In Ethiopia, hundreds of students and young people are reported to have been murdered by troops and peasants in the capital, Addis Ababa, last weekend (30 April/1 May).
GV PAN Crowd in stadium, Addis Ababa
SV PAN Head of State, Lt. Colonel Mengistu Haile Mariam walks with armed escort to speaker's platform
SV Newsmen film as Mengistu speaks (2 shots)
SV Troops and police listen (2 shots)
GV Crowd listen and chant
TOP VIEW PAN FROM Flags and banners at the head of procession TO armed guards watching procession and crowd
SV Militia men with wooden mortars and rifles, drilling
SEMI TOP VIEW Hammer and sickle banners and portraits of Lenin and Stalin carried in procession
LV "Yankee Go Home" banner carried in procession
TOP VIEW Mass crowd in procession
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Background: In Ethiopia, hundreds of students and young people are reported to have been murdered by troops and peasants in the capital, Addis Ababa, last weekend (30 April/1 May). Diplomatic sources quoted by the British Guardian newspaper said that up to 500 people were killed. Students accused of distributing anti-government leaflets were rounded up and many were later shot in cold blood, they said. Ethiopia's Head of State, Lieutenant-Colonel Mengistu Haile Mariam, is now reported to be in Moscow on an official visit. Shortly after the massacre he addressed a huge May Day rally in the capital.
President Carter recently (28 April) stopped all arms deliveries to Ethiopia following the Addis Ababa government's action, according to government sources quoted by Reuter news agency. They said that the left-wing military government would probably ask the Soviet Union to make up any deficit caused by the U.S. arms cancellations. The U.S. has until now been Ethiopia's main arms supplier.
SYNOPSIS: There were few similarities with the usual type of May Day worker's celebration. This was more a mass display of support for the government and a platform for the Ethiopian strongman. A countrywide campaign to crush anti-government opposition is now gathering increasing momentum.
Armed guards were never far away from Colonel Mengistu at the rally. The crowd heard him accuse Sudan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia of fuelling invasion plans against Ethiopia. The object of the plans was to bring the Red Sea under their control, he said. Secessionist guerrillas have been scoring considerable success against government forces in the Red Sea province of Eritrea. Colonel Mengistu declared that the broad masses of Ethiopa were now poised to repel imperialist and reactionary armed Arab intervention to dismember Eritrea.
A peasant army numbering tens of thousands is reported by the Guardian newspaper to be gathering in the northern part of the country. The report says that the military is expected to use this ragged force in a people's war to crush both the Eritrean secessionist movement and other internal opposition.
The rally included a display of drilling by militia men with wooden weapons.
Portraits of both Lenin and Stalin were carried in the procession, a timely show of sympathy for the Soviet Union in view of Colonel Mengistu's Moscow visit.
Anti-United States feeling was also clearly shown. Relations between the countries have rapidly worsened since the Ethiopian government's decision to close down most American facilities in Addis Ababa.