Somalia declares ONLF not terrorist group, says rendition of leader to Ethiopia unlawful

Abdikarim Sheikh Muse, aka Qalbi Dhagah

ESAT News (November 20, 2017)

A Somali parliamentary inquiry found that the rendition to Ethiopia of a leader of the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) in August was unlawful. The Parliament also declared that the ONLF is not a “terrorist” organization.

The Ethiopian regime, which declared ONLF a terrorist organization, had sent its security forces to Mogadishu in August and brought Abdikarim Sheikh Muse, aka Qalbi Dhagah, to Ethiopia. Somalis at home and in the Diaspora condemned the act and called for their government to get to the bottom of what happened.

An inquiry by a task force formed by the Parliament found that a former Somali intelligence chief had provided the Ethiopians “flawed” information on Sheikh Muse saying the ONLF leader “has posed a serious security threat to the country’s security in general and that of neighboring states,” according to a local media report.

The report concluded that the rebel group, ONLF, is not a terrorist organization. But it said that the government should not allow an armed group to operate in the country to threaten the security of a neighboring country, according to the report.

In the course of the proceeding, 152 lawmakers voted in favor of the panel’s final report, 6 lawmakers rejected while 3 abstained.

The ONLF has been fighting successive Ethiopian regimes since the early 80s and believes the regimes in Addis Ababa discriminate the Somali speaking Ethiopians.