Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Millennium Challenge Series#28: The pandemics of Male Violence at Home and the community- the Horn Crisis

Dear Patriotic Ethiopians and Friends of Ethiopia:

Male Violence is becoming Pandemic
Re: Millennium Challenge Series #28: The Pandemics of Male Violence at home and the community! the new crisis in the Horn

This week has been a very sad story in the University Campus of Virginia Tech here in the United States where a disgruntled male of Asian descent murdered upto 32 people and wounded a significant number of people.

This raises a fundamental question. Is the male ego and self image so bruised that males in general and young adolescent males in particular are prepared to end their lives and the lives of many others.

The recent US attacks by the Muslims of Arabian land were all males. The subsequent Irag and Afghanistan and US fiasco is by and large managed by young males full of testosterone and being organized by older males with diminishing testosterone.

The whole war on terror is being organized by males with diminishing testosterone be it Generals, Mulahs and elderly war lords, where as the real suicide and massacre is being orchestrated and made operational by younger rather restless males.

Is this really a male crisis. The Horn of Africa is having its share of this violence at home and in the community.

As a human race we have to address this misplaced male agression. I have the following questions for all our readers.

I would like to raise a fundamental question: There is too much domestic and community violence perpetrated by males in the Horn. Is this due to too much testosterone? Diminishing producctive male roles in the 21st century? Or is this a sociocultural deterioration that needs immediate attention.

Ethiopian males are abusing the female populations, Somali males are busy fighting over any thing and every thing. The Somaliand and Puntaland Fiasco is rather interesting.

I look for a serious and scientific response that is supported with evidence and foresight.

Please read the following news from the Horn

with regards and seeking your intelligent response;

Dr B H J Aba-Jegna

1. 1.http://www.ssinformer.com/news/Africa/eastern/ethiopia/politics/2007/april/etp_13_04_07_001.html

2. http://www.shabelle.net/news/ne2745.htm

x. http://www.irinnews.org/Report.aspx?ReportId=71575

Source: Sub-Saharan Informer, Africa-wide daily published simultaneously in Ethiopia Djibouti, Uganda, Kenya, Somaliland, Ghana, Tanzanina and Sudan.
1. Court drops charges of treason and attempt to genocide

April 13, 2007

Simegnish Yekoye

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia - Ethiopian court dropped two serious charges of attempted genocide and treason against Ethiopian opposition party leaders, journalists and civil association defendants on Monday. The court has also freed 25 defendants among whom eight are journalists and newspaper publishers.
According to the two judges, Adil Mohammod and Mohammod Ahmed Samin, after looking at the case the prosecutor built against the defendants, they have not found any sufficient grounds for treason or genocide committed by the defendants.

However, the third judge, Leuel G/Mariam, was against the decision and it was with a majority vote that the charges were dropped.
Though the released prisoners could not be immediately available for interviews, SSI has learnt that they were freed on Tuesday following the court order.
Council members of Coalition for Unity and Democracy, CUD party and other defendants on the other hand, were ordered to defend themselves against the charges of conspiracy, instigating a nationwide strike and violence, attempting to raise armed uprising to overthrow government and impairing the defensive power of the state when a threat of war with Eritrea was eminent.

Out of 131 defendants originally charged by the prosecutor, 46 have been released so far.

Though the defendants asked the judge to be allowed to discuss together on whether they needed to defend themselves or not, the judge did not respond and simply adjourned the court for April 30, 2007.


2. Somaliland and Puntland troops face off in Harad, north Somalia

Aweys Osman Yusuf

Mogadishu 16, April.07 ( Sh.M.Network) The semiautonomous regional authority of Puntland claimed it recaptured the controversial settlement of Harad in Sanag province, northwest Somalia, where troops of Puntland and troops of the secessionist government of Somaliland battled in the past week.

Farhan Ali Guled, Puntland presidential minister, told stringers in Puntland yesterday that troops from Puntland re-seized Dahar, alleging that Somaliland troops lost in the battle.

