Ambassador calls for restraint in use of lethal force, constructive political engagement

Ambassador calls for restraint in use of lethal force, constructive political engagement

The U.S. Ambassador to Ethiopia, Michael Raynor appealed for calm in light of events over the past several weeks in Ethiopia by drawing attention to the US’s support for increasing the pace of democratic reform, respect for human rights, and creating space for inclusive dialogue in the past.“One thing I’ve observed during my four-plus months here is that matters are rarely as clear-cut as anyone would like them to be. My goal is for our Embassy to play a constructive role in Ethiopia, one that supports the aspirations of those who seek a better future, without dictating what that future should be or how Ethiopia should get there,” the Ambassador said.
While lauding some promising steps in releasing political detainees in recent weeks, Ambassador Mikael called on the Ethiopian government to let people “express themselves peacefully, and to be confident that they can do so. Lethal force to protect the safety of the public, even in the face of violent protests, must always be a last resort.”
The Ambassador also urged the Ethiopian people “to demonstrate their commitment to peaceful expression and dialogue. Political engagement needs to be done constructively – through strengthening institutions rather than destroying them, and never through the destruction of property, livelihoods, and lives.”
The Ambassador said he was upset by the reports of deaths and violence, “even as I am hopeful about what Ethiopia can accomplish if stated goals of reform are followed through with quick and comprehensive action. As we seek to partner with all Ethiopians toward that better future, everyone must do their part. The United States will stay the course in Ethiopia, and I hope I can count on each of you to do the same.”

Share this post

Post Comment