Eritrean Swedish Activist Ermias Tekie Still Missing In Ethiopia

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By Angesom Teklu, July 5, 2018

In the midst of the swift political changes that are sweeping Ethiopia, where thousands of political prisoners getting freed, another person remains forgotten? A young pro-democracy activist from Eritrea was taken from his hotel in Ethiopia’s capital Addis Ababa and his where about is unknown.

On July 2, 2018 Radio Erena, an independent voice for Eritrea based on France reported the following: (author’s translation)

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UPDATED: One of the active justice seekers, an Eritrean-Swedish dual citizen is missing in Addis Ababa

Radio Erena: 02 July 2018

The family of Ermias Tekie, an Eritrean-Swedish dual citizen and one of the active justice seekers, has informed Radio Erena that his whereabouts in Addis Ababa remains unknown from May 21 until this day.

Ermias, a young person in his mid-30’s entered Addis Ababa on May 4th and then being taken from his hotel by unidentified people on May 21st and went missing.

His family has informed firstly, the Ethiopian police and then the Swedish embassy and ministry of foreign affairs but they didn’t receive a clear answer until now.

According to rumors Ermias, one of those who has been involved in bring democratic change in Eritrea, is being held by the Ethiopian government, for unclear reasons.

His family, acquaintances and many justice seekers are urging; if Ermias is being accused by anything and held by the Ethiopian government he should follow a legal procedure and appear in court.

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The New Ethiopian Prime minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed has promised the  rule of law in his speeches as he said “The law is not something those of us with power and guns use to force our will on others. The law is something to be used to judge those who administer as well as those who are administered. It applies equally to the weak and powerful and both the powerful and the weak should equally believe in the [fairness] of the law. That is the way it should be. All are to be treated equally before the law.” (Translation is taken from http://almariam.com/).

Although PM Abiy is talking about Ethiopian citizens, the rule of law applies to everyone. So, if Ermias is accused under Ethiopia’s criminal code, he has the right to due process, a speedy and public trial, and other rights protected by Law.

PM Abiy has shown his willingness to release political prisoners and protect Ethiopian citizens from unlawful harm. We now demand him and his government to protect the rights of aliens in Ethiopia by investigating the issue of Ermias and provide answers to his family who have no idea of Ermias whereabouts.

Angesom Teklu is a citizen journalist from Eritrea.

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