Ethiopia Says U.K. Review of Aid Is Based on Fabricated Claims
By William Davison
A British court’s decision to allow a judicial review of aid given to Ethiopia is based on “fabrications” about a resettlement program propagated by people outside the country, the Horn of Africa nation’s Foreign Ministry said.
The High Court in London on July 14 said a review could be conducted into whether the U.K.’s aid agency is adequately monitoring the human-rights record of Ethiopia’s government. The ruling came after an Ethiopian citizen said his government had used aid to implement a resettlement program in the western Gambella region under which he suffered abuses. The program forcibly moved tens of thousands of people and involved “serious human rights violations,” according to Human Rights Watch. The U.K.’s development agency said it didn’t fund the program.
Ethiopia is enacting a five-year economic growth plan in a bid to reduce poverty and develop industries beyond agriculture, which accounts for 80 percent of employment, according to the United Nations.
Ethiopia’s Foreign Ministry said the Gambella resettlements were voluntary and successfully achieved their goal of improving public services in sparsely populated areas.
“One reason for these distorted views clearly lies in the failure to understand the objectives of the resettlement program,” it said in a statement e-mailed by Ethiopia’s Embassy in the U.K. yesterday. “This has been further compounded by what can only be described as shoddy analysis of the programs on the basis of flimsy, politically motivated or even non-existent evidence.”
Ethiopian runners: 3 found, but question of asylum still unanswered
Police found three of the four missing Ethiopian athletes in Beaverton on Monday afternoon, saying they're safe and staying with acquaintances. A fourth remained missing.
The University of Oregon Police Department said police had found Amanuel Abebe Atibeha, a 17-year-old boy, and Dureti Edao and Meaza Kebede, two 18-year-old women.
Zeyituna Mohammed, 18, remained missing, but she was not believed to be in danger, department spokesman Kelly McIver said in an email. "We need to have positive confirmation of her safety in order to clear the missing-persons case," he said.
2015 AFCON: Ethiopia head to Brazil for preparations
Source: Star Africa
Ethiopia’s national team will be heading to Brazil to begin the preparation camp before the 2015 Orange Africa Cup of Nations’ Group stage qualifiers kick off.
The 2013 CAN revelation will be hoping to continue their success in Morocco next year. However, they must first of all make it to the tournament as they are grouped alongside Algeria, Mali and the winner between Benin and Malawi in the Group stage qualifiers.
The Ethiopian Football Federation President, Junedin Basha, said on Tuesday that the team will first have an International friendly against Angola on August 3, before flying to Brazil for a camp.
“Besides the training camp, we shall also have some friendly games in Brazil to shape the team,” added the Ethiopia FA President.
Ethiopia, other African governments make their pitch in Houston
African leaders in the U.S. to discuss energy needs
By Chris Tomlinson
African officials will be in Houston Tuesday to tour American energy infrastructure and to pitch for investments in their power sectors.
The energy ministers from Kenya, Mozambique and Tanzania will meet Tuesday with U.S. Trade and Development Agency Director Leocadia I. Zak and Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz, as well as talk to officials from U.S. energy companies, the agency said.
Ethiopian President Mulatu Teshome will also host the 2014 U.S. - Ethiopia Investment Summit at the Houstonian Club on Wednesday.
American companies have lagged behind their global competitors in taking advantage of the enormous economic growth and potential for big returns on the continent. I've written about the need for American investors to reconsider their preconceived notions about Africa. Now there's a chance of Houston executives to hear the pitch firsthand.
Ethiopia needs to do better
The Houston Chronicle Editorial
As they ready for two days of wheeling and dealing with a high-ranking Ethiopian delegation at a local hotel, Houston business and elected leaders today need to look beyond a foreign market opportunity and first ask hard questions about Ethiopia's recent crackdown on nine journalists, as well as the country's unsuccessful move this spring to make homosexuality a "non-pardonable" crime.
Ethiopia is the second largest jailer of journalists in Africa, behind its neighbor on the Horn, Eritrea. This month it upped the tally by formally indicting nine editors, freelancers and bloggers with trumped up charges of inciting violence and terrorism. The world's preeminent advocacy organization for journalists and press freedom, the Committee to Protect Journalists, called the government's action a move to "suppress political dissent and intimidate journalists." This group of nine and other award-winning writers in Ethiopian prisons are young professionals using social media to level basic criticism at the government, according to published reports.
CPJ is not alone in its outrage. Secretary of State John Kerry recently urged the Ethiopian government to quit using anti-terrorism laws as a way to "curb the free exchange of ideas."
Ethiopia received $580 million in U.S. foreign aid in 2012. No matter what good it does with that money - and the government has improved many facets of the infrastructure - Ethiopia's reputation is one that denies civil liberties to its people and is questionable at best in any ranking on human rights. This is a self-proclaimed democratic government and it should be held to a higher standard than places like China and Saudi Arabia.
We agree with CPJ's admonishment of the government of second-year Ethiopian prime minister Hailemariam Desalegn and president Mulatu Teshome, who leads the trade mission here before traveling to Washington for high-level meetings. We also echo Kerry's call for the Ethiopian government to give the journalists a fair and open trial "free of political influence." The compassionate move, of course, would be to release the journalists until they have their day in court.
Capitalism is a force that should encourage our partners to be better than they are today. That has to be part of the message that Teshome hears from Mayor Annise Parker and Greater Houston Partnership business leaders like summit co-sponsors Chevron, Marathon and others.
The Zone 9 journalists, as they are called in Ethiopia, need our support more than we need the sales opportunity.
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