Home | News    Sunday 18 September 2011

Ethiopia denies terrorism-linked arrests “politically motivated”

separation
increase
decrease
separation
separation

By Tesfa-Alem Tekle

September 17, 2011 (ADDIS ABABA) – The Ethiopian government said the recent arrests made against opposition politicians and journalists were not politically motivated claiming that a terror plot was planned for the country’s New Year celebrations last week.

Ethiopian security forces earlier this week arrested five terror suspects on alleged links with Ginbot 7, an exiled political group, recently designated as terrorist organisation by Addis Ababa.

The Federal Police and the Government Communication Affairs Office (GCAO) in a joint press conference both gave on Friday said police has concrete evidence over their planned terror plot links to Ginbot 7.

Among the arrested included Andualem Arage, deputy chairman of the Medrek party, the country’s biggest opposition group, and three other opposition party members.

“Police have adequate evidence against these terror suspects with close links to the terrorist group Ginbot 7,” said Demelash Gebremichael, assistant the assistant commissioner of Ethiopia’s federal police.

He said the suspects engaged in undercover work for outlawed entities using their legal political membership as cover for their terrorism plots.

“Being a member of a political party does not exempt one from criminal liability and the evidence we will present to court during trial shows their involvement in terrorism,” Demelash said.

Following the arrests, Human Rights Watch urged the Ethiopian government to end what the rights group said was “a widening crackdown against opposition politicians and dissidents”

Adopted in 2009, Ethiopia’s Anti-Terrorism Proclamation, contains a broad and vague definition of terrorist acts and makes the publication of statements "likely to be understood as encouraging terrorist acts" punishable by imprisonment for 10 to 20 years.

International human rights groups have described the Proclamation as “restrictive and vague” and have further criticised the broadly termed law as a weapon designed to easily accuse peaceful critics against government.

Minister of state at the Communications Ministry, Shimeles Kemal, defended the government over reports that the arrests were in order to suppress civil dissent.

“Such claim of arrests of individuals in the country because of political outlooks is baseless” he said.

“Over 90 political parties operate in the country and none of these political party members are being harassed or intimidated for their political outlook.”

Those being held were “leading a plan to throw the country into serious political chaos through a series of terrorist acts,” he added.

(ST)

Comments on the Sudan Tribune website must abide by the following rules. Contravention of these rules will lead to the user losing their Sudan Tribune account with immediate effect.

- No inciting violence
- No inappropriate or offensive language
- No racism, tribalism or sectarianism
- No inappropriate or derogatory remarks
- No deviation from the topic of the article
- No advertising, spamming or links
- No incomprehensible comments

Due to the unprecedented amount of racist and offensive language on the site, Sudan Tribune tries to vet all comments on the site.

There is now also a limit of 400 words per comment. If you want to express yourself in more detail than this allows, please e-mail your comment as an article to comment@sudantribune.com

Kind regards,

The Sudan Tribune editorial team.


The following ads are provided by Google. SudanTribune has no authority on it.



Sudan Tribune

Promote your Page too

Latest Comments & Analysis


Why Sudan’s interests lie U.S. delisting and normalization with Israel 2020-10-22 06:08:56 By: Trayo A. Ali How will the de-linking of the American process for removing Sudan from the State Sponsor of Terror (SST) list from its process of normalizing relations with Israel diminish the (...)

No to calls for anti-peace protests 2020-10-22 06:07:08 By Mahmoud A. Suleiman Some traditional Sudanese political parties have grown old and are crying out to demand that the Sudanese people go out on October 21, 2020, in a major demonstration to (...)

The 21 October March: Who is the Enemy? 2020-10-21 05:52:11 By Yasir Arman One of the main features of the December revolution is its vitality and the broad participation of women and youth, resistance committees, martyrs' families, forces from the (...)


MORE






Latest Press Releases


Sudan: Performing arts is not a crime, assaulting women and artists is! 2020-09-20 08:54:28 The Strategic Initiative for Women in the Horn of Africa (SIHA) Sudan is still struggling with militant Islamist ideology KHARTOUM: Central Khartoum Primary Court issued a verdict against five (...)

Civil Society Statement in Response to The Law of Various Amendments 2020-08-14 07:11:00 A Collaborative Civil Society Statement in Response to The Law of Various Amendments (Abolishing and Amending Provisions Restricting Freedom) – Exposing ‘a wolf in sheep’s clothing’ Sudanese women (...)

Remarks by SRF leaders at the Friend of Sudan meeting on peace 2020-08-13 07:58:58 Chairman of the Friends of Sudan Conference, Your Excellency, Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, The Prime Minister of Sudan and the participating team from the (...)


MORE

Copyright © 2003-2020 SudanTribune - All rights reserved.