Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,
we are sending this urgent message of ours to you, believing that you would take it seriously and bring it to its realisation and solution.
Firstly, let us confess it to you, that, for us Kunama people to come to and live in America is not a victory, but a defeat and a shame, seeing the crisis in our country and the suffering of our fellow-Kunama, in our native and ancestral land.
As we all know, the Kunama ethnic-group has been a victim, throughout the Eritrean liberation struggle, and their suffering escalated, after independence, at the hands of the Shabia’s regime.
Today, the rest of the Eritrean population, including the Shabia regime’s supporters, are victims of the same evil-fate. As a result, all Eritreans, regardless of their ethnicities and religious affiliations, particularly the youth, are fleeing from their beloved country. But escaping the dictator and dictatorship and trying to reach Europe or America, is not the solution. This was the reason why, we Kunama, in the first place, fled to Ethiopia and massively joined our Kunama organisation, the Democratic Movement for the Liberation of the Eritrean Kunama (DMLEK) and struggle for our people, as we we had done earlier. But, such genuine intention was destroyed by some selfish and narrow-minded DMLEK’s leaders, namely by Kornelios Adolay Osman.
We all know the DMLEK’s leader, Kornelios Adolay Osman, as “The Man Of All Evils”, who has been kidnapping, imprisoning, torturing and killing a lot of innocent, educated and knowledgeable ethnic-Kunama members, for no reasons at all. Due to this, many DMLEK’s members abandoned it and went either to Shimelba’s refugee-camp or to Sudan. Some of them had even gone back to their enemy, the Shabia’s regime. The DMLEK’s leader Kornelios Adolay Osman however, did not learn and has not learnt from what was and is happening to the DMLEK and to the Kunama people. His evil activities became known to all Kunama and therefore no one was willing to struggle alongside the DMLEK.
Currently, the DMLEK’s members and the Kunama refugees are finding themselves in very critical conditions. The DMLEK’s members are abandoning the struggle and trying to get to the Shimelba’s refugee-camp, but on their way, they are being intercepted by the Ethiopian police and handed back to the DMLEK, before they reach Abbaguna, a village where newly arrived Eritreans are being provided with the refugees’ cards. The more DMLEK’s members abandon the struggle, the more frustrated becomes Kornelios Adolay Osman and releases his frustration upon innocent Kunama, peacefully living among their fellow-Kunama refugees, but punished as scape-goats.
The DMLEK’s leader has created divisions and hatred, among the Kunama refugees, dividing them in terms of their village and kinship origins, as well as fomenting conflicts and divisions even among the same family members.
On October 15, 2009, at 01, 15, Kornelios Adolay Osman’s agents, threw a bomb, into Simon Osman’s house, in the Shimelba refugee-camp, and wounded his niece Haregu Abdu and friends. Such attempted assaults have been taking place regularly, since the year 2000.
Kornelios Adolay Osman’s plan is to cleanse the Kunama people, of their intellectuals and of those individuals accusing him of being a criminal and using a criminal leadership style, thus becoming objects of his hatred.
There are no other clear reasons, for the DMLEK’s leader, for kidnapping, killing, setting fires,throwing bombs and stones and conducting other plots to assassinate those individuals. The DMLEK’s leader had been committing such crimes in front of all refugees. There are no reactions to such crimes, either by the UNHCR’s officials, or by the Ethiopian local authorities, except by SAWRAWI-BAITO, which had tried to intervene and protect, our innocent Kunama refugees, from Kornelios Adolay Osman’ victimisation acts.
SAWRAWI-BAITO’s intervention however, did not last long, as it was banned, (under Kornelios Adolay Osman’s request), by the Ethiopian local authorities, not to enter the refugee-camps.
We take this opportunity, to thank SAWRAWI-BAITO for its efforts on behalf of our Kunama refugees. Shimelba is not a refugee-camp, for the Kunama people, but a political play-ground of the DMLEK’s leader, Kornelios Adolay Osman. Only those Kunama supporting the DMLEK are allowed to get a refugee-status. Those not supporting it, are not left to live in peace, are not given the opportunity to get a job, apply for, be approved of, allowed to depart and be resettled in a third country. One is always under the threat of the DMLEK, branded with different nicknames; isolated from the refugee community; detained, jailed and even killed.
From time to time, such problems have been reported to the UNHCR’s officials and to the Ethiopian local authorities, but they have always been given a deaf ear. The DMLEK’s leaders make things worse, by lying to the UNHCR and to the Ethiopian authorities that the ex-members (combatants) of the DMLEK are “terrorists” and with this label, their applications for resettlement, in third countries, are either rejected or, if approved of, are kept indefinitely, with the pretext of “pending”.
The Kunama youth still crossing into Ethiopian, seeking for refuge, but if they happen to fall in the Hands of the DMLEK’s forces, they are forced to join the struggle. If they refuse, they are either detained and jailed or denied of the refugee-ID-Cards and status.
