(By WS Asfaw, 15 December 2020) –
After 1949, the Geneva Conventions of Nurnberg and Tokyo trails come up with comprehensive and enforceable definitions of War Crimes.
We strongly believe that Ethiopia’s illegal government (it is unelected according to the Ethiopian Constitution should have held an election within five years of its remit). It has created excuses to postpone the election twice. We have no trust and no interest after it acted the way it dealt with the chronic political problem. The Abiy Government conspired with foreign forces, namely, Isaias Afework of Eritrea, UAE, and Amhara Regional government, to use a military solution on November 4, 2020. We strongly believe that bolting the doors from every direction and making sure that Tigray becomes inaccessible to the international media, wage a scorched earth policy in bringing Tigray as they boasted, “will take it back to stone age era.”
The Abiy government, with its allies (President Afeworki, UAE, Amhara Special Forces, and Militias), have perpetrated heinous crimes, and not to be incriminated, they are cover their crimes. It shows that these were deliberate and well prepared and planned in their action.
Before the war’s commencement, the Highway from Tigray to Gonder was blocked for three years under the Abiy regime, and the Highway from Tigray to Wello was intermittently blocked and unusable. Cars, buses, and trucks had to go for an extra 200 km longer route through Afar, and finally, all of them were blocked entirely since November 4, 2020:
- No humanitarian and NGOs access,
- There is no power supply up-to-date,
- There is no telephone, no banking, no Internet, no food, and the water system is cut off.
Indiscriminate bombing in cities, universities, installations, and residential areas were carried out for over a month. There are cases where all members of a family were killed in one bomb.
After looting factories, small and big industrial installations, workshops, they are purposely bombing them to hide their crimes.
To hide the massacres and mass graves, they have refused to let in independent investigators and observers. Above all, the UN is not allowed to go in anywhere where they are committing heinous crimes.
Carpet bombardments on towns, cities, and villages have killed thousands of innocent children, women, and the elderly. The indiscriminate carpet bombing of cities, towns, and villages is still ongoing, resulting in civilians’ mass casualties and death.
Internationally recognized Eritrean Refugee Centres in Tigray had been desecrated by Ethiopian and Eritrean troops. It has been confirmed that they forced 6000 refugees and involved most of them in the invading army.
We request the above international dignitaries to enquire the cause and effect of this uncalled and unwanted war imposed on the people of Tigray. The question is, does a government have the divine power to kill its citizens as it wishes and when it desires to obliterate them?
Gross discrimination and persecution of Tigrayan residents in Addis Ababa and other cities and Ethiopia towns are officially carried out.
The most successful airline in Africa with world-class services has today become mediocre. Ethiopian Airlines has become a flagship of ethnic cleansing Tigrayans. The dictatorial regime of Abiy has dismissed all Tigrayans overnight for just being Tigrayans.
There are nearly 100,000 Tigrayans incarcerated in prisons, and even more, told to stay at home under “house arrest” with no court order.
The Mayer of Addis Ababa sent a circular to all departments stating that “all non-Tigrayans have to watch Tigrayans closely among us and notify to authority for immediate action.”
All Tigrayan military personnel are under house arrest. All employees who were serving in peace missions all over Africa are recalled from their duties. Two hundred eighty of them were asked to hand over their guns in Somalia, and some were shot down.
Humanitarian Tigrayans in Israel, after realized that farmers of Tigray need to protect their harvest from locust. They bought a drone from China and sent it to Tigray to spray ant locust chemical. The Abiy Government refused to send the drone to Tigray. As a result, the locust inflicted heavy damage on the crop of the farmers. Worst of all was that the officials refused the drone, and the government helicopters only sprayed the adjacent Amhara-owned crops and let the swarm of locust eat the produce of the Tigrayan farmers.
Over 250,000 Eritrean soldiers, several armoured regiments, 8,000 civilian mechanics were involved in invading Tigray. Their duty was to loot and destroy public and private assets to crush the Tigrayan economy completely.
Abiy had over 500,000-foot soldiers, 400 hundred tanks supported by fighter jets, and UAE drones day and night hounding the people all over Tigray. These are the forces that attack while the Eritrean army and technicians’ have been looting and killing as if they are hunting animals.
Abiy’s contingents were not only those mentioned above. Demeke Mekonnen, Gedu Andargachew and Prosperity Party (PP) elites, and all the Amhara officials contribute to the war of attrition in Tigray. The Amhara militia, who are well-trained, are estimated to be about 150,000. Simultaneously, the Special Forces, paratroopers, and FANO (urban youth motivated for criminal activities) are estimated at 60,000. These are mainly attacking Tigrayans civilians in Western Tigray. The genocide is carried everywhere, but reports show that western Tigray is high in population displacement, hate crimes (organized HIV patients from Gonder are sent to infect innocent women), and engage in gang rape. Sordid crimes, hard to write them even on paper, are imposed on Welkait and Raya’s innocent population.
In conclusion, the war concocted on The Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) was, in essence, against Tigray’s entire people. President Isaias had been spewing hate for the last 20 years. As he mentioned repeatedly, the cause of the war (1998-2000) was not Bademe at all. It was more of the psychotic hate and warmongering attitude of Mr. Afeworki. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Ali, a former spy who divulged state secrets to Ethiopia’s primary enemies. Abiy and Isaias had instilled their partnership for at least 12 years. Their joint strategy could be to prolong their stay in power as far as they can. In front of them, indeed, TPLF is their primary gatekeeper. When the TPLF, with the Ethiopian public, changed medieval Ethiopia to the 21st century, their hate became more sordid. Abiy and his partners ( Isaias and Amhara elites) planned and executed the war campaign due to the hatred that goes deep into their bone marrow.
Therefore, we request the International Community to take firm actions against Abiy and Isaias governments, as mentioned earlier, who are waging war on Tigray’s peaceful people. We call upon all responsible governments and institutions to stop the ongoing genocide behind. International media and independent observers’ are prohibited from knowing what is going on in Tigray. We have evidence of videos and audio that inhuman atrocities are being carried out on innocent civilians all over Tigray since the start of the war on November 4, 2020:
- There are grave breaches of the Geneva Convention. The Ethiopian Federal Army, Eritrean Army, Amhara Special Forces, and Militias are committing genocide, war crimes against humanity, and gross human rights abuses, including rape of women and young girls in Tigray;
- the Ethiopian Federal Army, Eritrean Army, Amhara Special Forces, and Militias are looting industrial machinery, and hospital equipment and supplies, universities, hotels, churches, and museums artefacts and private properties, transporting them to Eritrea and Amhara region;
- Tigray is completely shut down from having the essential services to sustain the day-to-day people’s needs (no banking, no electricity, no communications, no water, transportation, and food). Collective punishment is used to starve Tigray people to death as a warfare method by the Abiy government, which prohibits Rule 53 of the International Humanitarian Law to use the civilian population’s starvation as a method of warfare.
We call upon you and others to react to the dire situation in Tigray as soon as possible.
WS Asfaw (from a concerned citizen)