According to a statement by the Ethiopian Human Rights Council (EHRCO), three of their Human Rights Experts and one driver were illegally detained yesterday, January 5, 2023. Following complaints received by the Ethiopian Human Rights Council (EHRCO) from individuals whose houses had been demolished and evicted, EHRCO’s three human rights experts and one driver went to Alem Bank to investigate the complaint on January 5, 2023, and they are being held at Alemgena 02 Police Station. Ethiopian Human Rights Defenders is very concerned about the arbitrary arrest of human rights experts and urges the government for their immediate release. EHRDC also wants to recall the arrest of a legal expert and lawyer, as well as the human rights defender Ato Wendmu Ibsa, on December 20, 2022, at the Sabata Police Station.
International and regional human rights instruments clearly state that the government must not interfere with the civil and political rights of citizens and should rather create a favorable environment for their implementation. The FDRE constitution also has the same say. One of these crucial rights is freedom of speech, expression, and assembly. Human rights organizations have also the right to monitor and document the human rights situation of the country. It is no contention that these rights are even more important for journalists and Human Rights Defenders who directly and consistently engage in human rights work. Civil societies also play an important role in ensuring accountability and transparency through human rights investigation and reporting for better human rights realization and enjoyment. Arresting them is interfering with their human rights work and denying citizens’ human rights! EHRDC would like to call upon the Government of Ethiopia to give guarantee the right to freedom and physical integrity, particularly by putting an end to the harassment against human rights defenders working in Ethiopia.
Therefore EHRDC calls for;
- The immediate release of EHRCO Human Rights Experts and the Driver
- An end to the unlawful detention of human rights defenders in the country.
- To end the violations of the rights of journalists and HRDs and to bring all those responsible for the violations of the rights of journalists and human rights defenders