EU Decry Ethiopia Rights Abuse

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Africa News

A Committee of the European Parliament has strongly criticized what it called "massive human rights violations" going on in Ethiopia since 2005.

"The human rights situation has been deteriorating in Ethiopia since 2005, with opposition members put in jail, while rights activists are awaiting trial," the Committee’s chair, Josep Borrel, said at a
parliamentary debate.

The Ethiopian ambassador to Belgium, Ato Berhane Gebré-Christos, had been invited to the EU parliamentary debate, but he was said to have turned down the invitation.

In a letter to the European Parliament, the Ethiopian Foreign Ministry reportedly said Addis Ababa could not honor the invitation because the "expected speakers might not provide an objective assessment of the situation in Ethiopia."

Hélène Flautre, chair of the EU parliament’s Human Rights sub-committee, claimed that Ethiopia’s May 2005 legislative elections, were marred by fraud.

"The attitudes of the Ethiopian government, which violates its people’s human rights and aspirations for democracy, and the Ethiopian troops that invaded Somalia pretending to be fighting terrorism, are shameful," declared another EU MP Ana Gomes, who led an EU observer mission to Ethiopia. In a resolution in November 2006, the European Parliament had requested the publication of the final report of the Ethiopian government’s inquiry into the May 2005 legislative elections. 


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