September 21, 2021
This letter is written with great admiration for your many years of outstanding service to our country. Your years of service in our country’s Foreign Service, and many other posts, important and vital ones, make President Biden’s choice of you as our Ambassador to the United States Mission to the United Nations, a brilliant choice. Your experience with so many countries of the world, especially now, with so much unrest, and with the added threat to our global environment from climate change, President Biden’s appointment of you, is especially important in these turbulent times, Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield.
But this letter also has another purpose. It is being written with a heavy heart, a heart filled with sadness, sadness for the people, the children of Tigray, the north of Ethiopia. Last November 4, 2020, the Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Abiy Ahmed, started the war that enveloped Tigray. Tigray only wanted to remain independent. Because of this, Tigray’s people were surrounded by Ethiopian and Eritrean troops. Women were raped, people killed. Mekele was bombed. Access for aid—humanitarian help by aid organizations—was blocked. This is genocide, Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield. The people, the children of Tigray are starving. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in 2019. Just two years ago. Tragic.
Thirteen years ago, our daughter and son-in-law adopted a year old baby girl. She was born in the village of Wukro, Tigray. When our beloved granddaughter was six, our daughter started the search for our granddaughter’s birth mother. With the help of several connections across the globe, a young man was found who agreed to help in the search. He was successful. He found our granddaughter’s birth mother and half-sister, seven years older than our granddaughter. Through this happening, our daughter and the young man became close friends. He calls her Mom, she calls him Son. My husband and I are Nana and Papa. My husband and I help our daughter send funds to the young man, his wife, and two adorable young children, a little boy and a little girl. Also, the birth mother and sister. They all have become our African family. There is love and friendship between us.
And so, we are heartsick, worried. Terrified for their safety. And we are turning to you, Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield, and the United Nations to help the people of Tigray—bring a cease to the genocide. Allow the agencies of Humanitarian Aid to enter the country. Save Tigray.
Thank you, Ambassador Thomas-Greenfield.