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Archive for the tag “Freedom”

UN Special Expert report of June 2017 reveals the hardships of the citizens in Eritrea!

The government of Eritrea is usually keeping it low-key and not telling their stories. The nation which has since liberation from Ethiopia since 1993. Therefore, the long-term stay of the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front (EPLF) and their President Isias Afwerki, who is still in power. His use of the power and keeping it all close, is the reason that the state of Eritrea is like it is. The oppression of their own citizens and total control. That is the reason for the fleeing Eritreans, as well as the military service and tight-control of the industries. It is all in service of the Central Leadership in Asmara. Which doesn’t concern the citizens, they are being used by the EPLF and their needs. Therefore, every time a United Nations report comes out, it reveals new aspects and shows by the admission of the diaspora who are telling the stories that needs to be told. Since the media, the government and all parts of society in Eritrea is silenced by the President Afwerki. Take a look!

Support of Al-Shabaab and North Korea:

In 2009, the United Nations Security Council imposed an arms embargo on Eritrea, primarily in response to Eritrea’s suspected support for Al Shabaab in Somalia. In its most recent report, the Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea stated that it had found no firm evidence of Eritrea’s support for Al Shabaab. It also described the use of Eritrean land, airspace and territorial waters by the Arab coalition supporting the anti-Houthi military campaign in Yemen, as well as the construction of a permanent military base at Assab International Airport and a new permanent seaport adjacent to it.3 In November 2016, the Security Council noted the finding about the lack of evidence pointing to Eritrean support for Al Shabaab, but expressed concern for ongoing Eritrean support for other regional armed groups and lack of cooperation with the Security Council; it extended the arms embargo on Eritrea” (…) “February 2017, the Panel of Experts supporting the Security Council Sanctions Committee on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) accused Eritrea of violating the arms embargo by buying military communications material from the DPRK. On 21 March 2017, the United States imposed sanctions pursuant to the Iran, North Korea, and Syria Nonproliferation Act (INKSNA) on the Eritrean Navy and any successor, subunit, or subsidiary thereof for prohibited transfer to or acquisition from DPRK of goods, services, or technology controlled under multilateral control lists” (Keetharuth, P: 5, 2017).

Arbitrary Arrests:

During the reporting period, the Special Rapporteur continued to receive reports of new cases of arbitrary arrest and detention. The reasons for the arrests appear to be those previously identified by the Commission of Inquiry, namely attempting to evade military service or trying to assist a family member in doing so; trying to leave the country; practicing an unauthorised religion; or offending a high-ranking Government or official of the People’s Front for Democracy and Justice, the sole political party in the country. The Special Rapporteur has received no official communication indicating that the Government has released arbitrarily detained prisoners or that it has provided information about the fate of high profile individuals subject to enforced disappearance” (Keetharuth, P: 6, 2017).

Food Supplies:

While some interlocutors told the Special Rapporteur that they had witnessed an active economic life during visits to Eritrea, with thriving markets and well-stocked shops, she heard from Eritreans in the diaspora that their relatives back home are struggling to meet their basic needs. While they confirmed the availability of food, they indicated that many households were unable to afford adequate and sufficient basic supplies, and were trying to cope with acute water shortages, especially in Asmara. As noted above, the recent UNICEF report confirmed this, indicating that half of the children are stunted. Reportedly, increasing numbers of people are leaving drought-affected regions in search of better living conditions. The ability to purchase food and other basic items has also been hampered by cash withdrawal limits which are still in place following the Nakfa currency exchange programme introduced by the Government at the end of 2015” (Keetharuth, P: 8, 2017).

Internet Freedom:

Since October 2016, reportedly, internet cafes must now require that customers register before being permitted to use the internet, allowing for the tracking of their browsing history. If confirmed, this new regulation would have an impact on the conduct of internet users and further restrict freedom of expression. In addition, frequent power cuts and very slow connections interfere with the use of internet” (Keetharuth, P: 8, 2017).

I think this things says a lot. The admissions and the connections to rouge elements prove the issues of Eritrea. This are just a few of them, there been more admissions in the past of the breaches of Human Rights, the lack of transparency and justice for the citizens. This proves the grand-issues of the Eritrean government and how they violate their own people. Peace.

