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ONLF threatens to thwart Ethiopia’s oil deal with Petronas


26 July 2005


In response to the recently signed deal between Ethiopia and Malaysia’s national petroleum corporation, PETRONAS, to explore oil in Ogaden, whole SE Ethiopia, the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) issued a statement putting both countries on notice that it will thwart any exploration of natural resources in Ogaden as long as the inalienable right to self-determination of the people of Ogaden remains denied.



Ogaden comprises the entire southeastern region of Ethiopia, which is about the size of Britain, and is inhabited by exclusively ethnic Somalis. The ONLF has taken up arms and has been fighting for the right to self-determination of the people and region of Ogaden since early 90’s just like the current clique ruling Ethiopia (Woyané rebels then) when it was fighting for the same reason on behalf of the people and region of Tigrai.





Following is full text of the statement of the ONLF that was posted on Ogaden website:


O.N.L.F Statement on Malaysian Firm PETRONAS’ Oil Exploration in Ogaden (July 24 2005)

The Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) notes with grave concern recent reports that the Ethiopian government will soon issue an oil exploration license to the Malaysian owned
petroleum Nasional Bhd (PETRONAS) to search for crude oil in Ogaden. Petronas has been analyzing geological data from Ogaden since last year and is seeking an exploratory license following positive data results.

The ONLF wishes to make clear to PETRONAS and the Ethiopian government that so long as the people of Ogaden are denied their undeniable right to self-determination, the exploitation of natural resources in Ogaden for the benefit of the Ethiopian regime or any foreign firm will not be tolerated.

We call on PETRONAS to cease and desist from its activities in Ogaden until such time that a legitimate form of self-government exists in Ogaden. The ONLF wishes to make clear to PETRONAS that the Ethiopian government is not in effective control of Ogaden and therefore is in no position to be issuing licenses of any kind for natural resources exploration. We further wish to note that there is currently an armed conflict waging in Ogaden between Ethiopian troops and ONLF liberation forces resulting in an unsafe environment for any exploration to occur.

The ONLF also calls on the government of Malaysia to take note of the situation in Ogaden and encourage PETRONAS to cease activities until such time it is able to engage with the true representatives of the people of Ogaden.

Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF)

Source: July 24th 2005


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