5:18 pm - Sunday June 16, 7647

United States expels Ethiopian Embassy gunman[ By Abebe Gellaw]

The United States has expelled the Ethiopian Embassy gunman who opened fire at peaceful protesters last Monday, Ethiopian embassy sources confirmed to the Ethiopian Satellite Television (ESAT).

Solomon Tadesse Gebreselassie, aka Wedi Woyni, who was the security chief at the embassy, was given 48 hours to leave the United States. Gebreselassie had diplomatic immunity.

It has now been confirmed that Mr. Gebreselassie has arrived in Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital. Airlines insiders told ESAT that the gunman took Ethiopian Airlines Flight ET501, on Wednesday, October 1, at 11:15 AM (EST) from Washington Dulles International Airport. The Boeing 777-200LR carrying Mr. Gebresellasie landed in Addis Ababa after a 12-hour direct flight on Thursday October 2, at 06:45 am local time.

Gebresellassie was captured in a dramatic video brandishing a gun and shooting at unarmed protesters. The U.S. Secret Service (USSS) had announced Monday that it had detained a suspect in connection with the shooting incident.

Nicole Mainor, a USSS spokesperson, declined to give updates to this reporter on the ongoing investigation and referred the matter to the State Department. The department indicated that there will be major updates in connection with the incident in the next few days.

State Department spokesperson, Jen Psaki, had said in a brief statement that the Department of State took the incident involving the use of firearm very seriously.

Ethiopian Embassy officials allegedly expressed displeasure with the ongoing investigation and body searches that law enforcement agents had conducted on Gebreselassie and a few other embassy staffers.

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