Reference:

Keetharuth, Sheila B. – ‘A/HRC/35/39 – Eritrea’ (07.06.2017)

My letter to President Magufuli: seems like you need some love 2.0

Dear Sir, His Excellency (H.E.) President John Pombe Joseph Magufuli of the United Republic of Tanzania.

I am writing to you again, it strange how it comes to this. I wonder why it has turned to this. There was so much hope for you. You we’re a breath of fresh air, acted differently and seemed decent. Instead, the power has eaten your soul and you cannot handle critics or possible dossiers.

It seems like you have a little-man complex or power fatigue, as you expected to get showers of confetti and not get rainy days. I know it is weird, but life is usually what you serve it. If there are issues and corruption in the Mining Industry, it isn’t the tabloid paper Mawio, but it is the Mineral Extraction companies and civil servants who are corrupted. You should not have issues with the tabloid journalists in Mawio, they are just telling stories from Tanzania and from the different people that lives there. You should know this better than me, you are the Executive and running the Republic. Let’s take a brief look!

The Information minister Dr Harrison Mwakyembe imposed the 24-month ban through a statement released to the media by the Director of Information services Dr Hassan Abbasi on Thursday evening” (…) “I have been left with no other option than to use powers conferred to me by the Information Services Act to impose a ban on Mawio from publication for the next 24 months,” read part of the letter from the minister to Mawio editor” (…) “Mawio was accused of ignoring a government directive on reporting of the former presidents. On Wednesday, President John Magufuli warned the media against linking Mkapa and Kikwete to the government minerals dispute with mining giant Acacia” (The Citizen, 2017).

I know you must feel hurt… feel the pain and the sorrow of maybe being involved in possible mineral dispute like your previous peers. I know that the precious heart of yours must be shattered. That this Mawio tabloid paper wrote such a hideous story exposing the current president, you Magufuli are compered with them. It seems like you have lost your heart…

That your heart was shattered, that the deep sorrow are coming over you. Magufuli you need love and passion, as you have so little compassion. As a president your expected to get support and praise, but this is opposite. What Mawio wrote was maybe distasteful of your wished reputation, but if your connected and letting the government do similar as your predecessors. Shouldn’t that be informed by the media?

Seemingly, you are the President and your precious feelings are getting hurt so often. That the press are writing stories and revealing the government matters, which they shouldn’t in your opinion. Well, many would be to differ, especially when try to dig deep, like even a weekly tabloid Mavio did on Wednesday.

Someone needs to give you love, make it compassionate and be a caregiver to you. Since you cannot handle criticism and critic of any kind. As President and as Executive, you should have the heart, have the understanding and handle the media, as they are there to be part of the checks and balances of your work, President!

Your government are weak and pathetic if it cannot handle that a tabloid write stories about it. President Magufuli, I know you need love, lots of it. You need it so much, that if someone now writes against you and your government you hurt them. The Ministry of Information are suspending them on your accord.

Your usually gets what your hearts seeks. Your emotions seems to run a bit hot lately, as over the last few months… you have been hard on the media and journalists for so, so long!

Can someone please… for the love of god and everything holy, give the President some love. So that he can act like fellow brother and not as heinous totalitarian leader, not as the leader people expected you to be!

Best Regard

Writer of Minbane

Mawio Newspaper Suspended – United Republic of Tanzania – Statement in Swahili

Reference:

The Citizen – ‘Tanzania slaps 2-year ban on newspaper for linking Kikwete, Mkapa to mining row’ (16.06.2017) link: http://www.theeastafrican.co.ke/news/Tanzania-tabloid-banned-Magufuli-minerals/2558-3973200-37oyx/index.html

Bunyoro squabble: Besigye Rally blocked in Masindi!

As the Police has monitored and followed the moves of Forum for Democratic Change in Bunyoro, even standing guards around the compounds of the retreat that the FDC during the week. You can tell that the government does not spare a single shilling in the mind of keeping the FDC at bay. Clearly, the Police Force in Masindi was preoccupied with handling the matters and silencing the FDC. Not catching criminals, because that is not important in the Republic of Uganda. It is more important to count the steps and gasoline run by the White SUV of Dr. Kizza Besigye. Therefore, this shallow and truthful news coming from URN wasn’t that surprising considering how many times they have done it!

