Prisoner of Conscience Eskinder Nega is serving an 18 year sentence for his legitimate work as a journalist. He was charged with terrorism-related offenses in 2011 after giving speeches and writing articles critical of the government and supporting free speech. Amnesty International calls for Eskinder's immediate and unconditional release.
Ethiopian authorities routinely use criminal charges and accusations of terrorism to silence dissenting voices. Repression of freedom of expression in Ethiopia has increased alarmingly in recent years. Eskinder has often challenged the Ethiopian authorities through his writing. For this he has been harassed, arrested and prosecuted several times. In 2006 and 2007 Eskinder and his wife Serkalem Fasil and 129 other journalists, opposition politicians and activists were tried in connection with protests following the 2005 election. Serkalem gave birth to their son Nafkot while in prison.
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Ethiopian journalists are working in an environment ofintensifying repression. In recent years, legislation has passed criminalizing freedom of expression as a terrorist act,punishable by up to 20 years in prison. Call on the authorities to free Eskinder and stop silencing journalists!
Show solidarity with Eskinder Nega and his wife Serkalem Fasil
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c/o The Individuals and Communities at Risk Program
Amnesty International USA
600 Pennsylvania Avenue, SE 5th Floor
Washington, DC 20003
WRITE TO THE PRIME MINISTER OF ETHIOPIA
Call on him to immediately and unconditionally release Eskinder Nega, who was detained solely for peacefully exercising his right to freedom of expression.
Urge him to stop using criminal proceedings or the threat of such to silence critics, and end other forms of harassment of journalists, human rights activists and other members of civil society.
Call on him to immediately act to amend laws that unduly restrict freedom of expression and association, including the Anti-Terrorism Proclamation and the Charities and Societies Proclamation.
Prime Minister Hailemariam DesalegnSTART YOUR LETTER: Dear Prime Minister
P.O. Box 1031
Fax: 011 251 11 551 1244
Email via Ministry of Justice: firstname.lastname@example.org