- East Africa
- Eritrea - Ethiopia - Somalia
- Conflicts - Governance
Ethiopia: Nowhere to hide for insurgent forces
At least 123 militiamen of the Ogaden National Liberation Front- the rebel forces fighting the Ethiopian government have been killed by Ethiopian army.
Around 200 ONLF rebels had landed on the Red Sea coast and were taken by truck to the Ethiopian border to wage war against the Ethiopian government.
Somaliland has declared its independence from the rest of Somalia, but ONLF rebels want a complete control of the Somali region of Ethiopia; and are fighting for self-determination of ethnic Somalis in eastern Ethiopia.
Conversely, President of the Somali region of Ethiopia Abdi Mohamoud Omar told reporters his forces encircled the ONLF rebels in the remote Maar Maar mountains, the border region between Somaliland, Ethiopia and Djibouti.
According to Abdi, a senior ONLF commander, known as Hassan Bossaso, was captured, and an additional 90 rebels are encircled and unless they [ONLF] surrender, further measures will be taken against them.
The ONLF have been fighting the Ethiopian government for control of the Somali-area of Ethiopia since the 1970s, and the Ethiopian government blames, Eritrea, for supporting the ONLF.
The ONLF wants self-determination for residents of Ethiopia’s Somali region, which is also known as Ogaden.
Even though the Ethiopian government signed peace agreements with various ONLF factions it has not ended its attack on the rebel factions.
The ONLF arrived in the disputed territory on Saturday by boat and then traveled overland to the border, and documents left behind by the militiamen gave their identity away.
But now about 90 of the armed group are surrounded in the mountainous region which borders Ethiopia and Djibouti.
Eritrea and Ethiopia have a long-running border dispute but Eritrea denies accusations that it has been training ONLF members.