Thursday, April 06, 2006

It seems the DW guys have got their translation accurate. Could the change of language(at least) signal something serious happening behind the scene? Afterall, according to my US embassy sources Viki meets Meles at least twice in month.
US envoy says jailed Ethiopian opposition leaders must be freed
ADDIS ABABA (AFP) - The top US diplomat in Ethiopia said that opposition leaders and journalists accused of plotting a coup after deadly post-election violence last year must be freed to stabilize the country's volatile political situation.Vicky Huddleston, the charge d'affaires at the US embassy in Addis Ababa, called for dialogue between the government and the 111 figures who are now jailed and being tried on conspiracy and other charges, and said their freedom was essential to lasting stability."We remain very very concerned about the CUD leaders and the civil society (members) who are detained," she told reporters at a news conference, referring to Ethiopia's largest opposition party, the Coalition for Unity and Democracy."We feel that, in the end, their release is absolutely necessary to a reconciliation process," Huddleston said. "It can't go on like this, for this process both sides need to be ready to compromise.""To have a dialogue with all the opposition it is terribly important for the future of the country and it is certainly an objective and a priority of our government," she said.The 111, including nearly the entire CUD leadership, have been jailed since November after a second round of deadly violence rocked the capital and other cities during protests over disputed May 15 elections that the opposition claims were rigged.Their trial, in which some defendants could receive the death penalty on conviction, is due to start next month after numerous delays and government refusals to drop the most serious charges.Huddleston urged the government and the opposition to move quickly to resolve their differences, displaying a degree of frustration at the obstinance of both sides to compromise."We are now 39 days before a year after the elections, it is also five months since the riots in November and the tragedy that followed, I think it is now time to move forward and for commitment," she said."We would like to see more progress, better respect for human rights, a more professional security forces and faster movement so that the opposition parties feel that they are really listened to," Huddleston said.

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