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Gabcast! Gotoota Oromo Haa Yaadannu. #17 - Wallee.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Meles regime has hired a Public relation firms

June 16, 2006 - A reliable publication, Dwyer’s Public Relations News, reported on June 8 that the Meles regime has hired one of the largest lobbying and pubic relations firms in Washington. The firm, DLA Piper Rudnick Gray Cary will receive $50,000 a month to provide legislative, regulatory and PR services to the Government of Ethiopia. Dwyer states that the Ethiopian government’s major U.S. concern is over the Ethiopia Consolidation Act of 2005 that was introduced by Rep. Chris Smith (R-HJ), and now has 20 co-sponsors. The firm will report directly to Samuel Assefa, Ethiopia’s U.S. ambassador.

In a way, this contract is a tremendous compliment to the many Ethiopians who have been working passionately to convince Congress to take some action in response to the human rights abuses of the Meles regime. It also shows how seriously Meles regime takes HR 4423 and the power of dedicated individuals. The Meles government is particularly concerned that Congress will launch a process that will lead to a proper investigation of the killing of innocent civilians in Ethiopia and that it will impose visa restrictions on travel by government officials who have been involved in human rights abuses.

Piper Rudnick has a reputation as a Democratic operation. Its partners include former Senator George Mitchell and former Representative Richard Gephardt. It is unlikely that any amount of expensive lobbying will obscure the fact that Meles has committed gross violations of human rights and has suppressed democracy and freedom of expression.
Leaked government documents indicate that Meles regime has instructed Ethiopian embassies and officials to conduct a dirty tricks and harassment campaign against members of the Diaspora. Be on the alert. The tactics are likely to include false accusations against Ethiopians who are active in the fight for democracy and human rights.

Mesfin Mekonen

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