• #presse_fasciste italienne en #Erythrée
    Dans le livre de Alessandro Leogrande, La Frontiera (2017), il y a une partie dédiée à la #presse_fasciste italienne en #Erythrée... (pp. 168-176). Je reprends les titres ici, on ne sait jamais...

    Et le petit texte en intro :

    «Impieghiamo un pomeriggio intero per sfogliarli tutti. Sono davvero tanti, ma ancora più sorprendente è la varietà delle testate. Quotidiani, settimanali, fogli di informazione, riviste giovanili, testate sportive. Una selva di caratteri stampati da rotative giunte allora dall’Europa rivela parole, annunci economici, notizie, commenti, invettive. Riproduce una pluralità d’opinioni, speculari a quelle che andavano sorgendo in Italia nello stesso periodo. Vista attraverso il prisma della sua stampa vivace, l’Eritrea del passato sembra una regione italiana, solo un po’ più a sud delle altre, con un occhio rivolto ai grandi eventi internazionali e l’altro a se stessa, alla propria cronaca quotidiana.
    ’Tutto questo è proseguito ben oltre la fine della Seconda guerra mondiale e il crollo del fascismo’, mi dice Sandro mentre fa un po’ di spazio sulla sua scrivania. Nell’Eritrea passata prima sotto il mandato britannico e poi sotto il controllo etiopico, la comunità italiana, era rimasta molto forte. Le scuole in lingua italiana (...) erano ancora numerose.
    Lo stesso valeva per i giornali, benché solo pochissimi esemplari siano conservati nelle biblioteche e nelle emeroteche italiane. Probabilmente molti meno di quelli contenuti nei due borsonoi che abbiamo rovesciato a quattro mani sul tavolo dello studio»

    –—

    Voici les titres dont parle Alessandro Leogrande :
    – Il quotidiano eritreo
    – Il lunedì dell’Eritrea
    – Il Carroccio
    – La pagina sportiva
    – Asmara sport
    – Mai Taclì

    #colonialisme #Italie #fascisme #journaux #colonisation #Erythrée

    ping @albertocampiphoto @wizo

  • Libye : attaque du centre de détention de Zintan par un groupe armé - InfoMigrants
    https://www.infomigrants.net/fr/post/26147/libye-attaque-du-centre-de-detention-de-zintan-par-un-groupe-arme

    Un groupe d’hommes armés a tiré sur les gardes du centre de détention de Zintan, au sud-ouest de Tripoli, dans le but de kidnapper les migrants retenus, pour certaines depuis des années, à l’intérieur. Avec ce nouvel incident, le directeur du centre affirme que son personnel ne peut plus assurer la sécurité des détenus.La tension est montée d’un cran ces dernières 24 heures dans le centre de détention de Zintan, au sud-ouest de Tripoli en Libye : plusieurs migrants affirment qu’un groupe d’hommes armés a attaqué l’édifice lundi 20 juillet dans le but de kidnapper puis probablement exploiter ou torturer les quelques centaines de détenus - principalement des Érythréens - qui survivent péniblement sur place.
    « Pitié, sortez-nous de là », implore l’un d’entre eux enfermé depuis des mois, joint par InfoMigrants. « Ici, c’est la panique. On a peur pour nos vies, on a faim, beaucoup d’entre nous sont malades, il va y avoir un drame, c’est sûr », poursuit le jeune homme avant de couper court de peur d’être repéré en possession d’un téléphone portable

    #Covid-19#migrant#migration#libye#erythree#sante#centredetention#contamination#violence

  • Eritrean refugees fight Afwerki’s regime

    Exiles from the northeast African country are using social media and TV satellites as weapons to resist the brutal government of Isaias Afwerki.

    “It doesn’t make sense for me to come to Malta and complain about Maltese society,” said Major Sium, a 35-year-old Eritrean asylum seeker. “I want to complain about my government. I want to talk about the regime that caused my displacement.”

    Sium sat at a restaurant in the town of Msida in Malta along with two other Eritrean asylum seekers. They were here to speak about their experiences in the small island nation. But they quickly changed the topic, retracing a haunting picture of their lives back in Eritrea – often referred to as the “North Korea of Africa” – shaped by indefinite and compulsory national conscription and wide-scale human rights abuses.

    “We are here because of an unelected regime that is steering the whole nation into becoming refugees or submissive subjects,” Sium says. Several buzzing fans propped on the walls spew hot and humid air over the table.

    “This is a government that rules the nation by fear. It enslaves and arrests its citizens and doesn’t have any regard for the values of human rights. As long as these issues that forced us to flee continue, we can never think about going back to Eritrea.”

    But Sium is not sitting idle. He has decided to do something about it.

    Like thousands of other Eritreans in exile or from the diaspora, Sium has joined a growing social movement aimed at toppling President Isaias Afwerki’s regime in Eritrea through social media campaigns that highlight the brutal and oppressive practices of his government, while encouraging other Eritreans to speak out.

    “I don’t live there anymore so they can’t hurt me,” Sium said. “They will instead target my family and they will try and hurt them to punish me. Of course, I am scared. But how much longer can we possibly go on living in fear?”

    Oppressive regime

    After fleeing into neighbouring Sudan, it took Sium 11 days to travel from Khartoum to Tripoli in Libya, where he boarded a wooden fishing boat in July 2013, along with hundreds of other migrants from North Africa and the Middle East, and took the perilous journey across the Mediterranean, where thousands have lost their lives over the years attempting to reach Europe.

    “We were all terrified,” Sium said. “We were in the boat for three days. The boat was so overcrowded. There was no space to move. People were getting sick and shouting. All you could see was endless blue sea on all sides of you. It was horrible.”

