Monday June 25, 2018
Nairobi (HOL) – A highly controversial Ethiopian Colonel who enjoyed a lengthy career as Addis Ababa’s point man in Mogadishu has been dismissed by IGAD (Intergovernmental Authority on Development).
Col. Gebregziabher Alemseged, known to most Somalis as simply ‘General Gabre’ was sacked on Thursday from his position as a Senior Political Advisor to the Executive Secretary.
Colonel Gabre’s decades long involvement in Somalia began in 2006 when Ethiopian troops invaded Somalia to topple the ICU at the behest of their American financiers and with an invitation from then President Abdullahi Yusuf. Gabre was the highest ranking Ethiopian commander in Somalia and quickly used his influence to gain an audience within Somalia’s business and political circles, including UN agencies. Ethiopia’s use of indiscriminate shelling against civilian populations during the battle to dislodge ICU fighters from Mogadishu led to many Somali’s to accuse him being complicit in war crimes.
He remained involved in Somalia after the invasion by being employed by IGAD, first as Special Envoy of IGAD before being promoted to the Senior Political Advisor role he was just fired from.
Col. Gabre is generally disliked by Somalis for his perceived meddling into Somali affairs. Many view his presence in Somalia as a destabilizing factor working for Ethiopian interests.
Gol. Gabre’s sour reaction to President Farmajo’s surprise victory in last year’s presidential elections went viral. It was widely believed in Somalia’s political circles that Ethiopia spent significant political and financial capital on trying to get the incumbent Hassan Sheikh Mohamud re-elected.