“The officials arrived at Masindi Stadium at around 5pm and agreed with police to conclude the rally within 30 minutes. Dr. Kiiza Besigye, the former FDC president addressed the residents and urged them to jealously guard their land from government officials who have turned to it for survival since they have stolen all the money for service delivery” (…) “Besigye ignored the directives and continued speaking leading to a heated verbal exchange between FDC party officials and heavily armed police personnel. As a result, Police threatened to use teargas prompting Besigye to cut short his speech and drive away with police patrol cars behind him. Waiswa told reporters that they couldn’t allow Besigye go beyond the allocated 30 minutes” (Ogga & Gucwaki, 2017).

So again, the Police Force has stopped a rally, another rally in the series of spreading the information of land grabbing and of making sure the citizens know their rights. That is deemed unfit and not the sort of subject the citizens need. Especially in districts close to the vast oil reserves, which the state intent to only to supplement the income of the President, not his fellow citizens. If it were, wouldn’t the new debt in the budgets be recovered sooner, instead of a Presidential Handshake?

Well, as state of affairs goes, the state continues to hamper with rallies of opposition, the police continue to vital part of politics, instead of fighting crime. The Police is more concerned with the moves of FDC and “Bad DP“, than of actual police work. The opposition are more often criminals, than the average chicken thief’s, just pound on that for a hot-moment. Certainly, it will be more chicken-soup and less chicken, boiled water on bones instead of flesh. Since, the Police Force cannot stop themselves from being political active. Their mandate under this administration is to subdue and silence the ones who does not comply with the vision of Museveni. Peace.

Reference:

Ogga, Thembo Kahungu Misairi & Gucwaki, Yosam – ‘POLICE STOP BESIGYE RALLY IN MASINDI’ (14.06.2017) – Uganda Radio Network – link: https://ugandaradionetwork.com/story/police-stops-besigye-rally-in-masindi

Joint NGO letter on Renewing the Mandate of the UN Special Rapporteur on the Situation of Human Rights in Eritrea (05.06.2017)

Geneva, 5 June 2017

RE: Renewing the mandate of the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Eritrea

Your Excellencies,

We, the undersigned civil society organisations, write to urge your delegation to co-sponsor a resolution renewing the mandate of the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Eritrea at the forthcoming 35th Session of the UN Human Rights Council. In view of the ongoing crimes under international law, including torture, enslavement and enforced disappearances, and violations of fundamental freedoms committed in Eritrea, the Special Rapporteur’s mandate remains an indispensable mechanism to advance the protection and promotion of human rights in Eritrea.

The mandate of the Special Rapporteur was established at the 20th UN Human Rights Council Session in 2012 to monitor the human rights situation in Eritrea. From June 2014-June 2016, the mandate was also represented on the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea (CoI). The mandate of the Special Rapporteur was extended in July 2016 to follow-up on the recommendations of the CoI. It has been instrumental in monitoring the dire situation on the ground, highlighting on-going violations and the failure to implement the recommendations of the CoI and in providing a crucial platform to help amplify the voices and concerns of victims.

The findings of the CoI and UN Special Rapporteur reveal that the Eritrean authorities have continued to impose a broad range of unwarranted restrictions on fundamental human rights, precipitating mass migration, including of unaccompanied children. Despite commitments by the State to reduce national service to 18 months, indefinite national service and forced labor persist throughout the country. [1] Persons who attempt to avoid military conscription, take refuge abroad, practice an unsanctioned religion, or who criticise government officials continue to be arrested and imprisoned for lengthy periods. [2]

The absence of an independent judiciary means that victims of these human rights violations have no recourse to justice at home. As a result, in Eritrea impunity persists and those who have been subjected to enforced disappearances remain unaccounted for.

In light of these concerns, we respectfully request your delegation to co-sponsor a resolution during the 35th UN HRC session that renews the mandate of the UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Eritrea, provides the mandate holder with all necessary support, and urges the Government of Eritrea to cooperate with the mandate holder including allowing unencumbered access to the country.

