Horn citizens: “This conflict dashes our hopes for the region”

An appeal for peace by Horn of Africa citizens.

11 November 2020

We, the undersigned citizens of countries of the Horn of Africa, condemn in the strongest possible terms the outbreak and escalation of open warfare in Ethiopia. We are saddened by the attendant losses of life, property, infrastructure and opportunities. We deplore in equally strong terms further stoking of the conflict.

Wars neither have predetermined end dates nor are they guaranteed to stay within fixed territorial boundaries. Unless immediately halted, the ongoing Ethiopian civil war has all the trappings of a drawn-out conflict with adverse effects on the rest of the Horn of Africa region and the African continent at large. This conflict will not have winners; the only winners in war are those who are wise and courageous enough to avoid it.

At a time when we, as citizens of the region, were looking forward to the expansion and consolidation of the changes that Prime Minister Abiy’s rise to power ushered, this conflict dashes our hopes for the region and puts in direct, grave danger the lives and livelihoods of many Ethiopians. Given the significance of Ethiopia in the region and continent, and the strong ties that bind the countries of the region to each other, Ethiopia’s peace and stability becomes of paramount concern to the countries and citizens of the region. For this reason:

  • We call on all the concerned Ethiopian actors to immediately cease fire and deescalate the situation.
  • We call on the Eritrean government to desist from any rhetoric or actions that may contribute to further inflame the conflict.
  • We call on Ethiopia’s other neighbors (Sudan, South Sudan, Kenya, Somalia/Somaliland and Djibouti) to exert their utmost diplomatic, political, and other resources to help the warring Ethiopian sides defuse the conflict and help attend to the consequent humanitarian needs.
  • We appeal to IGAD, the AU and the UN to impress upon the two parties the need for a peaceful resolution and to use their good offices to help them achieve it.
  • We appeal to Archbishop Desmond Tutu, H.E. Thabo Mbeki, H.E. Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, E. Olusegun Obasanjo, H.E. Lakhdar Brahimi, H.E. Graça Machel and other notable African leaders and elders to leverage their considerable leadership toward the resolution of the ongoing tragic conflict.
  • We appeal to all Ethiopians, citizens of the Horn of Africa and all Africans and peace-loving people of the world to say “no to war” in unison and work for peace in the volatile region.
  • We call on all conventional and social media outlets, activists from Ethiopia and the region, and analysts to be mindful of incendiary tone and substance in their programming, to refrain from further inflaming the situation, and to actively promote the peaceful resolution of this conflict and its root causes.
  1. Abraham T. Zere, Journalist, USA
  2. Alemayehu Weldemariam, Mekelle University, Ethiopia
  3. Almaz Zerai, Network of Eritrean Women, Germany
  4. Araya Debessay, University of Delaware, USA
  5. Asia Abdulkadir, Independent Consultant, Kenya
  6. Asmahan Ali Nouman, Network of Eritrean Women, UK
  7. Assefaw Tekeste, Touro University, California, USA
  8. Awet T. Weldemichael, Queen’s University, Canada
  9. Ayantu Tibeso, University of California Los Angeles, USA
  10. Bettina Ng’weno, University of California, Davis, USA
  11. Colin Lasu, Central State University, USA
  12. Fatuma N Bedhaso, Oromo Human Rights Advocate, USA
  13. Jama Musse Jama, Hargeysa Cultural Center, Somaliland
  14. James Murua, Journalist, Kenya
  15. Jok Madut Jok, Syracuse University, USA
  16. Helen Kidan, Network of Eritrean Women, UK
  17. Husam Osman Mahjoub, Sudan Bukra TV Channel, USA
  18. Khedijah Ali Mohammed Nur, Network of Eritrean Women, UK
  19. Magdi el-Gizouli, University of Zurich, Switzerland
  20. Mastewal Taddese Terefe, Lawyer, USA
  21. Mebrak Tareke, TiMS Creative, USA/Mexico
  22. Meron Estefanos, Eritrean Initiative on Refugee Rights, Sweden
  23. Mohamed Kheir Omer, Writer, Norway
  24. Nadifa Mohamed, Writer, UK
  25. Nanjala Nyabola, Writer, Kenya
  26. Nasra Kassem, Network of Eritrean Women, UK
  27. Niat Hailemariam, Network of Eritrean Women, UK
  28. Paulos Tesfagioergis, Constitutional Lawyer, Canada
  29. Phoebe Musandu, USA
  30. Rashid Abdi, Horn of Africa Analyst, Kenya
  31. Sabine Mohamed, University of Heidelberg & Max Planck Institute, Germany
  32. Safia Aidid, University of Toronto, Canada
  33. Safia Abukar Farole, Portland State University, USA
  34. Saleh “Gadi” Johar, Publisher,, USA
  35. Saleh Younis, Editor, Eritrea Digest, USA
  36. Sarah Ogbay, Network of Eritrean Women, UK
  37. Sulaiman Addonia, Writer, Belgium
  38. Tereza Kidane, Network of Eritrean Women, USA
  39. Tirsit Yetbarek Seme, Hargeysa Cultural Center, Somaliland
  40. Yohannes T. Berhe, Editor, Snitna, UK
  41. Yvonne Adhiambo Owuor, Author, Kenya
  42. Vanessa Tsehaye, One Day Seyoum, UK
  43. Zahra Suleiman, Network of Eritrean Women, UK
  44. Zecharias Zelalem, Journalist, Canada

