations Human Rights Commission, United States, European Union, and numerous other countries, urging an end to the violence and a return to negotiations.

A recent report from the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission underscored the devastating impact on innocent citizens due to frequent drone and heavy weapons attacks by the government.

The Fano militants, having gained control of significant areas in the Amhara region, are countered by government claims of a gradual improvement in the region’s peace situation.

Arega Kebede, recently appointed as the president of the Amhara region, acknowledges an ongoing military operation aimed at reclaiming control of cities and government institutions from militants.

The impending grand peace rally in Addis Ababa signifies a collective call for resolution, urging all stakeholders to prioritize dialogue over conflict in the quest for lasting peace in Ethiopia.

Three years ago, a war erupted in northern Ethiopia that persisted for two years, culminating in a peace agreement brokered by the African Union. This conflict claimed the lives of 800 thousand Ethiopians and left over one million citizens injured.

By ethionegari@gmail.com

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