Somalis mad as hell at Ethiopia
With the collapse of the new Somali government, Somalis look for answers

By Abdi Dirshe


Toronto - Allegations of threat and intimidation of Ethiopian intelligence agents towards a number of Somali parliamentarians raise new questions of Ethiopia's involvement in the Somali peace process. For the past week un-known masked individuals in the Kenyan Capital, Nairobi physically attacked several Somali parliamentarians where the peace process was ongoing for the past two years. These acts of violence and other threats of death, according to several Somali parliamentarians, are carried out by Ethiopian secret agents working at their Embassy in Nairobi.

These parliamentarians allege that these agents are doing so in retaliation of the recent collapse of the newly selected government led by Abdullahi Yussuf, an Ethiopian backed Somali warlord. It is believed that they want to make sure that these parliamentarians stop opposing their man, Mr. Yussuf, who they be-lieve will surely serve the Ethiopian interest in Somalia.

Somalis everywhere are outraged at the actions of the Ethiopian government. Somalis are discussing these issues at the coffee shops, on the radios and at their homes. They are saying enough is enough; we will not take this any more. They are demanding that their leaders leave Kenya now and go home. Ethiopia is part of the problem in Somalia, they say.

On 23 January 1992, the Security Council adopted resolution 733 (1992) impos-ing an arms embargo on Somalia.
A panel of United Nations' experts was dispatched to investigate violations of the embargo. After traveling the entire world and interviewing hundreds of people, public and private, outside and inside Somalia, the Panel submitted its first report to the Security Council on 25 March 2003 (S/2003/223). It stated among other things:

"Ethiopia has played an overt military role in Somalia. Not only has Ethiopia been a major source of weapons for a number of Somali groups, Ethiopia has also invaded and occupied parts of Somalia. Ostensibly, and perhaps
justifiably, the first direct military involvement of Ethiopia in Somalia, in 1996 and 1997, was in response to the activities of al-Ittihad al-Islami, includ-ing terrorist attacks in Ethiopia. Ethiopia's incursions crushed al-Ittihad's mili-tary capacity. Since then, however, the Government has used the threat of al-Ittihad as an excuse for Ethiopian involvement in Somali internal affairs rather than for legitimate national security concerns.

The Report went on:

"Ethiopia's military presence in western Somalia is significant and Ethiopia continues to provide military assistance to various factions of the Somali Rec-onciliation and Restoration Council. One International observer who has vis-ited Baidoa saw ammunition boxes with Amharic writing on them in July 2002. Other international observers reported seeing and even meeting Ethiopian military officers."

Needless to say, the People of Somalia are truly upset and the fact is Ethiopia has been and still is a major factor of the problems in Somalia. It is the respon-sibility of the world community, especially the leaders and the people of Soma-lia to take a stand against the naked aggression of the Ethiopian government.