ONLF rebel faction signs ceasefire deal with Ethiopia
By Tigrai Online
June 23 2010
Top officials of Ethiopian rebel group Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) have reportedly entered into a ceasefire agreement with Addis Ababa, Radio Garowe reports.
Mr. Salahudin Haji Abdirahman Maow, Chairman of one of the ONLF factions told reporters in Nairobi that the aim of the agreement which was signed in Germany was to benefit the population they represent.
“Our aim for this agreement is to elevate the suffering from the Somali people in Ethiopia, who have been oppressed for the last twenty seven years. The ceasefire would continue for three months,” he said.
Hussein Matan, the group’s army commander said they have informed their fighters to cease from any fire in respect to the agreement.
The agreement comes at the backdrop of denial by Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi who said on May that his government has not inked any agreement with the ONLF, but pointed out that the said agreement was between the administration in Ethiopian-controlled Somali region and the group.
Admiral Mohammed Omar Osman, a senior ONLF leader has previously announced that his group would not ceasefire until the region is liberated from Ethiopian occupation.
The ONLF group, which was founded in 1984, is fighting to make the oil-rich Somali region of Ogaden in eastern Ethiopia an independent state and has warned foreign oil explorers against prospecting on its land.