Immediate Release: Ethiopian Americans in Seattle met to denounce ethnic
violence targeting Tigreans, formed a committee for further actions.
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(Face book live/other) conference
to be determined.
Briefing on the formation of committee.
September 7, 2016
Americans, specifically ethnic Tigreans, in the Greater Seattle Area
met on Saturday,
September 4, 2016,
at the Tigrean Community Center
and elected a committee to monitor, respond and mobilize resources
to help victims of ethnically motivated attacks against Tigreans in Gondar
and other parts of Amhara region. The public meeting was
prompted by the very few diaspora extremist group's recent wave
of deplorable ethnic violence and harassment against Tigreans in Ethiopia
and the diaspora.
community members expressed outrage and disgust at the violent attacks
against the lives and property of Tigreans by hate groups in parts of
Amhara region, Ethiopia. In
addition, community members mandated the elected committee to
combat hate crimes, hate speech and hate groups on their behalf. The
committee will also make contacts and coordinate with other anti-hate
groups in Seattle and elsewhere.
committee is currently engaged in establishing a network in every part of
the world, and pledge the communities across the globe to remain united,
be vigilant, and strengthen existing communities, towards a common goal,
committee has since met on several occasions to produce this statement and
discuss further actions.
resurgence of cruel racist and bigoted groups
with their persistent hate campaigns through extremist media
outlets have escalated in recent months and risen to actions tantamount to
ethnic cleansing in Amhara region, Ethiopia. The violence has been
perpetrated by violent hate groups embed in anti-government protests.
Ethnically motivated hostilities against Tigreans, aka Tegaru, have also
risen in the diaspora. These online and offline hostilities include
harassment, bullying, silencing, spreading hateful stereotypes and
prejudice, disruption of social and cultural events intended to
intimidate, marginalize, traumatize
and isolate Tigreans. This
has to stop.
committee will work diligently within the scope of each cities/countries’
jurisdiction toward the safety and well-being of Tigreans both in Ethiopia
and the diaspora through education, litigation,
and advocacy. The committee will announce further steps in the
coming weeks to the public.
of the most recent unfortunate ethnically motivated attacks are:
On August 21, 2016,
Al-Jazeera reported around
seven Tigreans were profiled and killed
in Gondor by gangs. Many homes and business were
destroyed and many fled the city to spare their lives. Most
notably, four recognized hotels/motels were destroyed/damaged because they
were owned by Ethiopians of Tigrean-origin.
Force formed by the state
of Tigrai region recently released press release recognizing ethnically
motivated mass deportation. Their exact number of the racially motivated
victims are unknown as they are scattered and displace throughout Ethiopia
and Sudan. So far, 4060 citizens were fled to the Tigrai state leaving
some of their properties and loved ones behind.
September 04, 2016 around midnight racially motivated groups violently
stormed at the law abiding Ethiopian-Canadians citizens while celebrating
the “Ashenda” event in Calgary, Canada.
Multiple Sudanese media outlets have reported thousands of Tigrayans have
entered the Sudan fleeing anti-government protests from
bordering Amhara region.
anti-Tigrean movement is supported and financed by hate groups in the
diaspora. Hate groups and individuals have been publicly advocating
attacks on the people of Tigray to further their political ends.
Deliberately and systematically targeting ethnic groups and races has
always had dark consequences. We say, “Never Again!”. This hate
campaign will simply not be met with silence anymore. We are sending a
clear message to agents of hate that we won’t relent in pursuing
justice. We won’t appease hateful groups.
the victimization of Tigrayans in the Amhara Regional State, concerned
Tigreans have no resentment on the Amhara people nor fall into the trap of
the forces of destruction. We welcome, thank and recognize reports
that the Amhara people who have been sheltering and protecting ethnic
Tigrayans from violent bandits in the region. We encourage and hope the
people of Amhara will continue this exemplary function. We
will also be remiss if we fail to mention our gratitude to the
Ethio-Somali Region for their generous contribution of 10 million ETB for
Tigreans displaced from Gondar.
forward, we will expose hate groups to the public. At this moment, we are
unambiguously saying the targeting of Tigreans for such assault campaign
and propaganda to further political ends is intolerable. We condemn all
and any form of ethnic
attacks in the strongest possible terms. The sheer belligerency of
the verbal assault and bigotry against the Tigreans is unprecedented in
its incivility and savagery in workplace and public.
understand the provocation by anti-Tigrean hate groups is putting an undue
burden on Tegaru individuals and are reacting emotionally to the attacks
by well-organized hate groups.
urge all Ethiopian Tegaru and law abiding citizens specifically the youth
to show a great restraint and not to be tempted to respond in the violent
ways of haters. Do not be lured to their levels by taking the law
into your hands. If their actions even remotely compromise your safety
alert the authorities right away. Revenge and vigilantism
of any sort could lead to untendered consequence as well create a cycle of
violence that escalates out of control.
Tegaru who reside in the great state of the Washington believe
a strong society is built based on respect for all peoples regardless of
origin, race national origin, gender, religion or other
protected status. We the people of the United States of America
regardless of ethnic heritage are
inspired by the remarkable idea that all human beings are born free
and equal in dignity which owes much to the people of many different
ethnic origins and cultures who have chosen to make their homes. Sadly,
many innocent Ethio-American Tegaru have
been traumatized, attacked and bullied physically and emotionally recently
through persistent by well-organized groups.
Tigrean people have throughout their history shown that their collective
willpower of survival and their bravery of resistance in the struggle to
combat the dangers of extermination through displacement, human-caused misery,
and insurmountable violence. No current or earlier watchdogs, no human
rights groups and no government of dignity were up to condemn the scorched
earth policy and killing squads of those hateful groups.
paving a foundation for something more sinister. What history teaches us
is not good. More importantly, silence and denial in the face of this
brewing storm is
consequently tragic. We have witnessed serious signs of the unimaginable
destruction to follow and have resolutely chosen to act now to diffuse the
gathering storm rather than mourn for generations to follow.
will champion the ideals of democracy, peace,
and ethnic equality. No
Ethiopian shall ever be
persecuted because of ethnicity, gender or religion or other
protected statuses enshrined by national and international law. This
should be more obvious to our fellow Ethiopian-Americans. It is a
supreme irony that those who had fled oppression and persecution are
fueling a campaign of hate and ethnic cleansing from the comforts and
privilege of democracy.
deeply saddened by the loss of many innocent lives and their loved
ones as a result of the protest clashes and prison deaths. This
is a tough time for everyone involved that require great restraint.
It is morally disgraceful to take advantage unsuspecting youth and civilians.
we call upon fellow Ethiopians to join and combat sinister hate campaigns
before it ignites an indistinguishable civil war and/or
communal clashes where we all lose. This declaration under no
circumstances disavows political opposition and peaceful protests. It,
however, disavows violence and any semblance of ethnic cleansing.
cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out
hate; only love can do that.” ~
Martin Luther King, Jr.
Committee, Wednesday September 6, 2016, Seattle, Washington.
(Ashenda, a cultural event, disruption by misguided group in
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