Sincerely,

Africa Monitors
Amnesty International
ARTICLE 19
Citizens for Democratic Rights in Eritrea
CIVICUS
Connection e.V
DefendDefenders (East and Horn of Africa Human Rights Defenders Project)
Eritrean Diaspora in East Africa
Eritrean Lowland League
Eritrean Law Society
Eritrea Focus
Eritrean Movement for Democracy and Human Rights
Eritreans for Human and Democratic Rights – UK
FIDH (International Federation for Human Rights)
Global Centre for the Responsibility to Protect
Human Rights Concern – Eritrea
Human Rights Watch
Information Forum For Eritrea
International Fellowship of Reconciliation
International Service for Human Rights
Network of Eritrean Women
PEN Eritrea
People for Peace in Africa
Release Eritrea
Reporters Without Borders
Stop Slavery in Eritrea Campaign
War Resisters International

The Calvary arrested Besigye and blocked the planned ‘My Land, My Life’ rallies in Isingiro!

It feels like we have been here before, the attempt of stopping democratic rallies that was planned to be hold in the district of Isingiro today. ‘My Land, My Life’, as he earlier in the day was taken by Police and assaulted out of his vehicle on the Kikagati-Isingiro border, close to the Isingiro district. He was taken by the Police into Ntungamo, where he was detained for the day. Dr. Kizza Besigye arrested while traveling to a rallies, seems like the pre-campaign period of 2015 are mentally back in the minds of the Police Force.

This is not the first neither the last time the police will violate his rights in might of the National Resistance Movement and the wonderful dictator President Yoweri Museveni, the grand peacemaker of Congo, Rwanda and South Sudan. But in his own home, he cannot even let a political advisory travel and hold rallies. Therefore, again he was taken without warrant, without warning and without care of safety.

Moses Muzima, the Isingiro District Police Commander, says they arrested the FDC officials for attempting to hold a rally in the market place and refugee settlement without police clearance” (Daily Monitor, 2017). We all saw that coming? The Public Order Management Act (POMA), the Anti-Besigye Act, the blessed gift of Parliament in 2013! The one used to silence the opposition and their rallies, whenever and wherever needed. So that the Police Force can assault and detain without any issues, not even use the Penal Codes or former colonial laws to arrest someone.

So the Police Force, together with Mambas, whole Police convoys was driving him home in Kasangati, as the whole day was in the hands of the Police. This all done without any issue of law or recognized criminal attempt of the opposition leader. Except for putting fear into the Movement and the Police Force loyal to him.

Yet, again the State doesn’t care about justice, freedom and liberty. There are clearly violations of these as the draconian law are now used to stop Dr. Kizza Besigye from campaigning for land reforms, as the land grabbing are happening rapidly. Peace.

Reference:

Daily Monitor – ‘Police arrest FDC leaders in Isingiro’ (15.05.2017) link: http://www.monitor.co.ug/News/National/Police-arrests-FDC-leaders-in-Isingiro/688334-3927742-r6ydoa/index.html

5th May 1941: Ethiopia liberated from Italy – Full Liberation Speech from H.I.M. Haile Selassie!

No human lips can express the gratitude which I feel to the merciful God who has enabled me to stand in your midst on this day, of which the angels in heaven and creatures on earth could neither have thought of nor known about. Before everything else, I want to tell you and to make you understand that this … is a day on which a fresh chapter of history of the New Ethiopia begins. In this new era, new work is commencing, which is the duty of all of us to perform.

As We remember the affliction which befell Ethiopia, which had preserved her independence for many thousand years, was attacked in 1888 E.C. (1895-6) by Italy, which had harbored aggressive designs against her for many years and intended to destroy her freedom, her brave sons fought at Adwa and she retained her independence. The Treaty of Wuchale was not the only cause of the battle that was fought at Adwa. It was only a pretext for the ongoing aim that Italy had of ruling Ethiopia. Although the Great European War interrupted her plans for a time, notwithstanding her outward pretensions of friendship, Italy made preparations to invade Ethiopia. Since her defeat at Adwa, she had been irate that justice prevailed against her.

