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|Part of the conflicts in the Horn of Africa and Ethiopian civil conflict (2018-present)|
|Commanders and leaders|
Abdi Illey (POW)|
Mustafa Mohammed Omar
|Casualties and losses|
|200+ killed in total|
The Oromia-Somali clashes began in December 2016 following territorial disputes between Oromia region and Somali region's Government in Ethiopia. Hundreds of people were killed and more than 1.5 million people fled their homes.
Ethiopia has a federal political arrangement structured along ethno-linguistic lines. The Oromia Region is the largest and most populous state in the country and primarily consists of those of the Oromo ethnic group, the largest ethnic group in the country. Meanwhile, the Somali Region is the second largest state by area in the country and primarily consists of those of the Somali ethnic group.
This conflict is often viewed as a nomadic conflict with Somalis being mainly pastoralists, and Oromos tending to be farmers, as well as pastoralists. It has been difficult to demarcate clear borders between the states, as pastoral communities tend to cross borders in search for pasture for their animals. This has led to competition over the years, such as for wells and grazing land, with tens of thousands of people being displaced in conflicts.
In 2004, a referendum to decide on the fate of more than 420 Kebeles, the country's smallest administrative unit, saw 80% go to Oromia, leading to Somali minorities fleeing those areas. The Jarso population who resided in the region and have been under huge pressure and persecution by the Somali administration of the Somali Region, voted greatly to join the Oromo Region.
The current exacerbation of the conflict is speculated to be caused from competition arisen from a prolonged drought. From December 2016 at the border of the Oromia and Somali regions, the Oromia and Somali communities territorial tension boiled, notably near the town of Deka, leaving at least 30 people dead and more than 50,000 displaced. The Oromo claim that the area is their ancestral land and that the Somali families had been brought in from Ethiopian Somali regional. The situation escalated when the two communities' clansmen started revenge attacks. The clashes involved heavily armed men on both sides in locations all along the border. Schools were looted and civil servants were shot in their offices. Residents on the Oromo side also reported widespread rapes. The worst of the violence took place in the area around Negele Borana. More than 100 people died and thousands were displaced in February and March in the Negele area alone. Oromo activists have claimed much higher numbers.
On 20 April 2017 the Oromia and Somali states of Ethiopia have signed an agreement to peacefully solve disputes. Though in September 2017, clashes erupted killing hundreds of the Oromo ethnicity and some on Somali side.
On 15 December 2017, over 600 Somali civilians were killed by the Oromo militia. To this day, no Oromo has been held accountable for this massacre
In May 2018, four people were killed and 200 houses burned in clashes.
In July 2018, Oromo militias killed 50 Somalis.