With this message of ours, we would like to ask the EDA, which claims to stand for the Eritrean people, whether we Kunama too are Eritreans or not.
If we are, why is the EDA leaving the Kunama be detained, jailed, tortured and killed, by the DMLEK’s leader, Kornelios Adolay Osman?
Why is the EDA tolerating the criminal activities of Kornelios Adolay Osman’s agents throwing bombs into houses where women, children and elderly Kunama are living in peace?
Why is the EDA abandoning the Kunama at the mercy of Kornelios Adolay Osman?
How does the EDA expect, the Eritrean youth to join it, if it does not protect it, from the hands of criminal leaders like Kornelios Adolay Osman?
We Kunama, do not see Kornelios Adolay Osman, different than Isaias Afwerki.
If EDA is either incapable of or unwilling to fight and defeat dictators and criminal elements, within its own member-organisations and their leaders, it does not make sense for it, to try to struggle against, defeat and overthrow Isaias Afwerki.
We Kunama are totally unable to understand and explain the attitude and the behaviour of the EDA and of its member-organisations, regarding the sad state of the Kunama refugees in Shimelba refugee-camps and of the DMLEK’s ex-combatants.
The EDA’s leadership and the leaders of EDA’s member-organisations, do very well-know the DMLEK’s leaders Kornelios Adolay Osman and his conflict-prone character and behaviour. They do very well know, the criminal activities he is conducting against the Kunama refugees and how badly they are suffering.
We are therefore appealing to the EDA’s leadership to take a strong stand against Kornelios Adolay, as we Kunama alone cannot struggle against two enemies at the same time: Kornelios Adolay Osman and Isaias Afwerki.
We have seen criminals at home, and what we are seeing and experiencing today is the continuation of the Shabia’s regime. We must correct it.
If we Eritreans, are to struggle for democracy, we Kunama in the Diaspora are appealing to and the EDA urging to take up helping the helpless: the Kunama people. This may come, to EDA, as a surprise, but it should investigate the criminal activities of Kornelion Adolay Osman, and stop him from continuing to harass and persecute the Kunama refugees, and this in view also of sending a clear message to the Eritrean people that criminals leaders, no matter whether in the opposition or in the ruling regime, have to be fought against and their evil-acts openly condemned.
We are appealing to and urging the Ethiopian local authorities in Tigray to take notice that Kornelios Adolay Osman is intending to destroy the Kunama people.
A lot of people have, at different times and circumstances, informed the Ethiopian local security forces, about the kidnappins, jailing, torturing and killing of many innocent and brave Kunama individuals, at the orders of the DMLEK’s leader, Kornelios Adolay Osman, but, following those reports, no reactions have been shown and no actions have ever been taken, by those forces. Kornelios Adolay Osman has always claimed: “Ethiopia does not know you (Kunama) and if I kill you, no one is going to say anything”.
In January, 2004, Kornelios Adolay Osman, came to Waalanihbi refugee-camp and ordered the Kunama elderly inviduals, Adam Musa and Lager Gaia and some youth to kill certain Kunama individuals, assuring them that the Ethiopian government would not say anything.
At his orders, they tried, on January 8, 2004, to kill the Kunama individuals Kornelios Adolay Osman wanted to have them eliminated, because of their blood-ties with those he had already killed in prison. However, thanks to some Eritrean-Tigrian refugees and some local police, those Kunama individuals were saved. From the sides of the Ethiopial local authorities and officials, we did not see either reaction or action.
In May 2004, before the refugees were moved to the Shimelba refugee-camp, the agents of the DMLEK’s leader, set fire on the hay, acquired by certain Kunama individuals they had regarded as opposing the move.
The fire started in the house of a Tigryan videoteque’s owner, named Meuz, which was close to the heap of hay. The fire destroyed a lot of make-shift houses and also the hay, the DMLEK’s leader had intended to have it burnt-up.
That same night, before the fire started, the DMLEK informed that the Shabia spies had entered the refugee-camp. Some Kunama, curious about the fire, about the DMLEK’s false information and noticing some activities, during the night, reported to the police, of having spotted a suspect who was to be questioned. We were disappointed by and felt sad, considering the negligence of the local Ethiopian authorities, especially by the Tigray’s officials.
We Kunama had never expect something like that, either from Tigray State or from the UNHCR’ authorities. We had crossed borders into Tigray, trusting the Ethiopian government, the Tigray State’s authorities and their people, because of the historic and cultural ties we together have. It is very unfortunate that they know and trust only Kornelios Adolay Osman and accept and tolerate his crimes and criminal activities against the Kunama people.
Realising the carelessness of the Ethiopian authorities, Kornelios Adolay Osman himself claims that they trust him more than anyone else.
As far as we Kunama know and understand, Kornelios Adolay Osman, is not a Kunama nationalist, but one who had destroyed the then booming Kunama liberation movement, killed talented and prominent Kunama individuals like,
the Surveyor Hussein Yusuf;
Nuri Tukka and chased out and away, many other Kunama who were genuinely willing and dedicated to struggling for the rights of their Kunama people.