He said, “We burned three of the enemy military vehicles and seized number of prisoners.”

On the contrary, Ahmed Haji Dahir, Somaliland information minister, told Shabelle early Sunday by phone from Hargeysa, the capital city of Somaliland, that the skirmishes which took place between the troops of Somaliland and those of Puntland occurred somewhere 10 km north of Dahar where both sides were challenging over the ownership of the settlement in the past years.

The minister claimed that his government troops crashed those of Puntland. “Our troops seized several pickup trucks mounted with anti-aircraft guns and prisoners. Somaliland troops have also killed number of the enemy soldiers,” he said.

Somaliland announced it broke away from the rest of Somalia in 1991 but failed to gain the UN and international recognition.

Despite the standoff and gun battles in the area, heavy rains have been reported in Dahar. The rain caused both rival soldiers to discontinue fighting as hundreds of civilians reportedly fled the war zone.

There are no independent confirmations of their victory claims.


3. ETHIOPIA: New strategy to tackle reproductive health issues

Photo: IRIN/Anthony Mitchell
Ethiopian girls who were victims of abduction in Arsi
ADDIS ABABA, 12 April 2007 (IRIN) - Ethiopia has launched a national strategy on adolescent and reproductive health that aims to tackle the problems of early marriages and pregnancies, female circumcision, abduction and rape, and poor access to healthcare for 10- to 24-year-olds.

Launched by the health ministry in collaboration with United Nations agencies on Tuesday, the Adolescent and Youth Reproductive Health Strategy (AYRH) will be implemented over eight years.

"Although adolescence generally is a healthy period of life, many are often less informed, less experienced, and less comfortable accessing HIV/AIDS and sexual and reproductive health information and services," Monique Rakotomalala, country representative of the UN Population Fund (UNFPA) said.

Health minister, Tedros Adhanom, said the strategy reflected his government's commitment to improving the reproductive health status of young Ethiopians.

According to the AYRH document, young people aged 15 and below constitute 40 percent of Ethiopia's 77 million people. "This strategy calls for immediate tailored and targeted interventions to meet the diverse needs and realities of young people," it noted.

Saying most Ethiopian young married women have limited autonomy and control over their resources, the report said only half of married adolescents can actually decide how their own earnings will be used.

On harmful practices, it noted that abduction and early marriages were declining but still persistent. The report cites the 2005 Ethiopian Demographic Health Survey which showed that 80 percent of women and half of men believed that there were situations when a husband was justified in beating his wife.

Another widespread issue was female genital mutilation. More than half of 15- to 19-year-old girls had been circumcised. Although support for this harmful practice was declining, about a quarter of 15- to 24-year-old girls believed it should continue.

The AYRH document noted that abduction was common, especially in Oromia and
southern regional states, and young women in rural areas were twice as likely to be abducted. Nationwide, many married women reported having been abducted for marriage.

Limited access to targeted reproductive healthcare and services for young people contributes to and exacerbates many of their reproductive health problems
Rape was common in both rural and urban areas. A study in six peri-urban areas found that 9 percent of sexually active adolescent girls and six percent of boys had suffered rape. Another study among street girls in the capital, Addis Ababa, found that 15 percent had experienced rape while 43 percent had been coerced into their first sexual activity.

"Limited access to targeted reproductive healthcare and services for young people contributes to and exacerbates many of their reproductive health problems," the AYRH noted.

The strategy document also details the problems of polygamy, early marriages and pregnancies, poor use of contraception and abortions. According to the ministry of health, abortion accounts for 60 percent of gynecological and almost 30 percent of all obstetric and gynecological admissions, it said.

"One of the most effective interventions to address rapid population growth is to empower people to make informed choices on their respective health including their desired fertility," the AYRH explained.

Rakotomalala explained that while the strategy would help adolescents to make informed choices, it recognised that their sexual and reproductive health needs distinctly differed from those of adults.

"The strategy is designed to segment the target population by their different demographic, socio-cultural, residential and economic characteristic," she said.

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