January 18, 2008

Human Rights League of the Horn: Press Release No. 7

January 2008

Abduction and Deportation of Oromo Refugees in Somaliland

The Somaliland security forces have continued to hunt down and abduct the Oromo refugees living in Hargessa, and hand them over to the Ethiopian government. According to the HRLHA reporter in the region, four Oromo refugees have been handed over to Ethiopian security agents operating in Somaliland on the 13th of January 2008. The four deported Oromo refugees are:
1. Abba Cali Abba Biyya, age 45, born in Hararge
2. Riyad Haji Kamal, age 31, born in Bale / Gassara and father of two
3. Jamal Wallaga; and
4. Another refugee whose name was not identified at the moment. They were handed over to the Ethiopian security forces in the boarder town Wacale. The whereabouts of these refugees is not known since then.

The HRLHA reporter has also confirmed that the list of another forty Oromo refugees, who are strictly wanted by the Ethiopian security agents, has been given to Somaliland security forces to be hunted down. Because of this, Oromo refugees currently living in Hargessa have been forced to change their residential addresses almost on daily basis. HRLHA reporter added that some TPLF spying agents have been sent to Somaliland to help in identifying and abducting those wanted Oromo refugees.
The fate and whereabouts of these Oromo refugees is not known. The Human rights League of the Horn of Africa / HRLHA believes that what has happened to these refugees is in violation of what were provided for in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights. In the Universal declaration of Human Rights Article 14/1, it was stated that, “Every one has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.” Also, in African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights, it was stated in Article 12/1 that, “ Every individual shall have the right to freedom of movement and reside the borders of the state provided he abide by the law.”
The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) is highly concerned about the safety and security of those refugees. It urges other human rights agencies (local, regional and international) to join hands with it and condemn these illegal and inhuman acts of both the Ethiopian and the Somaliland governments against defenseless refugees. It also requests governments of the West and other international organizations to interfere so that the safety and security of those refugees would be secured.
The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa/HRLHA is a non-political organization which attempts to challenge abuses of human rights of the peoples of various nations and nationalities in the Horn of Africa.
HRLHA is aimed at defending fundamental human rights including freedoms of thought, expression, movement and organization. It is also aimed at raising the awareness of individuals about their own basic human rights and that of others. It has intended to work on the observances as well as due processes of law. It promotes the growth and development of free and vigorous civil societies.

Human Rights League of the Horn

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