By accomplishing this, Kornelios Adolay Osman, is boasting, as if he had destroyed the Shabia’s regime.
Before the DMLEK’s leader killed those innocent Kunama, his aims and attempts had been reported to the Tigray’s local authorities, but no precautionary measures were either considered or taken.
We had joined the DMLEK and innocently thinking of struggling for the rights of our people, without knowing the behind-lying ill-intentions of the DMLEK’s leaders, who has been often heard stating that “the Ethiopians would not trust the DMLEK if it does not kill some Kunama”.
Those Kunama individuals were killed in different times and the reports were handed over every time one of them had been killed. No actions have ever been taken. In fact, the local officials collaborated with the DMLEK’s leaders, transgressing and violating the Kunama people’s traditional principle and system of settling blood-related killings, and instead detaining, imprisoning and sentencing, for many years, two Kunama individuals, named, Diglel Andrea and Woldu, falsely accusing them of killing the DMLEK’s combatant, Denadai Pietro, in Shimelba, while the true killer was a different person who too, died in a prison, in Mekele. It is therefore, not only the DMLEK’s leaders, but also the local authorities in Tigray too, are responsible for the lives of the
Kunama people and for the cause of the Kunama people’s struggle.
On the other hands, we really wish to thank, some police officers of Shiraro, who, though had often been told, by the DMLEK’s leaders, to kidnap and kill some innocent Kunama, at the Shimelba refugee-camp, they refused and even informed those individuals to be careful about, and not wander around alone.
We do also remember some civilians of the Tigray State who had played their valuable role in protecting and saving the Kunama lives, from the evil-plots of the DMLE’s leaders.
Finally, we wish to inform the Ethiopian authorities and the EDA’s leaders, neither to be stunned by nor doubt about the pieces of information we are providing them, because they are very true and only like a drop of water of the Red-Sea, compared to the many evil-activities of the DMLEK’s leaders.
Kornelios Adolay Osman has a long plan of destroying the Kunama lives and ruin the Kunama just cause of struggling for their legitimate rights.
We also wish that the Ethiopian authorities and the EDA’s leadership consider Kornelios Adolay Osman’s mental state. As we have been mentioning his name, many a times, in this message, we very much suspect of his mental health. His actions do not appear to be those of a mentally sane person. He is lone actor, very refractory to any one trying to give him pieces of advice, making suggestions and asking for his co-operation and this has been repeatedly witnessed and confirmed by his colleagues within the EDA’s leadership and organisations’ leaders. He avoids every contact with them.
By killing many of his own fellow-Kunama ethnic-members, Kornelios Adolay Osman has written an unknown and totally shameful chapter in the history of the Kunama people. With the killings of those Kunama individuals, the DMLEK’s leader, has spread the seeds of hostility, division and hatred, among the Kunama refugees, among the Diaspora Kunama and among those at home.
By his persecution of the Kunama people abroad, Kornelios Adoaly Osman is collaborating with the “ethnic-cleansing” activities, being conducted, upon the Kunama people, by the regime’s authorities, in the Kunama land.
Some of us Kunama, do really suspect Kornelios Adolay Osman to be a spy and an agent of the Shabia’s regime. We are therefore appealing to the concerned authorities, to take the necessary measures, to stop the killings, the persecutions and the destructive activities of the present DMLEK’s leader, against the Kunama people.
Not a single Kunama had ever thought of or wished to be resettled in third countries, but the evil-actions of Kornelios Adolay Osman, forced many of us to make that choice. We could not live peacefully, even as refugees.
No one came to our help and guide us to look for other alternatives. We made that choice feeling hopeless and abandoned by the concerned authorities.
Those Kunama today feeling lucky to be in third countries, are worried about their people they have left behind.
We had enough of the Shabia’s regime; we do not wish to encounter Shabia everywhere and every time.
We Kunama are ready to keep struggling on, within the opposition, if the EDA and the EDA’s leadership is willing, able and capable of stopping the wrong-doings and the evil-policy of the present DMLEK’s leadership, of Kornelios Adolays Osman’s spray of killings and helping other genuinely intentioned and responsible Kunama to take over the DMLEK’s leadership and conduct the Kunama people’s struggle for their legitimate rights. No Kunama, whether adult or youth is ready to struggle under the present leadership of the DMLEK.
At this moment, for many Kunama, the DMLEK and its leadership equal to Shabia and to the Shabia’s regime.
Kornelios Adolay Osman has never learnt and will never learnt, from his past and present mistakes and he will never admit them. He is spending sleepless nights only preoccupied with and scared of the revengeful waves, which might be coming his way. Finding himself under such trauma, for Kornelios Adolay Osman, peace has become his enemy and terror his friend.
We are appealing to all forces to, let us join together and get rid of the dictators like, Kornelios Adola Osman and his role-model, Isaias Afwerki.
and with regards,
the Kunama People Living in North-America