By Audra Streetman

DENVER (AP/CBS4) – The Oromo Community of Colorado blocked traffic during a protest in Denver on Friday afternoon. Organizers says they want to raise awareness about the recent killing of a prominent Ethiopian activist and musician.

(credit: CBS)

The shooting of 34-year-old Haacaaluu Hundeessaa sparked violent demonstrations in Ethiopia, killing at least 239 people.

Ethiopia’s attorney general says two people have been arrested in connection with the shooting and a third is on the run. The official says the two had confessed, claiming they had been instructed by a rebel group, the Oromo Liberation Army, with the goal of inciting anti-government emotions and causing tensions between Ethiopia’s largest ethnic groups, the Oromos and Amharas.

(credit: CBS)

The Oromo Community of Colorado disputes this claim from the attorney general and alleges the Ethiopian government is infringing on human rights by blocking phone and internet access in the country.

The military was deployed to protests in Ethiopia and the Oromia regional police commissioner says nearly 5,000 people have been arrested.

Protest organizers in Colorado say there are 2.5 million displaced Oromo’s around the world and more than 6,000 in Metro Denver. The Oromo Community of Colorado held a protest in Aurora last Friday where they blocked traffic to raise awareness about the unrest in Ethiopia.

(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)  

Audra Streetman

Comments (6)
  1. Enough is Enough says:

    I oppose what the oromos are doing because they have killed and maimed lots of people back in Ethiopia but shooting them is not the solution either. Only the truth & reconciliation is the solution. Mr. Alenby, just like the oromos, you have to remember that your ancestors came to the land of America one day in the past and they had needs back then that made them protest in the streets. How would you like it if someone in the streets said to them ‘they don’t matter to us’ ? I am sure you protested in the streets either in a strike for your union or a group you belong to, how would you like it if your audience said “you don’t matter” ? All lives matter.

  2. Jay Alenby says:

    Shoot the protesters. Ethiopa does not and should not matter to us. There are few misguided people trying to ruin our civilization. They must be put down.

  3. Enough is Enough says:

    I am sorry, this is getting ridiculous everyday. Ethiopia’s leader is an oromo, the killers of singer Hachalu Hundessa are oromo and the vicitims of Shashemene and Arsi were non-oromos.
    This is such a twisted mental state that these people are in and they want to cover their shame and deny the truth. You all go back home and face the truth. Get off the highway and let the working people go to work in peace. If you love and cooperate with other non-oromos, Ethiopia will be a peaceful country. This is all nothing but a power grab attempt for the group you support, OLF, the most violent terrorist group – par ISIS in Africa. Stop the joke and face the truth. Americans, check the facts and don’t be fooled by this charade.

  4. Hello, Thank you for covering this. However, the comments under this article are unfortunately very wrong and biased. “Hundreds, non-oromo ethnic civilians, have been brutally murdered in retaliation of the singer death” Today, the Ethiopian government released the death toll with the Oromos having the highest loss of innocent lives. Mostly due to the Ethiopian government and their brutal forces and anti-Oromo groups who are targeting anyone Oromo and peaceful protesters. Loss of any innocent life is a tragedy. We, the Oromo people, hope the world sees how corrupt the Ethiopian Prime minister and government as a whole really are. We also want the release of ALL POLITICAL PRISONERS (including US Citizens) who are being unjustly detained and tortured.

    Thank you and please reach out to the Oromo Community of Colorado for anymore details as needed.

  5. Asfaw says:

    Hachalu, we just found out, was assassinated by members of the same party which the protestors are supporting and carrying its logo or flag in this demonstration. They want the world to talk about how much the Oromos are having it bad after losing Hachalu, but the real sad story is the genocide that occured in most regions of Oromia in the aftermath. Hundreds, non-oromo ethnic civilians, have been brutally murdered in retaliation of the singer death as it was intentionally propagated by some media and individual bloggers that his killers were ‘neftegnas’ a name associated or given to members of the Amhara ethnic group. Listeners were urged to avenge his death by killing, maiming, and destroying the properties of the non-oromo civilians especially Amharas and Gurages. As mentioned above, hundreds have died in a very inhumane way; they were burned alive inside their homes, beheaded, cut to pieces, beaten to death, and dragged through the street by cars. The shutting of the internet in Ethiopia has not helped the real victims, the innocent civilians who had no idea why these atrocities have befallen them. And, this is what the demonstrators want to drown out, the genocide that is happening in Ethiopia, Oromia region.

  6. Johnny says:

    Dear Audra, just a suggestion: Hachalu was actually against some of the extremist groups like OLF (see the flag on your pictures) and we all knew that they will kill him at some point. Ask a government official in Ethiopia or representatives in north America before posting this one sided report. These are people who support terrorist and separatist groups like OLF, whose main aim is to kill non-ethnic oromos living in the oromia region. They did that as well, they killed more than 200 people from other ethnic groups and burnt their houses. Now the attorney General found out who killed the singer and still they don’t want to accept that. So they were using Hachalus killing as a ‘reason’ to kill others. Have you had asked the parents of Hachalu and the community living in Oromia, your story would look completely different. It is a shame to read such one sided news.

    Another suggestion: see what newspapers with a better access to information from Ethiopia are reporting, that will show you why your report is biased.


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