Government Signals ‘Zero Tolerance’ for Armed Movement

Addis Ababa October 10/2018 Appreciating peaceful engagement to realize democracy in Ethiopia, the government said it will no more tolerate any armed group movement in the country.

Ethiopian government signaled for the first time on Wednesday it will take necessary measure for any armed refraction against peaceful engagement in the country.

The Government Communication Affairs Office (GCAO) disclosed “There is no way that two armed forces can co-exist in a country, and only a government chosen by the people can led the country in a peaceful way.”

In his briefing for journalists, State Minister Kassahun Gonfe said the stance of Oromo Libration Front (OLF) concerning disarmament is totally unacceptable.

In a media briefing OLF gave through its Chairman Dawud Ibsa, saying ‘there was no agreement between the government and the front on disarmament”, was baseless as the front has agreed to return home and stop armed struggle but work on a democratic and peaceful engagement, he said.

He noted that the government has called upon all political parties located in the country and returned home to end disruptive politics in Ethiopia.

In this regard, several political parties labeled as terrorist including OLF have returned home pledging to continue to engage in a peaceful and democratic struggle without resorting to armed struggle.

He said that OLF has discussed and reached an agreement with the President, Prime Minister, the Foreign Affairs Minister and the President of Oromia Regional State to disarm its forces.

“They have held discussions with our officials on disarmament, that is why, the government has been giving professional training for around 1300 OLF’s disarmed force here in Ethiopia so that they can lead a peaceful life,” he said.

He further elaborated that the government has also welcomed the front’s forces by providing a safe inlet through Zalambessa, a border post between Ethiopia and Eritrea to show its commitment to upscale democracy and rule of law in the country.

Kassahun underscored that “The government is waiting for a prompt response from the front; otherwise, there is no situation that it will tolerate this, and will take the necessary actions to ensure the peaceful livelihood in the country.”

It is to be recalled that the Oromo Libration Front has disclosed that it has returned to work peacefully with the government to sustain the change.

“OLF returned to make peaceful struggle, we are able to return home because of the people who were struggling to realize peaceful and democratic political activities in the country,” said the Chairman Dawud Ibsa on the welcoming ceremony held in Addis Ababa after two decades of exile.

The Chairman was quoted as saying, “we are returning to go forward in peaceful way, and we would work with political parties situated in Ethiopia, so our aim is to realize the rule of law and democratic right and to ensure the benefit of the people through peaceful way.”

In a press conference the Chairman recently gave said that “there is no agreement between the party and the government on issue of disarmament.”