ADDIS ABABA Ethiopia (Xinhua) --
The U.S. embassy in Ethiopia in a statement Tuesday warned
Ethiopian students wanting to travel to the United States of the
dangers of visa fraud.
The Embassy didn’t
specify the reasons for the notice, but it comes months after
another statement dismissing speculation that visa rules for
Ethiopians will be tightened.
Though Ethiopia was
not one of the seven countries placed under the executive travel
ban of the administration of U.S. President Donald trump last
January, the ban nevertheless caused concern.
Every year thousands
of Ethiopians travel to the United States for resettlement,
education or family visits.
Although there are
no known statistics of number of Ethiopians and people of
Ethiopian Origin living in the United States, the Ministry of
Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia estimates it be in upwards of half a
bordering by Sudan and Somalia which were put on the travel ban
and refugees from both countries using the U.S. embassy in
Ethiopia for visa applications Ethiopian visa applicants feared
they would be unwittingly included in the ban.
During the January
executive travel ban several dozen people mainly from Somalia,
Sudan and Yemen which use Ethiopia as a transit were temporarily
stranded at the Addis Ababa Bole International Airport.
The travel ban first
issued in late January was suspended by a judge, although there
was a second failed effort to reinstate the ban on six of the
seven countries again blocked in the courts. With the suspension
of the travel ban, the stranded passengers were able to leave
the airport for their final destinations.
At least 669 die in
Ethiopia’s 2016 unrest: commission
ADDIS ABABA Ethiopia (Xinhua) --
A total of 669 people, most of them civilians,
died in political unrest in parts of the three most populous
regions of Ethiopia in 2016, according to a report by a
mandated Ethiopian human Rights Commission (EHRC) in a report
presented by its head Dr. Adisu Gebregzbaher to the Ethiopian
parliament on April 18 says, the biggest number of deaths
occurred in Ethiopia’s largest state Oromiya, with the deaths of
462 civilians and 33 security forces.
Deadly protests by
Oromos, Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group making about 35 percent
of Ethiopia’s estimated 100 million population, erupted in
November 2015 and continued until late 2016.
as a protest against the expansion of the capital city Addis
Ababa into Oromo villages, the protest soon turned into
complaints against what many Oromos perceive as political and
The Oromo protests
were then joined in June by Ethiopia’s second largest ethnic
group, the Amhara’s, at around 28 percent of the population,
complaining about territorial redistricting of “historic” Amhara
land to neighboring Tigray region 25 years ago. The EHRC report
says 110 civilians and 30 security forces died in the Amhara
Many Amharas also
complain about what they call the political and economic
dominance of the Tigray ethnic group, who makes up around 6
percent of Ethiopia’s population.
focus on the unrest in the country’s third most populous region
southern regional state was focused on a small area, Gedeo zone,
where ethnic Gedeo’s in October 2016 attacked the properties of
migrants in a dispute about ownership of land and business. The
commission says 33 people died in the unrest.
EHRC in its finding
stated the security forces largely gave a proportionate response
to the unrest although it single out several occasions where it
said excessive force was used.
particularly in Amhara and Oromiya regions, were dubbed by
analysts as the worst the ruling party Ethiopian People’s
Revolutionary Democratic Force (EPRDF) had faced since it came
to power in 1991.
After a clash
between congregants and security forces led to a deadly stampede
at an Oromo religious festival in October 2016, the Ethiopian
government declared a six months martial law.
decree, which since then has been renewed for another four
months, seemed to have calmed the situation in the country
although tensions persist.