ETHIOPIA: POLITICALLY MOTIVATED MASS ARRESTS MAKE THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) RISK WORSE

ETHIOPIA: POLITICALLY MOTIVATED MASS ARRESTS MAKE THE CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) RISK WORSE

Urgent Actions

HRLHA’s Press Release
For Immediate Release

April 15, 2020

 The Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) would like to express its deep concern over the potential outbreak of a deadly disease, Coronavirus (COVID-19) at Ethiopian prisons in Oromia Regional State where several political prisoners are confined in Federal concentration camps and police stations, in different Oromia towns including Burayu (west of the Capital), Ambo, Nekemte (Jato Prison) in Western, in Chiro, galamso, Deder town police stations in the Eastern Oromia. Most of the political prisoners are Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) members taken from different places including OLF branch offices and arrested.

Overcrowded and squalid prisons and detention centers risk becoming detonators for a major COVID-19 outbreak which will make the pandemic easily spread and harder to control. Infectious disease in prisons is a serious public health risk; inmates are crammed into small prison cells with many others. Even in facilities that aren’t deemed overcrowded, there is inadequate nutrition, and poor sanitation means that thousands of detainees in concentration camps suffer from health problems, putting them at particular risk amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Olika Chali

The WHO and health specialists have repeatedly warned that contaminated hands too close to people’s faces will surely make prison facilities playgrounds for COVID-19.

At this crucial moment, when the whole world is fighting against the common enemy, COVID-19, politically motivated mass arrests, kidnappings and harassment of members and supporters of Oromo Political Organizations (OLF & OFC) by the Ethiopian government military must be condemned by the World Health Organization, UN Human Rights Council members and the world at large.

According to HRLHA reporters in Oromia, the major target areas of these most recent government-sponsored human rights abuses include Central Showa districts, Wallaga zone districts, and East and West Hararge zone districts.

Although it has been difficult to identify everyone by their names, HRLHA has confirmed that the following were among those arrested recently in Oromia different zones after the outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the country

