ONLF Press Release: Ogaden Somali tortured to death in Puntland.

November 6, 2009

ONLF: Ogaden Somali tortured to death in Puntland

Ogaden National Liberation Front Press Release

The Puntland Administration detained five Ogaden Somali civilians in Bassaso, who were travelling from Yemen to Ogaden on 18th October 2009.

Both the Puntland militia and Ethiopian Security extensively tortured the detainees and then one of the detainees was abducted and taken to a prison in Harar.

On November 2 2009, one of the prisoners in Bossaso died of internal wounds sustained during the extensive torture subjected to him.

This ill will towards Ogaden Somali people has being going on for a while in Puntland. On different occasions, the Puntland Administration had put in harm’s way civilians as ONLF members in violation of international law and customary laws among the Somali people. The Ogaden Somali people have

a right to wage a legitimate struggle to attain their rights from the Ethiopian regime, which is marginalizing and committing war crimes against them. Such cowardly acts by the likes of the Puntland administration will not deter the will of the Ogaden Somalis to attain their self-determinations and basic Human Rights.

The Ogaden National Liberation Front and the Ogaden Somali people on those occasions had opted for restrain and dialogue in order to convince Puntland to act in a civilized manner and respect the right of the Ogaden people. Unfortunately, the Puntland Administration instead of mending its wayward ways, it further escalated its crimes by not only killing and torturing Ogaden civilians but publicly declaring its ill intentions towards the Ogaden Somalis.

Henceforth the Ogaden National Liberation Front will take all measures necessary to protect the lives and interests of the Ogaden Somali people while the Puntland Administration will be responsible for any dire consequences of its criminal acts.

The Ogaden National Liberation FrontOgaden Flag

Ethiopian Official Says Somali Militias Use Ethiopia to Attack Rebels

August 22, 2009

Ethiopia has confirmed that pro-government militias from neighboring Somalia are using Ethiopian territory as a base to launch attacks on rebel forces. An Ethiopian spokesman lashed out at Horn of Africa rival Eritrea for its role in the Somalia conflict.

Spokesman Bereket Simon says Ethiopia has not and will not stop its military support to Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government, or TFG, in its fight against a foreign-backed insurgency.

Bereket told reporters, pro-government Somali militias have permission to use Ethiopia as a base of operations in attacking al-Shabab rebels, who control large sections of southern Somalia.

“When the forces of the TFG attack al-Shabab and score victories, we don’t care from which geographical positions they start the attack,” he said. “But I assure you this is a Somali operation.”

Bereket categorically denied persistent reports that Ethiopian troops are actively engaged in Somalia’s civil war.

Ethiopia’s army entered Somalia in 2006 to drive out an al-Shabab backed administration in Mogadishu, but encountered stiff opposition and withdrew earlier this year.

Bereket says Ethiopia’s military support mostly involves training forces loyal to the U.N.-backed transitional government.

“We have been training, not only now, even when we had been in Somalia, we have been training forces of the TFG, and we always train and we will continue to train forces of the TFG because we believe these are forces of peace and stability in Somalia,” he continued.

Bereket had harsh words for Ethiopia’s Horn of Africa rival Eritrea, which the United States accuses of backing al-Shabab in Somalia. Eritrea denies the charge, but Bereket described Eritrea as a regional troublemaker.

“The reality is that Eritrea currently is creating havoc around the Horn. We all know this country is supplying arms to al-Shabab,” he said. “We all know this country is bent on weakening and destroying the TFG, which is the legitimate government recognized by the United Nations.”

Bereket also expressed satisfaction with this week’s verdict of an international commission settling claims arising from the war Ethiopia and Eritrea fought from 1998 to 2000. Ethiopia had asked for $14 billion in reparations, Eritrea had asked for $6 billion. The ruling handed down in The Hague awarded Ethiopia $174 million, and Eritrea roughly $164 million.

In a statement, the commission said it was aware the awards were only a small fraction of what each side had demanded of the other. But the commissioners noted what they called ‘the harsh fact that these countries are among the poorest on earth, and that the full claims would have been impossible for either side to pay.

Eritrea earlier said it would abide by the commission’s decision.

The awards were the result of a complex arbitration that was part of a peace agreement that ended the conflict. An estimated 80,000 people died in the fighting, many in World War I-style trench warfare.

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August 22, 2009

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