Tegbar slams trade mission to U.S. – IRIN

January 4th, 2001

NAIROBI, 4 January (IRIN) – The opposition Ethiopian Democratic Action League (EDAL, also called Tegbar) has described an upcoming Ethiopian trade mission to the US as a “mission of disinformation and deceit”. A high level trade delegation of the ruling Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) will be in Washington later this month.

According to the EDAL statement, the mission’s aim “is to cover up the biased economic development activities in favour of the Tigray region of three million people…at the expense of the rest of the country”.

The EDAL statement said the TPLF “owns and operates a multitude of businesses in manufacturing, services, trade, information and transportation”. “These businesses compete and often put out of business private enterprises,” it said.

Ethiopian embassy spokesman in Nairobi Mengistu Ayalew told IRIN that if such organisations were serious about helping Ethiopia and the Ethiopian people “they should contribute to such efforts to promote the country”.

“The composition of such missions is diverse and generally include members of the chamber of commerce, the business community and concerned ministries,” he added.