NoNameSexDetained by  Zone/District, Town  Arrested Date
1Olika Chali (OLF Office Representative)  MFederal Government Security forceBurayu TowmApr. 12,2020
2Geremew Mekonen  MFederal Gov Security forceShambu Town (Wallagga)Apr. 8, 2020
3Mitiku DuressaMFederal Government Security forceGobu Sayyo, East WallagaMar 30, 2020
4Mulata Wak-way (Teacher)MFederal Gov Security forceGobu Sayyo, East WallagaMar 30, 2020
5Zenebe DinagdeMFederal Government Security forceGobu Sayyo, East WallagaMar 30, 2020
6Chalchisa ChaliMFederal Gov Security forceGobu Sayyo, East WallagaMar 30, 2020
7Barecha ShugeMGobu Sayyo, East WallagaMar 30, 2020
8Solan Haile  MFederal Gov. Security forceWalkite Town (West Shewa)
9Abdi Girma  MFederal Gov. Security forceJeldu Town (West Shewa)Apr.6, 2020
10Dirirsa Abera ( Erlier Who was dismissed from Jima University)MFederal Gov. Security forceBurayu, TownApr. 3, 2020
11Dilbi Merera  MFederal Gov. Security forceBakko Tobe (West ShewaMar.30, 2020
12Dhibashi Abdissa (Dilbi’s Mother)  FFederal Gov. Security forceBakko Tobe (West ShewaMar.30, 2020
13Sena Merera , 13 Dilb’s Sister  FFederal Gov. Security forceBakko Tobe (West ShewaMar.30, 2020
14Temesgen asmera  MFederal Gov. Security forceBakko Tobe (West ShewaMar. 30, 2020
15Dereje Merga Debelo (OFC youth Organization Leader)  MFederal Gov. Security forceFinfinne (AA)Mar.14, 2020
16Bonsa Befkadu (OLF office Worker)  MFederal Gov. Security forceFinfinne, BoleMar.12, 2020
17Bonsa NigatuMFederal Gov. Security forceBakko Tobe (West ShewaMar. 9, 2020
18Lencho  MFederal Gov. Security forceBakko Tobe (West ShewaMar.9, 2020
19Oromiyaa AbdurahimanFFederal Gov. Security forceChalenko,East HarargeApr. 7, 2020
20Abdele YuyaMFederal Gov. Security forceChalenko,East HarargeApr. 7, 2020
21Ahmed JawarMFederal Gov. Security forceChalenko,East HarargeApr. 7, 2020
22Mohamed ShamiMFederal Gov. Security forceChalenko,East HarargeApr. 7, 2020
23Fesal MusaMFederal Gov. Security forceChalenko,East HarargeApr. 9, 2020
24Mume AdamMFederal Gov. Security forceChalenko,East HarargeApr. 9, 2020
25Amme HasoMFederal Gov. Security forceChalenko,East HarargeApr. 9, 2020
26Debisa GadaMFederal Gov. Security forceJarso, East HarargeMar 30, 2020
27Shfa JibroMFederal Gov. Security forceJarso, East HarargeMar 30, 2020
28Yusuf AbdelaMFederal Gov. Security forceJarso, East HarargeMar 30, 2020
29Ibsa KalifMFederal Gov. Security forceBaddano, Karcha, East HarargeApril 8, 2020
30Mohamed IbrahimMFederal Gov. Security forceBaddano, Karcha, East HarargeApril 8, 2020
31Sulta JamalMFederal Gov. Security forceBaddano, Karcha, East HarargeApril 8, 2020
32Mutessa MohamedMFederal Gov. Security forceBaddano, Karcha, East HarargeApril 8, 2020
33Lenjissa BokeMFederal Gov. Security forceGara Mulata, East HarargeApr 10, 2020
34Obsa SarkamoMFederal Gov. Security forceGara Mulata, East HarargeApr 10, 2020
35Bayisa BariMFederal Gov. Security forceGara Mulata, East HarargeApr 10, 2020
36Aliyi MohamedMFederal Gov. Security forceGara Mulata, East HarargeApr 10, 2020
37Arif ChabiMFederal Gov. Security forceGara Mulata, East HarargeApr 10, 2020
38Eliyas HassenMFederal Gov. Security forceDeder/East HarargeApr 12, 2020
39Shambal ChanaMFederal Gov. Security forceGoro Dola, East Guji ZoneApr 13, 2020
40Desta GoluMFederal Gov. SecurityGoro Dola, East Guji ZoneApr 13, 2020
41Golu GuyyeMFederal Gov. Security forceGoro Dola, East Guji ZoneApr 13, 2020
42Yared SafayMFederal Gov. Security forceGoro Dola, East Guji ZoneApr 13, 2020
43Shek JiloMFederal Gov. Security forceGoro Dola, East Guji ZoneApr 13, 2020
44Chana JiloMFederal Gov. Security forceGoro Dola, East Guji ZoneApr 13, 2020
45Sora JiloMFederal Gov. Security forceGoro Dola, East Guji ZoneApr 13, 2020
46Dulacha JiloMFederal Gov. Security forceGoro Dola, East Guji ZoneApr 13, 2020
47Fikrte AdayyoFFederal Gov. Security forceGoro Dola, East Guji ZoneApr 13, 2020
48Balako DararaMFederal Gov. Security forceGoro Dola, East Guji ZoneApr 13, 2020
49Seba FranjiiFFederal Gov. Security forceLiban District & Negele BoranaApr 13, 2020
50Loko Kula KireFFederal Gov. Security forceLiban District & Negele BoranaApr 13, 2020
51Kabale Wakise LibanFFederal Gov. Security forceLiban District & Negele BoranaApr 13, 2020
52Darartu BoruFFederal Gov. Security forceLiban District & Negele BoranaApr 13, 2020
53Daratu BoruFFederal Gov. Security forceLiban District & Negele BoranaApr 13, 2020
54Iftu WakoFFederal Gov. Security forceLiban District & Negele BoranaApr 13, 2020
55Chluke JarssaMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020
56Garara WateMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020
57Udessa UlaneMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020
58Kutala BaliMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020
59Danko AnoleMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020
60Desta KinaMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020
61Desha MitaMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020
62Gobena GerbiMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020
63Robayi DukaleMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020
64Ana GerbiMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020
65Dawa Aba LokoMFederal Gov. Security forceSaba Buriti, East Guji ZoneMar 30, 2020

Recommendations to the Government of Ethiopia:

  1. Stop brutalities being perpetrated by the Federal military and Security force  against the members and supporters of political opposition parties
  •  The Ethiopian Government must stop politically motivated detentions and unconditionally release  all arbitrarily detained officials, members and supporters, of opposition political parties languishing in different official and unofficial detention centers
  • The Ethiopian government must give priority to stopping the potential spread of  Coronavirus pandemic by returning its military forces to their camps and stop harassing citizens in their homes
  • Investigate and bring to justice members of the security forces especially the Oromia Special Police who have been perpetrating wicked atrocities against political dissenters and innocent civilians

Copied To:

1. WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION (WHO)
CONTACT INFORMATION
Avenue Appia 20
1211 Geneva 27
Switzerland
Email: hrhinfo@who.int

2. OFFICE OF THE UNITED NATIONS HIGH COMMISSIONER FOR HUMAN RIGHTS (OHCHR)
CONTACT INFORMATION
Palais Wilson
52 rue des Pâquis
CH-1201 Geneva, Switzerland

Postal address:
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)
Palais des Nations
CH-1211 Geneva 10, Switzerland   

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