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  • Let us learn the language, the thinking, and acting of PEACE from scratch?

    This article is about PEACE unless you want to share PEACE ideas don’t write.

  • I don’t buy much of the ToL hardliner’s outfit nor intrested the failed TPLF’s gang agendas, but that statement is a fact I presume. The good thing about this is it is the just begging of the end to unravel the Ethiopian state as we know and it’s not necessarily bad thing for the various nations and natioanlities, which Amhara chauvenisti elites are craving
    to reconfigurate and deprive again and again in the name of the so-called
    Ethiopian empire, an imagainaryy unitary and strong nation that never existed.. I won’t happen in the future either.

  • I don’t see why restoring law and order in the restive region of Ethiopia should be considered as war between two nations or a conflict that can spread to other countries in the wider HOA. If anything, left unchecked identity politics which TPLF brought to the scene to divide and concur, is the dangerous ideology that has the potential to plunge the region in to never ending conflict.

    TPLF is an organized crime group which captured the state power for close to three decades and used it to promote its narrow interest by paying known foreign conflict vultures without any regard to humanity and the rule of law. I kind of find it puzzling why the outcry now when in fact every attempt to extend the olive branch by the Ethiopian Government has persistently been refused by TPLF.

    All those who are one way or another connected to this fascist group and it doesn’t surprise me if they cry even louder for their paycheck, which is soaked with blood, is soon to be drying. Even if the Abiy administration capitulates, the crime being perpetrated and sponsored by TPLF has now become international war crime and crime against humanity that is to be prosecuted at the international arena.

  • As the latest string of demonstrations in support of the national army show, a large number of Ethiopians support Abiy’s action to stop those ethnic instigators who have been using politics for their own agenda. Once politics and ethnicity are put in their separate places, then we can move forward.

    Resisting ethnic federalism does not mean going back to unitary rule as most claim. Almost everyone supports federalism in the 21st century. The ideal of state, which has been refined after multiple European revolutions, is actually a progressive idea. Taking an ethnic group and giving it the right of manipulating the state is a way back; particularly in diverse places like Ethiopia.

  • Good luck for the rational appeal and nobrl effort but rest assured, there won be a viable peace , tranquility and other socio-politico and economic progress in the Horn Africa region as long as Habesha warmongers are around and beat nihilistic wat drums. They either would fight against each other or against the neighboring states and people. It has been case over two centuries and beyond.

  • Good luck for rational appeal nd effort tbut rest assured, there won be a viable peace , tranquility and other socio-politico and economic progress in the Horn Africa region as long as Habesha warmongers around and beat nihilistic wat drums. They either would fight against each other or against the neighboring states and prople. It has been case over two centuries and beyond.

  • I tire of arguing for multinational federalism, maybe Ethiopia is better fragmented into 10 or 12 nations. At every turn having the international crisis group arguing against democracy or human rights until it’s too late and then arguing for better authoritarianism has got to be the height of intellectual hubris.

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