by elias. September 16, 2015
The secretive regimes of Woyanne and Shabia are not telling us the whole story about the alleged defection of TPDM chairman Mola Asgedom and hundreds of his men. The following is what had really transpired, according to EthiopianReview.com sources.
1. Over a year ago a plan was hatched by Woyanne and an element of Shabia military to kidnap or assassinate Ethiopian opposition leaders in Eritrea, including Berhanu Nega, Mola Asgedom, and others. It is the same group that masterminded the abduction of Ginbot 7 General Secretary Andargachew Tsige from an international airport in Yemen. They came up with a plan to lure Berhanu Nega and other Ginbot 7 leaders to come to Eritrea with a promise of leading a coalition of Ethiopian opposition groups (and perhaps with a little nudge and push by the U.S. Gov’t). Former head of Derg’s Key Kokeb Campaign, Shaleqa Dawit Woldegiorgis, who has been a very close friend of Isaias Afwerki ever since he defected from Ethiopia, gave Berhanu Nega and Ephrem Madebo personal assurances for their safety. 2. Over the past couple of years, Woyanne had succeeded in having its agents installed at key leadership positions inside TPDM with the help of a faction of Shabia military that is allied with Woyanne. Communications between Woyanne and its agents inside TPDM were made via this group of Shabia officers. 3. A New Year party was planned by the Tigray People’s Democratic Movement (TPDM) in Tesseney, Eritrea. All executive committee members of the four organizations that recently created a coalition were all invited. Dr Berhanu Nega, the main target, and his comrades, were scheduled to arrive Friday afternoon. Mola Asgedom, chairman of TPDM, who rarely leaves Asmara, arrived at the camp Thursday to play the role of official host of the party. 3. On Friday, Ethiopian New Year’s eve, just a few hours before the plan was to be put into action, it was uncovered by the Shabia intelligence and a special commando unit headed to Tesseney to thwart it. 4. The plotters found out that their plan was uncovered and decided to execute the mission without Berhanu Nega who had not arrived in Teseney yet. Assisted by their Shabia allies, they kidnapped Mola Asgedom and headed to Humera in 3 groups. At the outskirts of Omahjer (about 5 kms from Humera), Shabia forces were waiting for them. One of the three groups exchanged gunfire with the Shabia forces and and pinned down while the remaining two groups holding Mola Asgedom turned left and headed for the Sudanese border. They met resistance from Shabia soldiers there, too, but they easily over powered them and entered Sudan. The other group also fought its way to Sudan, sustaining several casualties. 5. As soon as the TPDM forces arrived in Sudan, Woyanne immediately took Mola Asgedom to debrief him and instruct him to say exactly what they want him to say or else face execution. He complied and presented himself as the leader of the operation. 6. The various Woyanne infiltrators who were given key leadership positions inside TPDM gave orders to the remaining fighters to head for the nearest Sudanese and Tigray borders in small units. The TPDM army thus melted away. Without the help of powerful elements in the Shabia military, such a mission involving several hundred people would have been unthinkable in Eritrea. A very critical development that has been given less attention is that the infiltrators were able to dissolve the entire TPDM army over night. Such things do not happen in Eritrea without the active participation of some powerful members of the Eritrean ruling junta. Mola Asgedom had never been part of the plot. He was himself the target, according to our sources. The whole mission was planned and carried out by specially trained Woyanne agents (perhaps trained by U.S. special forces at Camp Gilbert in Dire Dawa). They were able to infiltrate TPDM with the help of Shabia officers. As Mola Asgedom himself explained, he used to live like a king in Asmara. Even Shabia senior leaders do not live as luxuriously as he did. He was one of Isaias Afwerki’s most trusted lieutenants. TPDM troops were Isaias Afwerki’s special forces. They are hated by the Eritrean people. The claim by ESAT and others that Mola defected because he was not made chairman of the new coalition is baseless. Mola had more power than even some of Shabia senior military figures, let alone leaders of the toothless Eritrea-based Ethiopian opposition. Despite what we heard over the past few days, Mola Asgedom did not defect. He was kidnapped. Berhanu Nega and his two comrades, Neamin Zeleke and Ephrem Madebo, were lucky this time.