(OPride) — A senior delegation of the Oromo Democratic Front (ODF) led by veteran Oromo leader, Leenco Lata, had been told to leave Ethiopia days after returning home to pursue peaceful struggle, the group said in a statement on Sunday.
“Regrettably, despite verbal overtures, no face-to-face talks could be held. Hence, our delegates had to return prematurely to Europe on the 22nd of March 2015,” the statement said. “This incident does not mark the end of the road but rather only the start of our efforts to ground our organization among our people in our country.”
Lata returned to Ethiopia on March 19, after more than two decades of exile to fight for Oromo rights within the existing political structure. Lata is one of the founders of OLF. He was dismissed from the party in 2013 over differences on the direction of the Oromo struggle. Lata then formed the Oromo Democratic Front (ODF) to try and return the struggle to the country.
In recent media interviews, Lata had indicated that his party has engaged with the Ethiopian government — directly and indirectly — for more than two years. But he decided to return to Ethiopia earlier this week because those talks were not progressing as hoped.
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