A group of concerned Ethiopians in the Washington DC area have created an organization named FREE MEDIA FOR ETHIOPIA and one of their first actions is to hold a hunger strike. The following is their press release.
Hunger strike for free press in Ethiopia: Washington D.C. August 17-19, 2012 — Starting from Friday 12:00 AM to Monday 12:00 AM
Free Media for Ethiopia will be giving up everything for something we care about. We will be living in the same conditions as the people we’re fighting for. Free Media for Ethiopia is willingly abstaining from the necessities of life for 72 hours. A hunger strike will be organized to take place at Lafayette Square for the right to free speech and free press for a country that so desperately needs it. This demonstration is being held to fight the government that blatantly disregards these basic human rights.
We are used to living in a world where access to information is almost instant, but Ethiopians live in a world where information is literally fabricated and fed to the people as truth. Many social media outlets that keep Ethiopian people up to date with global current events are being blocked by the government. They have come up with an incredibly effective way to oppress the people by keeping them in the dark. Journalists that try to uncover the truth and report it to the people are sent to jail because those truths are usually harmful to the image of politicians. These tyrants have resorted to increasingly excessive violent behavior to cling onto their power and they must be stopped. This government claims itself to be a federal democratic republic, but what kind of democracy imprisons people purely on the basis of being honest?
The ultimate vision of Free Media for Ethiopia is to see free flow of information and freedom of expression which is free from influence of interest groups and or political entities. The right to speak freely is something most of us take for granted, but it is a vital part of a flourishing society. Criminalizing it forces individuals to bottle up their opinions and the people that assume power go unchecked and aren’t held accountable for their actions. At this very moment free media is asking for the release of the many journalists that are suffering for speaking their minds and pointing out injustices notably Eskinder Nega and many more. We are fighting for the voices that cannot be heard.
This is a public event and anyone is welcome to participate.
More info: http://www.facebook.com/Free.Media.for.Ethiopia