By Drs Tsegezab Gebregergis
On November 14 2018, I wrote an editorial headlined “Shame: The 2009 UN-imposed sanctions on Eritrea are lifted, but the sanctions imposed by the Eritrean Dictator on the Eritrean People remain in place.”
The paradox is that, while the sanctions imposed on the regime of the Eritrean dictator by the United Nations in 2009, namely an arms embargo, a travel ban and an asset freeze, are now lifted. However, the sanctions imposed by the Issaias Afeworki on the Eritrean people remain.
The multiple sanctions imposed on Eritreans for the past decades include: the banning of freedom of expression and protest; restrictions on the right to withdraw money from personal accounts; the banning of free movement of people within the country; the banning of freedom of worship; the imposition of slave-like indefinite military service; and the indefinite imprisonment of Eritrean heroes and heroines under harsh conditions in dark underground prisons. All this has a deadly effect on the spirits, self-image and morale of the Eritrean people.
In short, life under the crude and brutal dictatorship of Issayas Afeworki and his tiny clique has become unbearable and humiliating.
The political situation in Eritrea being so ugly, Mdrebahri appreciates the significant and timely call made by the co-chairs of the Tom Lantos Human Rights Commission, Congressmen Randy Hultgren and James P McGovern, in a letter to the Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, stating that any resetting of relations between the Eritrean and US governments must hinge on human-rights reforms.
Mdrebahri calls on all other governments that have kept silent so far to follow the example of the Lantos Commission and speak out against the Eritrean dictator’s brutal treatment of his people.
The Eritrean people shall prevail!