Skip to main content

Sign up for our newsletter.

Quality journalism. Progressive values. Direct to your inbox.

For Immediate Release


Hamid Bendaas, 202-450-0491

Press Release

Rep. Ellison Briefing on Human Rights and Democracy in Ethiopia


In November 2015, mostly peaceful student protests broke out in Ethiopia’s Oromia region. The Ethiopian government’s brutal crackdown brought to the surface broader discontent over the suppression of critical rights and freedoms that extends beyond any single issue or ethnic group. These protests have expanded well beyond the Oromia region and developed into Ethiopia’s longest and most widespread protest movement since the ruling party took power in 1991.  

This briefing, hosted by Rep. Keith Ellison (D-MN), will examine the current state of human rights and democracy in Ethiopia. Speakers will provide an overview of the human rights situation and challenges, as well as the challenges faced by many of Ethiopia’s ethnic groups. They will also recommend actions for members of Congress to advance human rights and promote stabilization.

WHAT: Briefing on the State of Human Rights and Democracy in Ethiopia

WHEN: Tuesday, January 30, 2018, 3:00PM - 4:30PM

WHERE: 121 Cannon House Office Building


  • Felix Horne, Senior Researcher, Horn of Africa, Human Rights Watch;
  • Anuradha Mittal, Executive Director, The Oakland Institute;
  • Abdi Mohamoud, President, The Ogaden Voice for Peace;
  • Tewodrose Tirfe, Co-Founder, Amhara Association of America;
  • Teshite Wako, President, Oromo Community of Minnesota, and
  • Moderated by Lauren Ploch Blanchard, African Affairs Specialist, Congressional Research Service


Rep. Keith Ellison has represented the Fifth Congressional District of Minnesota in the U.S. House of Representatives since taking office on January 4, 2007. The Fifth Congressional District is the most vibrant and diverse district in Minnesota with a rich history and traditions. The Fifth District includes the City of Minneapolis and the surrounding suburbs.

US Gas Flaring Releases Five Times More Methane Than Previously Thought

"This study adds to the growing body of research that tells us that the oil and gas industry has a flaring problem," said Jon Goldstein of EDF, which conducted related research on the practice.

Jessica Corbett ·

Activists Call Fed Pilot Program to Assess Banks' Climate Risk a 'Welcome First Step'

"To truly safeguard financial stability," said one campaigner, "the Fed must further introduce policies that reflect the high risk of fossil fuel investments."

Brett Wilkins ·

'Gut Punch': Biden Pulls Student Debt Relief for Millions as GOP States Sue

"The Biden administration told several million people they'd see their debt reduced by $10-20K, and a month later quietly wrote 'just kidding' on a website," said one affected borrower.

Brett Wilkins ·

Controlled by Right-Wing Justices, US Supreme Court's Approval Hits All-Time Low

"This is what happens when SCOTUS nominees lie about settled law at their nomination hearings," said one observer.

Kenny Stancil ·

Acidification of Arctic Happening Up to 4 Times Faster Than Other Oceans

The research followed reports that the Arctic is warming nearly four times faster than the Earth as a whole.

Julia Conley ·

Common Dreams Logo