Ethiopia’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Geneva, Ambassador Jeenbe Kebede, said the commission was “politically motivated” and that their findings were unprofessional and biased.
The ambassador said Ethiopia has been the subject of an unfair and partisan investigation into the body this August for more than a year.
“Such misguided campaigns against Ethiopia must stop at a time when the Ethiopian government is implementing the recommendations of the Joint Investigation Team. Ethiopia adheres to its international, human rights and international humanitarian law obligations.
Even at a time, the country is facing a rebel armed group that has threatened the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country, Ethiopia remains firmly committed to human rights,” he said.
The Rebellion is a group apparently intent on overturning political and economic reforms being implemented by a popularly elected government and trying to use violence to bring about an unconstitutional change of government.
“From the very beginning Ethiopia objected to the establishment of the commission. The commission was set up on a series of wrong premises. Ironically, some members of this council accepted this and expressed regret saying that it was politically motivated. ,
However, despite these objections, the government put in a genuine effort to arrive at modalities that could allow us to work with the Commission.
The Commission was adamant that its mandate was not confined to the conflict zone, but to the entire country. It is also wanted as it unnecessarily duplicates and undermines the work of the Joint Investigation Team, he underlined.
“The Commission has now submitted a report of substandard quality, its allegations being baseless and not meeting the standard of evidence for such investigation. The report fails to meet a slight degree of objectivity, professionalism and objectivity.”
“It makes serious allegations against the government and its armored forces based only on telephone conversations and a web-based submission without adding evidence; it is irresponsible. This practice of targeting countries such as Ethiopia has the authority and credibility of the Human Rights Council. weakens it,” he said.
The report is selective and discriminatory and its findings are politically motivated, Ambassador Jeenbe said.
He said the TPL violated the humanitarian ceasefire by resuming the conflict by looting the fuel earmarked for the distribution of humanitarian aid. But, it is absurd that the commission tries to portray the government as a criminal in this scenario.
“We believe that there should be accountability and security to ensure that humanitarian aid is not diverted to further TPLF’s aggression.”
“The commission could have inquired into the atrocities committed by the TPLF in Amhara and Afar regions. However, it made only fleeting references, and completely ignored the use of child soldiers and the violent and forceful recruitment of child soldiers by the TPLF, including in refugee camps in neighboring countries. This raises questions about the Commission’s ability to perform this task fairly and impartially.”
“Ethiopia is taking concrete measures to bring perpetrators of human rights violations to justice. In this effort, we will continue to work with the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights in Ethiopia and other international partners. The Inter-Ministerial Task Force has published a preliminary report outlining the findings for some of the areas affected by the conflict.
Ethiopia is committed to a peaceful resolution of the conflict under the auspices of the African Union, he said.
The ambassador further called on council members to reject the report and to reject any attempt to increase the commission’s mandate.