When Italy began to wage a war of aggression against Ethiopia, although We knew We were not so well armed as she was, We countered with what strength We could muster, because it was Our duty to resist an enemy that had come to seize Our country. But as it was apparent that she was bent on exterminating Our people with poison gas, the use of which was prohibited by international law, We went to appeal to the League of Nations and claim justice. As it was feared that the hostility started by Italy might spread all over the world, and as it was a period when all those who were charged with the responsibility of government were trying to save the world for the catastrophe which has since befallen it, the [leaders] worked to bring about understanding in the world to prevent the spread of the conflagration. At the time our true friend, Great Britain, received Us with sympathy. I remained there working, but in spirit was constantly with my countrymen, whose blood was pointlessly and ruthlessly shed at the hands of the Italians; with the monasteries and churches that were being burned down; with those forced to take refuge in foreign lands; and with those suffering and being afflicted in the wilderness, in the caves and in the forests of their native land.

How many are the young men, the priests and monks whom the Italians pitilessly massacred during these years? You know that in Addis Abeba alone many thousands perished during the three days following St Michael’s day on Yekatit 12, 1929 [Feb. 19, 1937]. The blood and bones of those who were killed with spades and pickaxes, of those who were split with axes and hammered to death, pierced with bayonets, clubbed and stoned, of those who were burned alive in their homes with their little children, of those who perished of hunger and thirst in prison, have been crying for justice. Everybody knows that this act of barbarism and cruelty was not perpetrated in Addis Abeba alone, but [also] in the provinces of Ethiopia. There is hardly anyone who has not been caught and beaten, kicked, humiliated and imprisoned.

Now We shall pass on to the new history that is before Us. five years ago on this day the fascist forces entered Our capital city. Then Mussolini announced to the world that he had established a Roman Empire in Our country, Ethiopia. He believed that the land he declared conquered would forever be in his hands. The gallantry of the Ethiopia people is recorded in history. But as We had no ports through which to import armaments necessary for people, we were unable to obtain them. Fifty-two nations condemned Mussolini for his actions. But he boasted of his violent deeds and took no heed of their condemnation. The past five years have been years of darkness for you, my people. But you never lost hope, and in the Ethiopian hills you gradually grew [strong]. The enemy never ventured to come near the mountains on which you were, because, enduring every hardship and affliction, you, the warriors of Ethiopia, safeguarded your freedom during the past five years. But in spite of the fact that he could not conquer the country, he spent many thousands of millions of lire, saying that he was civilizing what he could hold. He spent all that money not because he desired to improve the conditions of the oppressed Ethiopian people or to mitigate the injustice he had done. It was because he wanted to plant a fascist colony in Our sacred land of Ethiopia and to impose on her the rule of oppression which he had planned. He tried to exterminate the Ethiopian race and did not even entertain the idea of giving her the administration of either a mandate or a protectorate, which, in any case, would have been considered a heavy yoke for Our people. But all the money that could be counted by the thousands of millions and all the prepared armaments served a purpose which Mussolini never intended. At the time when Italy revealed her intentions of entering the war in order to be able to snatch from a defeated France as much as she could, the number of soldiers, the amount of money and the armaments she had sent to Ethiopia were enormous. The regular troops she deployed were not less that 250 000, she also had amassed provisions to last many years in case she was encircled. Trusting in, and bragging of , the invincibility of this military force, the fascist government proceeded with implanting dictatorial rule in Our country. But something happened which the fascist government did not take into account–the fighting morale, essential in modern war, demonstrated by you.

You were able to destroy the enemy who were superior to you in numbers and equipment, because you are a people of bravery and mercy and because you cooperated and knew the strategy of war. The British troops, who were fighting for human rights on other fronts…needed time to get ready to come to the assistance of Ethiopia. and free her. But you, warriors of Ethiopia, harassed the enemy by cutting his communications [and] by restricting him to his fortifications. In spite of the great numbers of troops in which he put his trust, he realized that the Ethiopian people from one end [of the country] to the other hated him and his rule. He understood also that it was impossible for him to live in such a country and in the midst of such a people. Even by using poison gas and bombs and by [committing] atrocities. he could no longer hope to enjoy overlordship in a country where he was terrible undermined. He realized that the soldiers who surrounded him were adversaries more powerful than he was. He spent his daring and money to meet his adversaries. Then he looked around, if perchance he could find somewhere where he could take shelter in Ethiopia, but he could not find even one place.

