This article provides a chronological analysis of the Oromo social movements that have contributed to the recent major political changes in Ethiopia. It draws on theories of nonviolent social movements, political defiance, and the transition approach of democratization in analyzing the chain of event that led to political changes in early 2018. This helps put the protests in perspective in terms of Ethiopia's political trajectory, explaining how youth activists have played a role in advancing the conditions for the transition to democracy, bringing together fragmented, rival political forces and social groups in the interest of challenging the status quo and toppling a deeply entrenched authoritarian regime.

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