Eritrean Political Forces Joint appeal

2021-02-20 21:36:03 Written by  Eritrean Political Forces Published in English Articles Read 168 times

To:

H.E. Mr. Pekka Haavisto,

Minister of Foreign Affairs of Finland,

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Helsinki, Finland

Dear Mr. P. Haavisto,

February 16, 2021

We the     undersigned     allied     Eritrean     Political     Forces     in exile are deeply saddened by the rapid escalation of a deadly conflict between the Federal Ethiopian Government with unwarranted support of the Government of Eritrea on the one hand and Regional State of Tigray on the other. In particular the indiscriminate air strikes and ground attacks directed to Tigray occurs at a challenging time as the people struggle to contain the impact of Covid-19 pandemic and a massive locust infestation overwhelming the region during the time of the annual harvest season. Human Rights Watch has rightly said in a report published on February 11 that the apparently indiscriminating shelling of urban areas was a violation of the laws of war.

The world is by now receiving reports of the devastating effect of war on the economy and livelihood of the people and its negative impact on peace and security of the entire region. We continue to witness catastrophic humanitarian crisis with millions of internally displaced people and new waves of refugees fleeing to neighboring Sudan.

Dear Sir,

We Eritreans are particularly worried about the fate of the 172 000 Eritrean refugees most of them in Tigray and Afar regions who have fled enforced military conscription, indefinite national service, lack of freedom  of  speech  and  movement  and  political  persecution  and imprisonment. The invading Eritrean army which still exerts control over two of the refugee camps, namely Shimelba and Hitsaats, has destroyed most of the buildings in the camps and abducted thousands Eritrean refugees and sent them back to Eritrea. The camps are now closed by the Ethiopian government, and the whereabouts of their residents still unacounted.

This  is  done  in  broad  day  light  and  in  flagrant  violation  of international laws and norms. Unfortunately, the UNHCR High Commissioner  Fillipo  Grandi’s  appeal  to  the  prime  minister  of Ethiopia to address the situation as a matter of urgency has not been fulfilled.

Yours excellency,

Our allied forces in exile are aware that the Government of Finland had supported and continues to support the reforms and democratization policies initiated by PM Abiy Ahmed Ali of Ethiopia and  that  Finland along  other Nordic  countries works  for  regional peace, security and integration in the Horn of Africa. Therefore, we eagerly  await  the  result  of  the  ongoing  European Union  initiated dialogue and engagement under your leadership.

Our allied forces in exile also strongly believe that interests of the peoples of the Horn of Africa are complimentary and never mutually exclusive and building regional peace requires the acceptance by all of democratic values and norms and the belief in cooperation, dialogue and compromise in conflict resolution.

We would like to express our concern for the wellbeing of the civilian population of Tigray and Eritrean refugees in the area and appeal to Your Excellency and through you, to the European Union to:

    To ask the Ethiopian Government to guarantee the protection of Eritrean refugee in Tigray and Afar regions as well as in urban centers and allow the UNHCR to continue providing its services.

     Demand the immediate withdrawal of Eritrean troops fromTigray and impose sanctions on the members of government and impose an arms embargo of Eritrea.

    Put pressure on the    Ethiopian    Government    to    allow unfettered humanitarian access to Tigray and find ways of providing emergence food, water and, medical and sanitary supplies to the affected population;

    Condemn the Eritrean Government for its interference in the internal affairs of Ethiopia and demand its immediate withdrawal of its invasion forces;

    Send an independent group to Tigray to investigate the alleged indiscriminate killings including that of Eritrean refugees, the looting of property including church heritages and old manuscripts, systematic rape of women and wanton barning of crops.

    To  call  upon  the  Ethiopian  government  the  to  halt  the violence and resolve the conflict peacefully and engage in a genuine,   inclusive   and   credible   dialogue   under   the auspicious of a neutral international body;

Your Excellency,

A  delegation of  our  allied forced  is  willing explain to  your excellency’s    government,    our    understanding    of    the    recent developments  inside  Eritrea  and  the  region  as  a  whole  and  our endeavors  to  establish  a  constitutional  and  democratically elected government in  Eritrea that  abides by  the  rule  of  law  in  a  digital meeting at a time of your convenience.

Sincerely Yours,

For/ the Chairpersons:

ENCDC (Eritrean  National Council for Democratic Change) ENF (Eritrean National Front)

EPDP (the Eritrean People’s Democratic Party)

UDC (Organization of Unity for Democratic Change)

UEJ (United Eritreans for Justice)

RSADO (Red Sea Afar Democratic Organization) ENF-Hidri (Eritrean National Salvation Front) Copy

Mrs. Theresa Zittling

Director for Unit for the Horn of Africa and Eastern Africa

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Finland, Helsinki.

Last modified on Saturday, 20 February 2021 23:05