Armed Issa raiders attacked, from June 10 to June 12, the towns of Mille and Adaytu killing two health workers and close to 30 civilians in what is now considered an ongoing attempt to appropriate Afar land. The Issas are reportedly armed by Djibouti where an Issa dominated dictatorial regime is in place.
The troops of Meles Zenawi have also joined the fray and killed a number of Afars. Given the close relations between Meles Zenawi and Djibouti’s Omar Gelleh there are suspicions that the expansion and land appropriation of the armed Issas could have been encouraged by the two regimes. The Meles regime has recently ceded fertile Ethiopian territory, from Quara in Gondar to Gambella in the West, to the Sudan.
Ethiopian Afars are being uprooted and displaced by such attacks and also by the huge sugar cane plantation and factory to be set up in their traditional grazing area. The project, financed by the World Bank and unapproved by the local Afar authorities, is expected to displace some 200,000 Afars who would, as reported, be replaced by an equal number of Tigrean settlers.
The ruling front/ TPLF/ hails from Tigrai. The project has been denounced in the past as an environmental disaster with little or no benefit for the Afar people. The recent attack and brutal killings highlight the tense situation that exists in the area (Gadamytu, Adyatu, Undafoo, etc…). The Afars have been left to the mercy of the attackers armed mostly by the Djibouti government.
SOCEPP vigorously denounces the massacre of innocent Afars by armed Issas sponsored by the Djibouti regime. It also condemns the Meles Zenawi regime for aiding and abetting the attack on Afars and their land. The murder of innocent Afars demands strong condemnation against the killers, their sponsors and supporters.