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TPLF charges father & 3 sons with terrorism for bad-mouthing late dictator Meles Zenawi: Spirit of North Korea upon Ethiopia!

5 Jan

Posted by The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)

Court paper announcing the charges:

Credit ER

Credit ER

Ethiopian father and his 3 sons charged with terrorism for saying they are happy about Meles Zenaw’s death – court paper

The accused individuals are:

1. Geresu Chala
2. Tariku Geresu
3. Minalew Geresu
4. Binyam Geresu

Ethiopia: Journalism under anti-terrorism law

19 Mar

How the US ‘war on terror’ has provided cover for laws that are being used to silence dissident journalists

Tamerat Feyisa, editor of Addis Neger, Aljazeera

When the Paris-based media watchdog group, Reporters Without Borders released its annual Press Freedom Index, few were surprised that Ethiopia had dropped 11 places to 137.
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Ethiopia’s anti-terrorism law squelches opposition, activists say

6 Dec

By Blain Biset, IPS

ADDIS ABABA , Dec 6 2012 (IPS) – Ethiopia’s Anti-Terrorism Proclamation is once again stirring debate in this Horn of Africa nation as lawyer Temam Ababulga challenges the 2009 law in the highly-publicised “Muslim terrorism” case.
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Ethiopia in the US Country Reports on Terrorism for 2011

4 Aug


    The following is a full text of Ethiopia’s experience in implementing the anti-terrorism legislation in the country. The assessment by the United States of Ethiopia’s experience is reasonably correct.

    However, it is not clear if the US has used all its authority and influence on the Meles Zenawi regime to restrain it from using the legislation instead to curb political activism in the interest of democracy building and respect for fundamental human rights in the country.

    As the main push behind the adoption of the anti-terrorism legislation, for what we see from the worsening human rights situation and intensified repression in the country, there is little evidence to show that the United States has done enough.

    It could have done better to stop in good time application of the law to curb citizens’s rights in search of democracy, freedom and equality in a society that has increasingly institutionalized repression and inequality.

Legislation and Law Enforcement

Ethiopia’s National Intelligence and Security Service (NISS), with broad authority for intelligence, border security, and criminal investigation, is responsible for overall counterterrorism management. The Ethiopian Federal Police (EFP) worked in conjunction with NISS on counterterrorism.
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US deeply concerned by Meles’s court sentencing in Ant-Terrorism Trial

14 Jul

Statement provided by State Department

“The United States remains deeply concerned about the trial, conviction, and sentencing of Ethiopian journalist Eskinder Nega, as well as seven political opposition figures, under the country’s Anti-Terrorism Proclamation. The sentences handed down today, including 18 years for Eskinder and life imprisonment for the opposition leader Andualem Arage, are extremely harsh and reinforce our serious questions about the politicized use of Ethiopia’s anti-terrorism law in this and other cases.

The Ethiopian government has used the Anti-Terrorism Proclamation to jail journalists and opposition party members for peacefully exercising their freedoms of expression and association. This practice raises serious concerns about the extent to which Ethiopians can rely upon their constitutionally guaranteed rights to afford the protection that is a fundamental element of a democratic society.

We reiterate our call for the Government of Ethiopia to stop stifling freedom of expression and we urge the release of those who have been imprisoned for exercising their human rights and fundamental freedoms.”

Transforming Ethiopia TE

Underlying Ethiopia’s naked imbalances between counter-terrorism and human rights

25 May

By Seble Teweldebirhan

In general, Ethiopians for the most part believe the judiciary is not on their side. Studies like Global Corruption Barometer by Transparency International indicates that the judiciary in Ethiopia is one of the most mistrusted and corrupt pillars of government. Unlike other states, from which Ethiopia copied its counter-terrorism laws, whose judiciary has public trust to a large degree, the system in Ethiopia is subject to denigration.

Seble Teweldebirhan is Addis Ababa based Reporter for

By Seble Teweldebirhan In these circumstances, the discretions under anti-terrorism law are open to abuse. Since the attitude is fairness and justice is not the guiding principles of the justice system, the public tends to view their interpretation as favoring whatever unjust intentions is behind the cases. The international human rights institutions, that claim to stand for the recognition of fundamental human rights, share this point of view.

Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch, Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ), all have openly criticized Ethiopia for adopting the anti-terrorism proclamation. The identity of those suspected for terrorism and arrested based on the law also gave this institutions a reason to take Ethiopia a regular destination for their condemnations.

Therefore, though the laws are a direct copy of the western countries, as the PM always says, the issue differs for Ethiopia. The suspicious relationship between the public and the judiciary system sets a series of questions on whatever measures taken by the system can be fair based on the anti-terrorism law. This outlook is strengthened by the fact that a major thrust of the anti-terrorism law has been on public figures, opposition leaders, and journalists. From the public point of view, it appears bizarre to picture these people as terrorists, and thus sustaining the old mistrust between the judiciary and the society. For these reasons, the anti-terrorism proclamation is viewed by many in the country as politically-motivated, and those arrested as prisoners of politics and consciousness.

Read the rest on Ezega

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