Monday, August 24, 2009

Interview with the Ethiopian Reporter

I am extensively quoted in Namrud Berhane's article "The policy shift debate" in the Ethiopian Reporter. Here is the beginning of the article:
A critical US State Department human rights report, and a very strongly worded response to it from the Ethiopian side, the recent visit of the secretary of state Clinton to seven African nations which “excluded” Ethiopia, Obama’s engagement policy and the push for negotiations with Eritrea…. some have already begun to argue these are indications of a policy shift by the new US administration regarding the Horn. Former US Ambassador to Ethiopia David Shinn, however dismisses such notions saying that such developments can not be taken as a sign of shift in US policy. “While I believe Ethiopia would have been an appropriate country to include on Secretary of State Clinton's schedule, I do not interpret the fact that she did not visit on this occasion as a shift of US policy. Secretary of State Rice did visit Ethiopia in late 2007. US Trade Representative Ron Kirk, who accompanied Secretary of State Clinton to Kenya, made a special point of visiting Ethiopia. I have no doubt that Secretary of State Clinton will visit Ethiopia on some future occasion. I would not make very much of the omission of Addis Ababa from her schedule and I do not interpret this as an effort to look for alternative allies in the Horn. Let's be honest there are very few potential allies for the US to choose from throughout the wider region,” Shinn told The Reporter.
The rest of the article can be found here.

1 comment:

  1. Dear amb david,

    it is nice to see you in touch with ethiopian politics. as a pro-democracy ethiopian, i have high respect for you. as you know the election is coming up in ethiopia. i hope you will be more vocal on the news agencies by contributing to a better election. right now, there is a new group called FDD or MEDREK that has united around 9 opposition parties. it is very good to have one voice. but one of the fake "opposition" groups like EDP of Lidetu Ayalewu has been attacking FDD recently. if you have heard the news, Mr. Lidetu and EDP (former UEDP-MEDHIN) have been supporting the meles zenawi dictatorship.
    i hope that american government would encourage the progress made by the FDD alliance of several oppositoin parties.
    the FDD has oromo, tigray, amhara, southern and all ethiopian representation. but it is being attacked by meles zenawi.

    anyway, meles zenawi's fake "Election board" has awarded the old name CUD to a pro-TPLF people like Ayele Chamiso.
    in addition, meles has put regional parties like SPDP and afar/gambella shadow and pro-TPLF parties.

    This means, the 2010 election will be between Meles zenawi and his puppets (like EDP and the fake CUD)

    this would be a disaster! american government must stand with FDD/MEDREK who are demanding that election board, judiciary and military become INDEPENDENT as a pre-requiste for participating in the election.

    otherwise, it would become a one-party election.