By: Rally Participant in New York City
April 29, 2015
On April 28, 2015, Ethiopians residing in the tristate area of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut held a candlelight vigil in New York City (Time Square) for Ethiopians shot and beheaded by Islamic State (IS) affiliated armed militants in Libya. The IS released a horrifying video on Sunday, April 19, 2015 via social media.
The candlelight vigil event brought together the Diaspora community members to pay tribute to all victims and to share our sorrow, anger and frustration for evil acts committed by the IS militants. At the rally, religion leaders, professionals, – human rights activists took turn and spoken loudly in denouncing the heinous act committed on our fellow citizens. Some of the banners read “Ethiopian Lives Matter”,” Save Ethiopians from Islamic Militants terror”, “We stand with people of Ethiopia” etc. and chanted denouncing the IS criminal acts. It was unified messages throughout the two–hour rally. The event was organized by concerned Ethiopians living in metropolitan area of New York City. The rally was called within few days using social media, conference calling and face books and the turnout was impressive.
In time of grief, most of us turn to religion and prayer for solace and peace. This is understandable. However, no matter how many rallies held or talked about this horrible act, we will not find solution unless we manage to stop root cause migration. On the other hand, the ethno-centric TPLF regime media has continued fostering disinformation. Their cronies try to maintain the status quo and want us to stay as bystander. We must have to work hard to turn things around and start discussing how to solve the problem.
The increased ruthless repression, human rights abuses, specter of living with, no jobs, no voice, unimaginable government corruption and an uncertain future, are among the few causes to force Ethiopians youth flee en masse out of the country. It is clear that the ethno-centric TPLF regime does not learn from history, so it is doomed to repeat all follies. Over the past two decades, the misguided policies are leading Ethiopia toward to the category of failed states.
Woyane – the ethno-centric TPLF regime demonstrated their willingness and ability to jail, torture, kill opponents by the thousands in the past 23 years. Anti-terrorism law has been used as pretext to arrest journalists, members of the political opposition and ordinary citizens.
The ethno-centric TPLF regime initially denied the Libya killing and took them 24 hours to admit this undeniable fact. As reported by social media video, the regime responded with the massive use of Federal Agazi force and local police to the violence erupted during Addis Ababa demonstrations against IS militants. . The police fired tear gas followed by savagely beating up the unarmed peaceful protestors. Some protestors were severely wounded in and some were arrested. The regime blames the opposition parties and Ginbot 7 for their crackdown actions. What’s interesting about this, though, is the rally was organized by the regime for its own face saving.
The cause of migration is the ruthless repression, brazen ethnic–based discrimination; persecution, rampant corruption, and the list goes on. To this date, large numbers of journalists, opposition party members, activists and other fair minded people are languishing in prison. The private media are inexistence; genuine peace, freedom, justice; equity and prosperity are swept under the rug. The citizens are constantly spied upon by cadres, digital surveillance and land grab negotiations are conducted by cadres on which citizens have no say. Faced with the above realities, we have no choice except to confront the regime in any way we can. This rally is marked alliance among all concerned free people. We need to capitalize on this success to move forward. Large numbers of diaspora’s community in western countries have been privileged to have education and live in free country. They must bear a responsibility to protest and speak out the TPLF’s deception. Ethiopia’s present predicament does not allow us to abandon it with ease. We need to stop party bickering and avoid succumbing to TPLF’s divide-and-rule strategy.
Ethiopia will prevail!!