When the time came, Our great ally, the British Government prepared to launch a proper attack against Our enemy. As soon as I knew this, I left for the distant land of the Sudan, which borders us the west, and entered central Gojam. In Gojam Our enemy had strong fortified positions, powerful troops, airplanes, and artillery. On comparing the number of Our soldiers with those of the enemy, We found that We had one soldier for every 20 of his. Moreover, We had no artillery or aircraft at Our disposal. The fact that I was found in the midst of my warriors at once attracted many thousands of men. And the fear and anxiety of Our enemy increased. While my soldiers were harassing and cutting off the enemy’s communications and , after having driven his troops across the Abay river, were pursuing them towards Shewa and Begemdir, I heard the good news that British Imperial troops had, with incomparable speed, retaken Our capital city and were pushing towards Dese in the north and Jima in the south. In the same way, the troops who started from the Sudan destroyed the fortress at Keren with brilliant force and utterly defeated the enemy. And as the time came for my return to my capital, I mustered my soldiers who were scattered in every direction in pursuit of the enemy… I am exceedingly happy that I have been able to arrive here at the head of my soldiers, the enemy who was found on my path having been defeated, and to break the power of the common foe. I am deeply thankful to Almighty God that I stand today in your midst in my Palace, from which the fascist government has fled.

People of my country, Ethiopia!

Today is a day in which Ethiopia is stretching her hands to God in joy and thanksgiving and revealing her happiness to her children.

This day , on which the people of Ethiopia are freed from the oppressive foreign yoke and eternal servitude and on which I am enabled to rejoin my people, whom I love and have yearned for, will be honored as a holiday to be commemorated annually as a Great Ethiopian Anniversary. On this day we shall remember those heroic warriors who, determined not to surrender the great charge passed on to them by their fathers, became martyrs, shedding their blood and breaking their bones for the freedom of the land they loved and for the honor of the Emperor and their flag. Their heroic deeds will remain recorded in Ethiopian history.

The tribulations and afflictions, which befell us during the past five years and which cannot be recounted and enumerated in detail, will be a great lesson to us all and, with industry, unity, cooperation and love engraved in your hearts, will be a great incentive to your to be my helpers in the construction of the Ethiopia which I have in mind. In the New Ethiopia I want you to be a people undivided and endowed with freedom and equality before the law.

You will have to join me in my efforts for the prosperity of the country, for the riches of the people, for the development of agriculture, commerce, education, learning, for the protection of the life and resources of Our people, and for the perfection, on modern lines, of the country’s administration.

It is my firm wish and purpose to merit the blessing with which God in His mercy has visited on Us, first, by showing Our gratitude to Our allies, the British, by the release of the Imperial troops to fight the common enemy on other fronts, and by supplying them with troops whenever they may be needed; secondly, to do work beneficial to the people and the country by establishing in Our Ethiopia a government which will protect Our nation and make it respectable by guaranteeing the liberty of the people and freedom of conscience.

What I would finally announce to you, my people, is that today is a day of rejoicing for us all. Today is the day on which we defeated our enemy. We shall see that our enemies are disarmed and sent out the same way they came. As St George who killed the dragon is the Patron Saint of our army as well as of our allies, let us unite with our allies in everlasting friendship and amity in order to be able to stand against the godless and cruel dragon which has newly risen and which is oppressing mankind. I charge you to consider [our allies] as brothers and friends [and] show them kindness and consideration.”

Eritrea must free prize winning journalist, says UN human rights expert (03.05.2017)

Mr. Isaak was arrested in September 2001 during a political crackdown on the so-called G-15, a group of politicians, and journalists critical of Government policies.

GENEVA, Switzerland, May 3, 2017 – The Government of Eritrea must free journalist Dawit Isaak who has been awarded a prestigious press freedom prize some 15 years after he was detained, a United Nations human rights expert says.

The Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in Eritrea, Sheila B. Keetharuth, is also calling on the authorities in Asmara to release unconditionally all others detained unlawfully.

“The Eritrean authorities should stop the practice of arrests and detention carried out without legal basis instantly,” said Ms. Keetharuth, welcoming the award of the UNESCO/Guillermo Cano World Press Freedom Prize 2017 to Mr. Isaak.

