Life is a Rabbit Pellet

Ramblings of a Zimbrindian's travels, life, and research.

Monday, June 13, 2005

More news from the Ethiopian front

I got another email from my cousin in Jimma this morning. She says it's actually describing events from June 10. (Note that these are her opinions and observations, not mine.)

Nice day to start my birthday with - a bomb blast which happened last night at the university campus here in Jimma. no news about anybody getting killed. The police and the military are on the alert now. There has been vigorous checking at the gates of the university. even expatriate staff were checked. In the afternoon, the ethiopian staff were asked to get down from the bus to
be checked at the gates. They didnt check the foreigners in the afternoon. People said that in addis, the streets were deserted and military were everywhere. We thought jimma was better but today, by noon, the military swarmed all over the place. The situation is quite tense but the university hasn't been closed. Classes are still going on for students who come to class. Exams are not postponed yet - though no one can say what will happen tomorrow or even the next minute.

It's the students who are so demonstrative against the government. The local people are angry but are not able to do anything, rather, they dont want to do anything for fear of the police. The country has a rural population of 85%, the educated are only about 15%. The 15% that struggle
against the government are ending up as corpses or filling up beds and verandahs in hospitals. but they are not ready to give up. The ruling govt has been in power for 14 years. The people have seen this country developing in the past 14 years to nothing, and so they dont want it to continue. We have no idea who is right and who is wrong-but if they come to a solution soon with no bloodshed, it will be better for all.

The weekend was quiet mainly because many of the students vacated the hostel because they are having their exams next week and it is hard for them to study in that atmosphere. Many have gone out of campus coz they were not involved in the problem but the police suspect them to be. The students are split into groups now - on the basis of their region. It seems one group has
arms (guns) and the police are supporting those students. It may be that those students might have planted the bomb on the night of June 9. No one has any idea of what will happen tomorrow, or the day after. Bye for now.


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