Setting a social reform agenda : the peacebuilding dimension of the Rights Movement of the Ethiopian muslims diaspora
Feyissa, Dereje (2011). Setting a social reform agenda : the peacebuilding dimension of the Rights Movement of the Ethiopian muslims diaspora. University of Jyväskylä, Diaspeace Project. - (Diaspeace working paper. ISSN 1798-1689 ; No. 9).
Published inDiaspeace working paper
Introduction: This working paper examines the impact of the Ethiopian Muslims in the diaspora on socio-political processes in the homeland, with a special focus on their activities that have a bearing on peace-building. Within the DIASPEACE the research project falls within Working Package 3 (WP3) that focuses on the economic, social and political remittances of the diaspora from the Horn of Africa in Europe to their respective homelands. Ethiopia has one of the largest diaspora populations in the world. The exact number of the Ethiopian diaspora is not yet known, but it is widely believed that over half a million Ethiopians live in North America and Europe (Lyons 2006). The Ethiopian diaspora remittance in 2010 was estimated at 387 million USD (World Bank 2010). The push factor for many of the Ethiopian diaspora was the violent political conflicts of the 1970s, when the military socialist government (Derg) ruthlessly suppressed political organizations that called for political change. Squeezed out of the homeland political space, the Ethiopians in the diaspora had contested the totalitarian state from afar. Apart from the economic remittances - crucial in sustaining families during the economic deprivations under the strenuous planned socialist economy - the diaspora actively funded rebel groups at home. The Tigrean People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), the dominant political organization within the ruling Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), had a strong diaspora backing during its armed struggle against the Derg in the 1980s. [Continues] ...