77th anniversary of victory over fascist Italy commemorated

Patriots Day
Photo credit : EBC

borkena
May 5, 2018

Ethiopians have commemorated the 77th anniversary of victory over invading Italian fascism. Italian forces came 40 years after a humiliating defeat at the battle of Adwa in 1896 which was caused by Italy’ ambition to colonize Ethiopia.

Ethiopian patriots waged a relentless and brave guerrilla warfare for five years against well-armed Mussolini forces before they raised the Ethiopian flag again on this day – the very same flag that the “Ethiopian government outlawed constitutionally.”

Nearly one million Ethiopians were killed during the five years of Italian occupation. At some point, Italian fascism killed thirty thousand Ethiopians in the capital Addis Ababa following after Italian military General Graziani was wounded in a grenade attack thrown by Ethiopian patriots.

Ethiopia’s last emperor, Hailesellasie I, also arrived from exile on this day. He was based in London leading the diplomatic campaign for the struggle against Fascism.

The celebration of Ethiopian patriots and their heroic struggle has been trivialized under the current administration until very recently. What was rather glorified, until the past few years, in the last twenty-seven years is Tigray People’s Liberation Front guerrilla forces triumph following the collapse of Colonel Mengistu Hailemariam’s government.

Ethiopians outside the country are also celebrating the day.

Teshome Mulatu, president of the country, attended the ceremony at Arat Kilo, where a statue in commemoration of the victory is erected.

Prime minister Abiy Ahmed skipped the ceremony to travel to Bale Goba for a visit.



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