October 6, 2009, New York—Ethiopian Women’s Human Rights Alliance (EWHRA) released a report today submitted to the Universal Periodic Review (UPR), a United Nations (UN) mechanism aimed at reviewing the human rights record of UN member countries. EWHRA’s report details the egregious violation of human rights committed by the Ethiopian government in contravention of its obligations under numerous international human rights treaties.
While the Ethiopian government continues to violate international standards with regard to a myriad of fundamental human rights, in this report, [EWHRA] concentrates primarily on the following issues: freedom of association, freedom of political life and right to be free from arbitrary arrest and detention, freedom of expression, violation of women’s rights, anti-terrorism measures and torture by Ethiopian Security Forces. EWHRA’s report is available on the
United Nations Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights website.
“EWHRA is pleased to be a participant in this extremely important review of the Ethiopian government’s abhorrent record on human rights. EWHRA’s goal is ensuring that the voices of the eighty million women, children and men suffering under the current regime are heard and that those responsible for violating internationally recognized rights are held accountable,” said a representative of the grassroots organization.
In addition to outlining the violations of human rights committed by the regime, the report also provides specific recommendations, consistent with Ethiopia’s obligations under various human rights agreements, which are aimed at ameliorating the current situation.
The Ethiopian government is expected to present its report before the Human Rights Council in December 2009.
The Ethiopian Women’s Human Rights Alliance [EWHRA] was formed in January 2009 to address the ongoing and egregious human rights violations in Ethiopia. Outraged at the massive rights abuses and concerned by the draconian law passed by the Ethiopian Parliament that is designed to silence all types of dissent and clampdown on any civil society activity, a multi-generational group of women came together to form a common platform. The goal of the organization is to mobilize against human right abuses in Ethiopia through a range of activities including policy change, letter writing campaigns and engaging international organizations. This grassroots movement relies on the effort and commitment of long time Ethiopian activists and community organizers, friends of Ethiopians, and partner organizations concerned about justice. Among the group’s ongoing project is organizing around the re-arrest of Judge Birtukan Mideksa, a prominent opposition party leader and Africa’s only woman to hold such a position. Judge Mideksa is serving a life sentence and is considered a prisoner of conscience.
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For more information regarding the report please contact the Ethiopian Women’s Human Rights Alliance at the following email address:
ETHIOPIAN WOMEN’S HUMAN RIGHTS ALLIANCE