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Oromo-Somali Solidarity Forum Press Release

oromo somali
Date: 16th of March, 2017
Ref: OSSF/01/17

For immediate release

(PDF) Since November 2016, i.e., for the last five months, the murderous Liyu Police forces, commanded by the President of the Somali Regional State, have been undertaking border raids and attacks against civilians in the Oromia region, in the process killing and displacing many people. The attack is launched on five Oromia zones and 14 districts bordering the Somali region. At least 200 civilians have been killed and many others injured in the attacks according to reports. These senseless attacks were ordered by the TPLF as part of its strategy to weaken the popular uprising underway in Oromia against the minority ruling clique. TPLF has been trying to portray the conflict it maneuvered between the brotherly Somali and Oromo peoples as a dispute between the two regions over the ownership of border towns and localities, a dispute that has been settled through public referenda in 2005/6. The two neighboring ethnic groups have co-existed peacefully for centuries and have a culture of resolving disputes through established traditional conflict resolution mechanisms. Without the sinister hands of the TPLF, this conflict would not have even started. TPLF is hiding in plain sight and should understand that such mischief will not absolve it from the crimes it continues to commit against both the Oromo and Somali people.

The atrocities committed by the Liyu Police did not start with defenseless Oromos. These merchants of death and destruction have been terrorizing their own Somali people for the last ten years at the behest of their TPLF masters. They have committed numerous grave human right violations inside the Somali region and even as far beyond as Somalia with gruesome executions, rape, and burning of villages being their distinctive trademarks.

We at the Oromo-Somali Solidarity Forum hereby condemn this TPLF-engineered reckless conflict which led to the bloodshed of our brotherly peoples. We urge the brotherly Somali and Oromo peoples to stand in solidarity and deny the TPLF the pleasure of achieving the division and animosity it aspires to sow between our people. The ongoing conflict is not a war between Oromos and Somalis. It is a proxy war orchestrated by the TPLF against Oromos through the Liyu Police which is an auxiliary instrument of repression by the desperate minority regime. United, we will overcome TPLF’s 26 years of oppression and mayhem.

Victory to the oppressed Oromo and Somali people!

With profound regards!
Oromo-Somali Solidarity Forum

Addressed to: All Ethiopians, Oromos, Somalis and the international press

Representative signatories:

 Geresu Tufa
 Mohamed Hassan
 Najat Hamza
 Nagessa Oddo Dube
 Jemal-Dirie Kalif
 Jawar Mohammed
 Abdullahi Hussein
 Dahabe M. Abdella
 Tibebu Sime
 Hadi Luqman
 Girma Gutema
 Solomon Ungashe
 Tsegaye Ararsa
 Gadissa Abrahim
 Eda’o Dawano
 Latu Bushan
 Aman Maldewo
 Endiris Negewo


  1. There are things that are manifesting themselves by coming out in the open in various harmful ways. Old conflicts are flaring up again and again. Hundreds of thousands and possibly in their millions have left places of their birth seeking and chasing peace and opportunity somewhere else. I can talk about it coming from the lot that had befallen my own Itu clan on my mother’s side. The conflicts and tribal clashes have been around for centuries but somehow elders of those times used to find compromising ways to easy up tensions and conflicts. Such conflicts were not provoked or promoted by the late emperor or even that demon Mengistu. The tribal conflicts used to be mainly between some of the Afar and clans from the Issa tribe. My mother’s clan used to be left alone by both warring tribes because we were the grain producers as well as cattle herders. I remember the Afar clans mainly the Asahi-Mara(Asay-Mara) clan members coming to our village picking up sorghum and other edible farm products in exchange for what my clan wanted. One of my aunties used to travel to where the Issas dwell to sell these same edible products in exchange for some foreign manufactured goods such as fabrics and cosmetics. That was in the 1940’s and 50’s even 1960’s. But beginning the mid to late 1970’s my mother’s clan began to be ruthlessly attacked by cattle rustlers who were by then armed with high efficiency automatic weapons they picked from Somalia and Djibouti. Now some of those places that used to be my mother’s Itu clan domiciles are no more. Many localities that used to be settlements of Afar clans are no more. When I look at the Google Map now I see places that I know very well from growing up in the area in the 1940’s and 50’s are now given names belonging to tribes who were not there even in the vicinity. I will give you one example. The place is a railway station Afdem. It used to be populated mainly by our Afar brothers and sisters. That place is known to the Afars and my own Oromo tribe as Awware. There used to be an elementary school the late Emperor opened right after he returned from exile. I remember many students attending that school used to be from the Afar tribe because they are the majority of town’s populations including the area leading all the way to Gowane. I personally know some of those students who had become productive bureaucrats even in neighboring Djibouti. Some of them turned out to be very successful merchants in Addis(Finfine). I still keep in touch with 2 or 3 of them who now reside in Europe. I fully understand and expect that demographics is bound to change anywhere. I understand that. That was all possible until now. The prevailing modus operandi now seems to be such that a certain tribe or ethnic group would be the sole owner and that is it. The problem stems for this psyche inherent in the nomadic way of life. That psyche is the contempt for a settled way of life. Contempt usually accompanies violence. The latest news I am getting from my merchandising relatives is that once again conflicts have flared up. Hundreds have been victimized, mostly innocent ones I may add. I have called for level headed people to prevail so many times before because I know there was a potential for such destructive and deadly conflicts. I had lived in it. I had seen it. The village I once running around playing when I was a very young boy is wiped out of its true colors. If I ever had the chance to go back to the old country, there will be no ‘Trip to Bountiful’ like Geraldine Page had for me. All I can do now is just look at the Google Map and reminisce. What I think the solution to prevent current conflict from going out of hand is to designate the entire area along the railway line as a neutral and special economic zone. During the late Emperor time it was just as such even though it was not declared as such. Almost at every railway station, the population was comprised of residents of many ethnic backgrounds. I don’t remember any, not one, inter-ethnic conflicts in anyone of those stations. It is very depressing for me to hear inter-ethnic deadly conflicts are the norm now. I feel totally helpless. That is why I seek refuge in The Lord The Almighty Our Creator and pray. We should all go to places of our worship and pray daily. We should all pray that Our Creator make those level heads prevail over the evil minded ones. Let’s Pray!!!!

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