Somali-Issa Deal to Occupy Afar Territories a Recipe for Conflict

News Politics
Ethiopia's intention behind the unprovoked aggression and territorial expansion of the Issa-Somalis into the heartland Afar is deeply suspicious.
Ethiopia’s intention behind the unprovoked aggression and territorial expansion of the Issa-Somalis into the heartland Afar is deeply suspicious.

By Afar Diaspora Network (ADN),

THE Afar Diaspora Network (ADN) has called an urgent Extraordinary Meeting to discuss the implications of the recent agreement signed on 11 December 2014, between the Afar and Somali regions at Awash City of the Afar region legalizing the creation of three Special Self-Ruling Sub-Districts or Wards Status of Somali-Issa occupied Afar territories. After deliberating on this development thoroughly ADN passed the following resolution:

Afar Diaspora Network (ADN) representing all Afar Diaspora Organizations around the world condemns and rejects the agreement signed between the Afar and Somali Regions indorsed by the Ethiopian Federal Government which legalizes the occupation of three Afar territories namely, Adaytu, Unda Foou and Gadamaytu.

Afar Diaspora Network (ADN) condemns and rejects that the Afar puppet ruling group sign this agreement under the coercion of the TPLF/EPRDF federal authorities without any consultation with Afar regional parliament, cabinet, traditional Afar leaders or inhabitants of the Region in general. Calls on federal authorities to reverse immediately its unprecedented decision of creating Special Kebele autonomous entity because it is not part of the formal hierarchy of the politico-administrative division system of the country. Such entity is not found anywhere in the 9 regions (Kilils) of Ethiopia.

Reaffirms our determination to bring to justice the few Afar Regional leaders, including Ismael Ali Siro and his ruling clique of Afar Democratic Organization (ADE) which signed this unprecedented and illegitimate agreement.

Reiterates our demand that the Ethiopian Government not only demarcates the boundaries between the Afar and Somali Regional States, but additionally returns the Issa-Somalis occupying forces to the area demarcated by the Haile Selassie government in the 1940s at the Erer River, in order to ensure lasting security and durable peace among the two communities.

Affirming the Somali-Issas are not a national minority that is distinct from the Afars in the Afar-Somali region as they claim but an invading illegal force. The Somali-Issa residing in any part of the Afar region can live side by side in peace with Afars just like other non- Afars are living in urban centers of the Afar region. The Ethiopian federal authorities must guarantee their safety and security as any government worthy of its name is bound to do.

Condemns the active involvement of the Issa dominated government of Djibouti led by Ismail Omar Guelleh supporting the Issa forces initially to occupy Afar territories and later to secure legalization of the occupied areas. We would like to reiterate that the occupied areas of Adaytu, Unda Foou and Gadamaytu are not contested border areas as portrayed by these forces but are occupied areas located at the hurt of the Afar land.

Calls on Afars to expose the void nature of the Issa Diaspora of threatening the Afars with war; of threatening the Ethiopian government with guerrilla warfare in the vital and strategic Addis-Ababa coastal corridor.

Calls upon Djibouti Afars to warn Djibouti government officials of Issa nationality in Djibouti, that they too will endanger civic peace and togetherness of the two component ethnic groups in the Djibouti Republic itself, if they keep interfering in the Afar-Issa conflict in the strategic Addis-Ababa costal corridor.

Finally ADN warns the Ethiopian Federal government and the Afar regional government officials that bestowing special Self-Ruling Kebele Status on Somali-Issa Militia Occupied Afar Territories will never secure peace but will be a recipe for an ending conflict in the region and between the two communities in general.

Done in Uppsala, Sweden
Afar Diaspora Network
Executive Committee