The leaders of Gambella People’s Liberation Movement (GPLM), a rebel group in Ethiopia, have renounced armed struggle and resolved to embrace the peaceful struggle.
They returned from their base in Eritrea after renouncing armed struggle.
The group in the Gambela Region in Ethiopia was founded by Anuak dissidents during the Derg and Woyane regime.
The organization remained dominated by Anuaks.
The GPLM emerged from one faction of the erstwhile Gambela Liberation Front (GLF).
The group that would form the GPLM were supported by the Sudanese government and linked to the Oromo Liberation Front.
The faction took the name GPLM in 1985 with its guerillas operating from a bases in Sudan.
At the time of its founding, the GPLM had the stated objective of liberating Gambela from domination by Highlanders (i.e. Amharic, Tigrinya and Oromo peoples).
Upon arrival at the Gambella airport on Monday, they were received by Chief Administrator of the Gambella regional state Omot Ojulu, senior officials of the regional state as well as supporters of the movement.
According to Okello Okidi, Chairman of GPLM, the movement has returned home to engage in a peaceful struggle by taking advantage of the peace in the country.
Chief of Gambella regional state, Omot Ojulu for his part appreciated GPLM’s decision to return home to engage in peaceful political activities.
He also highlighted the need to work for the all-round development of the regional state regardless of political differences.
The Gambela People’s Liberation Movement is one of several groups that had been engaged in armed struggle from their bases in Eritrea.