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11 March 2022
We, Ethiopians and citizens of European countries, members of the Defend Ethiopia Task Force in Europe (DETF-EU) organized in Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom release the following statement regarding the bill H.R. 6600 introduced to the House of Representatives of the United States, regrettably passing the US Foreign Affairs committee without any deliberation, Hearing or Constituent inputs.
We believe that the Ethiopian context is completely misunderstood by the legislators and that no matter how well intentioned their motives may be, this bill is in fact counterproductive. It will not make a positive contribution to either the peacemaking process in Ethiopia or the long term resolution of the crisis in Ethiopia. In fact by its very nature it does not appear to be motivated to actually contribute to a resolution to the crisis. The provisions of the bill will very likely impair further the relationship between the government and people of the United States, and Ethiopia and in doing so, will create further division between the two countries and not help in restoring a friendly relationship.
We regret that the biased resolution has ignored the root cause of the conflict as DETF-EU explained in previous letters. We also regret that it has ignored the positive steps taken by the Ethiopian government to find a pathway to a lasting peace through a national reconciliation and dialogue. We further regret the political cover and sympathy demonstrated by the United States’ Administration to the Tigray People Liberation Front (TPLF) over the past years which has emboldened the TPLF to continue its incursions in neighboring regions of Afar and Amhara committing atrocities including widespread rape, summary killings, and looting.
We believe the bill will add to tension and will harm the people of Ethiopia as well as the security interests of the United States and its European allies and will not contribute to a lasting peace.
In support of the statement issued by Ethiopian Americans, we appeal to the American people to lobby their representative in Congress and urge them not to support H.R. 6600 and call once again on US government officials in Europe to reconsider their position on the current crisis in Ethiopia.
The Defend Ethiopia Task Force in Europe Steering Group organized in Belgium, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Norway, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom
- Dagmawi Yimer – Italy
- Elias Atlabachew – France
- Getahun Assefa – Germany
- Kassahun Gedlu – Norway
- Kitaw Yayehyirad – Switzerland
- Mahlet Ayele – The Netherlands
- Rahel Dalton – Ireland
- Sirage Detang – Sweden
- Tarekegne Asnake – Spain
- Teshale Mihretu – Czech Republic
- Zelalem Getahun – United Kingdom
- Zerihun Assefa – Belgium
Sent to: US State Department, US Embassies in Europe
Forwarded to: EU Commissionners and Parlamentarians and more