Dawit Isaak, who is 52 and a playwright, journalist and writer, moved to Sweden in 1987, where he later became a citizen. He returned to Eritrea only after independence in 1993 and was one of the founders and reporters of Setit, the first independent newspaper in the country.

Mr. Isaak was arrested in September 2001 during a political crackdown on the so-called G-15, a group of politicians, and journalists critical of Government policies. Some were detained and tortured, others disappeared. The last known sighting of Mr. Isaak was in 2005. His whereabouts now are unknown.

“The case of Mr. Isaak is emblematic of all those who have been subjected to enforced disappearances by the Government of Eritrea and remain unaccounted for,” said Ms. Keetharuth.

The Special Rapporteur recalled the findings of the UN Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea, which concluded that there were reasonable grounds to believe that Eritrean officials had committed crimes against humanity, including the crime of enforced disappearance, in a persistent, widespread and systematic manner since 1991.

“The Government of Eritrea has an obligation to urgently provide information on the fate and whereabouts of all those deprived of physical liberty. This would be a first and long-overdue indication that the Government is committed to rebuilding trust with the Eritrean people,” Ms. Keetharuth said.

“By allowing independent monitors immediate and unhindered access to all places of detention, official and unofficial, the Government would send a strong signal that it acknowledges human rights violations of the past, while taking steps to improve the situation on the ground now.
“The arrests of Dawit Isaak and his fellow journalists remain the most visible sign of repression of freedom of expression. The Eritrean authorities continue to stifle all forms of expression that could be perceived as critical of the Government and its policies,” she said.

Ms. Keetharuth reaffirmed that freedom of expression was a basic human right, and a free press one of the tenets of a democratic society, providing a valuable check on potential excesses by government.

Szlavik represents a Shady Company of Men: Polishing the image of Nkurunziza and Museveni!

Joseph Szlavik and his lobby firm in Washington D.C. are using his close-connected network in the Senate and the House, to trade secrets and interference of knowledge from not so favorable sources. The Scribe Strategies and Advisors are have certainly no scruples in their dealings. As the vast funding from Republic’s and their leadership. Proves that he can bought by anyone who opens their check-book. There is no story he cannot open and abuse, to make sure that his company earns fortunes.

Therefore, be aware that certain connected journalists has been touched by this lobbyist like the Sioban O’Grady, who has had interviews interconnected on several occasions during the last year. As well as Kevin Kelley in Daily Nation, who has been used as tools for the agenda of the Lobbying firm.

Promotes the cause of CNDD-FDD:

This lobbying company has a long history in Burundi, as they have wanted to retain the company as far back on 12 December 2005, when Minister of External Relations and International Cooperation Antoinette Batungbwira wrote a credible praise and wanted to extend their work together.

The government of Burundi, had the funds and the ability to push their agenda in Washington D.C. during the 2015-2016 as their noble lobbyist Joseph Szlavik, signed his earnings to the proper American authorities. On 10th November 2015, the CNDD-FDD paid the lobbyist $ 59,980.00, as he was also paid on the 5th February 2016 $ 60,000.00 and on 25th April 2016 $ 92,230.00. Also, his fees continued as on the 8th August 2016 got $ 90,000.00 and 19th December 2016 the total salary $ 60,000.00.

The lobbyist has during the 2 year period earned astonishing $ 362,000.00!

The CNDD-FDD could afford to pay a man to spread their message and play after their tune in the congress and senate! This shows the power of the monies, as the lobbyist himself explained his position and what he did to earn this amount of money: “Registrant (Scribe Strategies & Advisors) counseled and advised the Government of Burundi on U.S. Policy and informed congressional and executive branch officials and staff and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) on development in Burundi, and promoted relations between the United States and Burundi. Registrant provided public relations support and strategies to the Government of Burundi” (13.04.2017 – NSD/FARA Registration Unit).

Registrant (Scribe Strategies & Advisors) arranged for Foreign Minister Alain Nyamitwe to speak at the Atlantic Council on June 22, 2015 and on the VOA’s “Straight Talk Africa” on June 23, 2015, and Newsmax TV on June 24, 2015, about recent political developments in Burundi; arranged for presidential spokesman Willy Nyamitwe to speak to the Atlantic Council on January 22, 2016, and on the VOA’s “Straight Talk Africa” on January 20, 2016, and on France24 TV on January 21, 2016, all of the topic of the recent developments in Burundi” (03.03.2016 – NSD/FARA Registration Unit).

