November 1st: A day of sorrow; a day of solidarity; a day of renewed commitment
Ethiopians all over the world are planning to join hands to commemorate the first anniversary of the November 1 2005 mass murder and imprisonment. This is one of the darkest days in the history of the Ethiopian People. We recall the sequence of events that dragged the people of Ethiopia into the abyss.
The government of Meles Zenawi called a general election on May 15 2005 with absolute certainty that it will win. It never expected to lose to the opposition. Contrary to the expectation of the incumbent and its foreign backers the opposition won. The Party of Meles Zenawi was not prepared to leave office. It put the civilian and military bureaucracy at its disposal on an overdrive and began conducting massive electoral fraud. The people of Ethiopia and the leaders of opposition parties stood firm and demanded that the votes be counted. Meles Zenawi arrogantly spurned all civil and peaceful means of solving the electoral dispute. The choice that the government of Meles Zenawi left to the Ethiopian people was to live under slavery.
The people of Ethiopia whose yearning for freedom has been awakened by the visionary leaders of the opposition refused. A protest against vote rigging engulfed the whole country. Meles Zenawi responded with extreme violence. In one single evil stroke the hopes and aspiration of the Ethiopian people for a free and prosperous life was dashed. On November 1 2005 hundreds were murdered in cold blood. Tens of thousands were rounded like cattle and were kept in inhuman condition in concentration camps all over the country. Man’s inhumanity against his keens darkened the days. A child playing in the garden, a wife begging mercy for husband, a mother of seven who gave shelter to a terrified teenager were shot in cold blood and murdered.
November 1st 2005 became the culmination for the most unbelievable human and democratic rights abuse that begun in June 2005 as a warning shot. As evinced by the events that followed since then this has now become the norm. The mask of the democrat that Meles Zenawi has put for the sake of pleasing its foreign masters in the west was cast aside and he appeared in his true self, fresh blood of innocent children dripping from his gnashing teeth. It was the signal that announced the end of the nascent political pluralism, freedom of the press, freedom of expression and the end of the fledgling independent civic institutions. On the morrow of November 1, leaders of the main opposition party- CUDP, journalists that paid huge price to protect the fledgling free press, advocates of civic rights and representative of civic organization ended up in jail accused of trumped up charges of genocide and treason. A kangaroo court has been set up to conduct a show case trial and it has been going on for months without an end in sight.
Despite the massive repression, the struggle for freedom and democracy in Ethiopia
has not died. Brave men and women write inspiring letters and book of freedom and love and smuggle them out through the incredibly tight security of the prison regime. The youth print and distribute hundreds of thousands of flyers demanding the release of their leaders from jail and in the process they pay the ultimate sacrifice in Meles Zenawi’s torture chamber. Senior diplomats, judges, army officers, journalist and other professionals that used to work for the government are abandoning their posts and fleeing into exile.
As part of our share of the struggle let us all Ethiopians in the Diaspora join hands to remember the murdered and those who are languishing in prison. Let us unequivocally tell Meles Zenawi that no amount of repression will stop the dawning of freedom in Ethiopia. Lets us inform the jailed political leaders, journalists and the thousands of prisoners of conscience in Meles Zenawi’s prison that we shall not rest until they are freed and until Ethiopia is free from the despotic rule the reigning tyrant.
Look at the detail below and see if there is any activity that will take place on or around November 1st 2006 in your area. If there is not any, please take the initiative and organize a similar commemoration event.
Place: 10 Downing St, Whitehall, London
Date/Time: Oct 30, 4:00 PM to Nov. 01, 8:00 PM
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7168 9893
Mobile: +44 (0) 7946 644 831
Place: Metro Schumman
Look out for details
Date: Nov. 08
Place: Helvetiaplatz, USA Embassy, Bern
Date/Time: Nov. 01, 1.00 PM
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com
Tel: 078 8415603, or 078 707 9 207, or 079 207 9 207 (mobile)
Place: In front of USA Embassy, Stockholm
Date/Time: Nov 01, 2:30 PM
Tel. +46762642705 or +46737223694
Place: Oslo Central Train Station, Jernbanetorget
Date/Time: Nov. 01, 12:00 PM
Email: Shimelea@hotmail.com or Ksdonorway@yahoo.com
Tel: 004793623776 (mobile)
Place: Berlin Zoo
Date/Time: Nov 01, 6:30 PM
Date/Time: Nov 01, 4.00 PM
Place: Karlplatz Stachus
Date/Time: Nov.01, 5:30 PM
Place: Boltzmanngasse 16, 1090 Vienna
Date/Time: Nov. 03, 03:00 PM
Tel: 0043 69911 06, 0043 65091 38 064 (mobile)
Place: Outside the Union Building
Date/Time: Nov. 01, 11.00 AM-1.00 PM
Tel: 27723498980, 27723115306, 27723992349, 27832385395
Place: 700 Hamilton St., CBS TV, (Hamilton&Georgia)
Date/Time: Nov 1, 6.00 PM
Tel: 604-318-0915, or 604-729-0448
Place: City Hall, Municipal Complex, 800 Macleod Trail SE
Date/Time: Nov. 01, 12 PM
Tel: 403-698-1666, 403-263-8597, or 403-618-5036
Place: Hyde Park, St., James Railway Station
Date/Time: Nov1, 10:00AM
Tel: 61-(0)412169402, 61-(0)422708457, 61-(0)401683746
Place: Kings Park, Botanic Garden
Date/Time: Nov 1, 7:00PM Perth Time
Place: Corner of Lonsdale & William Street, Melbourne City Centre
Date/Time: Nov1, 8:30AM
Tel: 61-(0)431260231, 61-(0)421131529
Place: King George Square, Adelaide St.
Date/Time: Nov 1, 10:00AM