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The Ministry of Defense has plans to construct a national memorial dedicated to soldiers who lost their lives fighting on various battlefronts over the years.

The ‘Unidentified Soldiers’ memorial project is in the works by the Ministry’s department of heritage research, led by Brigadier General Desalegn Gatchee. He told The Reporter that his office has begun gathering data and conducting research to bring this project to fruition.

He disclosed the establishment of an independent task force to oversee the project.

“Recently, we convened experts from the Ministry of Tourism, Heritage Research and Protection Authority, and various institutions for a workshop and discussion,” said Desalegn. “We’ve reached a consensus on the proposal to construct a permanent resting place for the National Heroes’ Memorial.”

He told The Reporter that research and field observations for the project began this week. National memorials for fallen heroes will be established in Addis Ababa and all major towns and cities, particularly those hosting military bases, according to the Brigadier General.

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“The Ministry of Defense has validated the expertise of antiquity specialists,” he said. “Given the Ministry’s authority to establish policy and legal frameworks, we will develop a comprehensive guiding platform. This platform will facilitate our research efforts, incorporating a survey to gather best practices from other nations and involving veteran soldiers in the project.”

The Adwa Memorial Museum was recently constructed and opened in Addis Ababa’s Piassa area. However, the ongoing debate about properly honoring and commemorating the fallen martyrs in various battles—both against foreign invaders and in other conflicts—remains unresolved.

The lack of consensus in Ethiopia regarding national heroes, holidays, and historical narratives is often ignored. Nonetheless, heads of the Ministry hope to see the new monument dedicated to the fallen heroes address this issue and foster a sense of national unity.

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