Promote the cause of the NRM:

The Government of Uganda and their Foreign Affairs has used the same man to pursuit their agenda in Washington D.C. as they paid the man on the 5th May 2016 $ 62,500.00. In 2015 they also paid him well for the help of spreading the message of Foreign Minster Kuteesa on the 24th June 2015 paid $ 55,200.00, also $ 69,800.00 on 7th August 2015 and on 9th December 2015 $ 64,535.11. The Government of Uganda totally paid the amount $ 250,000.00 to the lobbyist over 2 years!

Registrant (Scribe Strategies & Advisors) arranged for Foreign Minister Sam Kuteesa to appear on Voice of America program. “Straight Talk Africa” September 16, 2015; the topic was Kutesa’s tenure as President of the United States General Assembly; also arranged for Kutesa to speak at the Atlantic Council on September 15, 2015, on the same topic” (03.03.2016 – NSD/FARA Registration Unit).

That the company uses their reach and their messages as back in day, in 2015, when Scribe Strategies and Advisors, they used Kevin J. Kelley to write a piece in the Daily Nation:

Mr Szlavik noted that his firm did have a contract about 10 years ago to lobby for Uganda in the US. In accordance with that deal, Mr Szlavik explained, Scribe sought to persuade the Bush administration to list the Lord’s Resistance Army and the Alliance of Democratic Forces as terrorist organisations. The US does designate the LRA and ADF in that way” (…) “Earlier this year, Mr Szlavik added, he discussed with Uganda’s ambassador in Washington the possibility of Scribe again doing lobbying work for Uganda in the United States. But no agreement has been made, Mr Szlavik said. “There’s no contract, no numbers, no payment,” he declared” (Kelley, 2015).

There should be discussion and counsel going on as just a brief month after the interview and article in the Daily Nation, the company earned about $ 60,000 paid by the Ugandan government. So the company knew all about it in 2015, but wanted to spin the news and their role.

The Company was more upfront about their role in spinning the news for Burundi, as the Scribe Lobbying firm in 2015, addressed matters close to the heart of government of Burundi and again, they used their fellow journalist in the Daily Nation:

The allegations by Joseph Szlavik, head of Scribe Strategies & Advisors, followed reports of fighting between government troops and an unidentified armed group near Burundi’s border with Rwanda” (…) “Mr Szlavik noted in an interview with the Nation that the Burundian leader’s right to run for re-election had been affirmed in May by the country’s Constitutional Court” (…) “Western powers call for respect for the rule of law, and this was the ruling by the Constitutional Court of Burundi,” Mr Szlavik said” (Kelley, 2015).

So Szlavik, the man paid by the Government was clearly knowingly keeping it cool with Burundian authorities, not only spreading their agenda, but also their motives to keep power. Using the tools of legislation and not addressing the grievances of the people demonstrating at the time. Therefore, showing that the ones feeding him was more important than actual justice. That they also, this used the fellow friend in the Daily Nation, show’s how systematic the Scribe Strategies and Advisors work in the East African region.

This is just a quick look into the matter and not really digging deep into the polishing tricks of the company and their employees, as their staff and connections into the House and Senate in the United States was massive. The role to play and their reasoning as the paychecks from CNDD-FDD and NRM comes, they easily comply with the methods and needs from Bujumbura and Kampala. With no care of the implications and ramifications to the innocent in Burundi nor Uganda. Certainly, this is blood-money and I hope they are cursed. Peace.

Reference:

Kelley, Kevin J. – ‘US lobbying firm denies Uganda is currently a client’ (01.04.2015) link:http://www.africareview.com/news/US-lobbying-firm-denies-Uganda-is-currently-a-client/979180-2672786-3ti6at/index.html

Kelley, Kevin J. – ‘Burundi claims Rwanda aiding rebels’ (13.07.2015)

Rwanda 1994: Gen. Paul Kagame letter of 10. August 1994 (Confidentiel)

Uganda: FDC Party Officially welcomes dialogue between the FDC and the NRM (31.03.2017)

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