11/11/10 (B577) Ethiopian rebel leader calls for united front against government // Un leader éthiopien rebelle appelle à la création d’un front uni d’opposition au Gouvernement (En Anglais – Info lecteur)

The Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) leadership has called for collective opposition to stop to what it termed it as “one man rule” of the Ethiopian government led by Meles Zenawi.

Speaking at a workshop organized by the Solidarity Movement for a New Ethiopia (SMNE), in London, the head of OLF Diplomacy in Europe Shigux Geleta, has reaffirmed his organization’s commitment for partnership with other opposition groups.

Meles’ ruling Ethiopian Peoples’ Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) won a landslide victory in the country’s May 23 election sweeping over 99% of total votes.

“Whatever factors contributed for the single-handed Meles’ party to exist on power, it will certainly fall sooner or later as a result of its own internal mismatching policy and the political reaction it entails in the public at large”, Geleta said.

He said that forces opposing the Ethiopian government need to join forces to achieve their goal of removing Zenawi’s government, who has been in power since 1991.

Geleta said that the fall of the government would “be hastened […]if all forces opposing the tyrannical system co-operate with one another on the basis of mutual interests and equality.”

The spokesperson called for a much-needed partnership to tackle the growing threats posed by the ‘‘one-man rule” in Ethiopia.

He also said the current government had done serious damage to democracy, land, people and the environment in Ethiopia.

The OLF was established in 1973 by Oromo nationalists to fight against what they call Ethiopian colonial rule.

OLF fighters are mainly based along the Ethiopia-Kenya common border from where they on-off cross- border attacks against Addis Ababa.

Last week, Kenyan authorities said their security forces had launched a joint military offensive with Ethiopia against the OLF.

The aim of the operation was to ‘‘wipe-out’’ Oromo rebels who were hiding in the expansive rangeland of Marsabit County in Kenya according to the two governments.

Ethiopia’s government has long designated the OLF as a terrorist group.