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A Call for Ethiopia’s Salvation

From HIH Prince Ermias Sahle-Selassie Haile-Selassie

President of the Crown Council of Ethiopia

Victory of Adwa Day, የካቲት 22, 2016 (March 1, 2024)

Ethiopian Brothers and Sisters: We are at the pivotal point between a future of perpetual darkness, or a future of revived happiness, pride in our unique identities, and conscious of our historical role which makes us unique in a world in turmoil. We cannot sleep through this time, nor allow our fate to be decided by those who wish our destruction and would see our three millennia of striving at God’s hand become scattered, meaningless, and lost.

The fate of what we know as Ethiopia is now in your hands. Our hands: the joined hands of the Ethiopian peoples and the Crown of Ethiopia.

Beloved Ethiopia! Beloved Ethiopians! Today we raise our prayers in thanks for the great victory of Adwa, delivered to us 128 years ago by Emperor Menelik II and Empress Taitu Betul and the united Ethiopian People against the first Italian invasion. The Crown Council struggled for decades to have the great, unifying Victory of Adwa officially recognized and memorialized, and our efforts proved impossible to ignore. The Ethiopian People are thus restoring their memory and their identity. To lose our way again would prove fatal. Our prayers similarly thank the Almighty for the great victory 83 years ago by Emperor Haile Selassie I and the united Ethiopian People — the Arbegnoch, the Patriots — against the second Italian invasion.

But today our prayers are also prayers of anguish, trauma, and supplication for deliverance and guidance in dealing a threat which may end the unbroken pride and identity — indeed, the very existence — of Ethiopia. It is a threat from within our great empire of equal peoples, and, yes, the current war which takes or brutalizes so many Ethiopian lives is either supported or ignored by so many of the world’s peoples. Left unremedied, this current war will transform our lands from a divine land of promise to a landscape of salted soil and perpetual sorrow.

The Crown of Ethiopia has endured, rebuilt, and strengthened since the coup a half-century ago saw not only the death of our beloved Emperor Haile Selassie but also the very deliberate killing of the great new Constitution which was to have delivered Ethiopia into a new age of freedom, democracy, opportunity, and guaranteed equality under the law.

Beloved Ethiopians! Those great emperors who gave us salvation at Adwa and Gondar are gone in body, but not in spirit. Nor are they gone from memory. Neither are they lost to us as inspiration. Thus they are alive, and the Solomonic Crown today pledges to work beside you all to resolve our present miseries and deliver safety, happiness, trust among our peoples, freedom to pray each in our own ways, and the restored prestige of Ethiopia as a light to the entire world.

If the tools to end our present tragedy are in our hands, then it is true that to take them up will require the humility of greatness to enable compromise and the leap of faith to rebuild trust.

There is no doubt that it will also require, as the guiding plan, the implementation of the ሐምሌ 30,  1966  (August 6, 1974, International Calendar: IC) draft Constitution, which would provide for the restoration of the legitimacy of Ethiopian governance as well as the restoration of the rule of democracy and safety under the law.

The Crown, embodied in the Crown Council of Ethiopia under the last legitimate Constitution of Ethiopia, is here to provide the bridge between the warring parties and to restore the peace of the family. It is not the Crown’s right, under the 1966 (1974 IC) Constitution, to interfere in the rights and duty of Ethiopians to elect their own parliament and government, but it is the Crown’s duty to protect the Constitution and the constitutional rights of Ethiopians. Therefore, we are available to help our warring society to resolve its differences by whatever means possible.

Beloved Ethiopians! It is a time for the great among our people to come forward and show their strength through compromise and obedience to the Almighty and to the larger destiny of the Ethiopian nation-state, and its sparkling component nations. It is a time for all Ethiopians to insist on the dignity, equality, and opportunity of all our peoples and to have justice before God and the world.

It is a time to return to our challenge of setting to the entire world, once again, an example of ethical and moral devotion. To become, once again, the noble state.