My name is Getaneh Yismaw, a concerned US Citizen of Ethiopian origin from Springfield, VA. I’m following up with two phone conversations I had with your associates (11/08/2019 & 11/13/2019) and today writing to your organization to once again ask you to stop collaborating with the OROMIA MEDIA NETWORK (OMN), an organization involved in hate speech and hate crimes. In my phone conversation, I was told that OMN’s accounts have been on hold and that Network for Goods is not disturbing funds but hey wouldn’t give me that decision in writing as there appears to be no firm decision, which is very concerning to me.
Since October 23, 2019, at least 86 innocent civilians have been murdered in Ethiopia, often beheaded, or with their mutilated bodies dragged on the streets. Christians and non-Oromo ethnic minorities have been selectively targeted and killed and their properties burned down. To date, several dozen Orthodox Churches have been burned down.
These deadly incidents were triggered by the Facebook post of Jawar Mohammed, the executive director and founder of the OROMIA MEDIA NETWORK (OMN).
Jawar Mohammed is a high profile figure in Ethiopian politics, with 1.7 million followers on Facebook. Since 2014, Mr. Mohammed has been mobilizing millions of young people using the OROMIA MEDIA NETWORK as well as his Facebook page. He has encouraged and funded the youth to engage in confrontational and violent tactics against ethnic Amharas and the Orthodox Church.
Jawar Mohammed is believed to get elicit funds from Middle Eastern countries. He frequently travels to Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.
Please note that OROMIA MEDIA NETWORK is also in violation of your organization’s Terms and Conditions as stipulated on your website.
If you proceed with disbursing the collected amount, please be advised that your institution will be collaborating with an organization engaged in disseminating and inciting hate and violence against a group because of their religion and/or ethnicity.
I am, therefore, urging your organization to stop disbursing the funds you have collected thus far (over USD $300,000). The funds will contribute to enabling more hate speech and hate crimes, resulting in the deaths of many more innocent civilians.
If you still refuse our collective plea and plan to proceed, you will not have heard the last from me (and others): we will exercise our free speech and hold demonstrations against your organization for facilitating hate speech and hate crimes, like this demonstration in Seattle, WA that was held yesterday, Nov 17, 2019 against Jawar Mohammed, and explore all legal options we can muster.
I look forward to hearing your decision.