    After two days, the engine permanently broke down and the boat stopped moving. “People started going crazy. They began jumping into the sea because the heat was too unbearable,” Sium recounted. “People were panicking and praying. Some of the passengers began confessing their sins. It felt like judgement day.”

    Someone had a mobile phone and called an Eritrean priest living in Italy, who then alerted authorities. It took about 14 hours before the Italian and Maltese coast guards arrived to rescue the refugees and migrants. Sium was taken to Malta, where he was given subsidiary protection status – a temporary status that does not provide a path to permanent residency or citizenship.

    Sium never aspired to travel to Europe. “The only thought in my mind was getting out of the country and finding a place where I could have safety and liberty,” he said. Sium was a teacher in Eritrea’s national service and had always dreamed of fleeing the country. But it wasn’t until he was imprisoned for a year – accused of assisting a fellow teacher to flee – that he realised he no longer had a choice.

    Since 2001, Eritreans have lived under what Laetitia Bader, a senior Africa researcher at Human Rights Watch (HRW), says is “probably the most oppressive regime in Sub-Saharan Africa”. Eritrea gained independence from Ethiopia in 1993. The countries fought a bloody war from 1998 until 2000. For the past two decades, tensions have continued between the countries.

    Hostilities with Ethiopia provided Afwerki an impetus to create a system of repression and authoritarianism that has continued today, in which independent media is banned, criticisms are prohibited and scores of political prisoners face appalling conditions and torture – oftentimes held incommunicado, according to rights groups.

    The core of this system of control is the country’s compulsory and indefinite national conscription, which allows the government to “hold a large proportion of the adult population hostage”, Bader said.

    In their final year of secondary school, both male and female students are sent for basic military training at the Sawa military academy, where rights groups have documented systematic abuse, torture, degrading punishments and harsh working conditions.

    Following the basic training, “they are sent either into the military for the rest of their working lives or into civilian service – and they have no control over or say in their deployment or assignments they get. They are often sent far away from home with little pay,” Bader said.

    Eritreans in national service need government permission to so much as visit the home of their families. This permission is rarely granted, according to Bader. If an Eritrean is lucky enough to obtain permission to travel to another area of the country, they are issued a permit that details their national service status and exactly where they’re allowed to go.

    Checkpoints set up in between towns and cities in Eritrea ensure that no one is moving without government permission. According to HRW, 15% of the population has fled the country in the past two decades – and hundreds continue to flee each month.

    Sium wanted nothing more than to forget about Eritrea. “I always thought politics were pointless,” he said. “In Eritrea no one is speaking out. The best thing you can do is save yourself by escaping and living the rest of your life as a refugee until you die.”

    “What’s the point of speaking about a story that I left behind? It would be better for me to focus on where I am now and what I want to do now,” he added.

    Sium, along with 30-year-old Mazelo Gebrezgabhier, another Eritrean asylum seeker, had high hopes of being resettled in the United States. But after US President Donald Trump took office and froze the country’s refugee resettlement programme, their dreams of obtaining a normal life were shattered.

    “I’ve just been living and waiting for my turn to be settled in another country. I was told I was going to be resettled in America,” Sium said. “But after Trump got elected, it all suddenly vanished.

    “So we decided we needed to do something to change the situation back in our country. No matter how far you flee, it’s never the end. We decided we should start organising the refugees here to start speaking out.”

    Various nonprofits, civil society organisations and groups have emerged in the diaspora over the years to raise awareness and speak out against Afwerki’s human rights abuses. Last year, all the various organisations, individuals and groups active in the movement united under one hashtag: #yiakl or “Enough!” in Tigrinya, a language widely spoken in Eritrea.

    “We decided to create an umbrella movement that unites everyone,” Semhar Ghebreslassie, a prominent activist in the movement, explained. “Regardless of your politics or your ideologies, as long as you oppose the regime and want changes in our country then you are part of the movement.”

    Social media campaigns have involved Eritreans posting videos on social media of themselves reading the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) in Tigrinya. In the #yiakl movement, Eritrean activists are identifying themselves, speaking out against the regime and then encouraging others to do the same.

    “I chose to use my real name because I want other people to come out from hiding and use their real names,” Sium said. “I want my people to know that we shouldn’t be scared to be doing what is right for our country.”

    “All of us, including me, have been really scared to use our real names when criticising the regime. But we need personal liberation. We have to stand up and think for ourselves. We need to stop thinking that the regime is following and watching us wherever we go.”

    He added: “The more we come together, the weaker the regime will be. This is how we are going to defeat it. We need to identify ourselves and be courageous if we want to change our country.”

    Sium and Gebrezgabhier are now organising the Eritrean asylum seeking community in Malta to also join the movement.

    “We realised that becoming refugees ourselves would not stop the problem of people becoming refugees,” Sium said. “The only reason that more than a million Eritreans have ended up as refugees in foreign lands is because of our silence.”

    In the blood

    Ghebreslassie fled Eritrea with just the clothes on her back. She embarked on the journey on 17 December 2014 – the day of her 28th birthday.

    Ghebreslassie, now 32, and a 17-year-old boy were led by a local smuggler across fields of maize and sorghum. They walked nonstop for two days and three nights, hiding behind bushes and mountains to avoid detection by armed Eritrean soldiers at the border, until they arrived in the first town in Sudan.

    “I’m not usually a girl who is scared of anything,” Ghebreslassie said. “There is a shoot-to-kill policy at the Eritrean border for those who flee. I kept thinking I was going to die on the same day that I was born. I was feeling amazed at the coincidence of that. You’re thinking of surviving and dying at the same time.”

    Her voice begins to crack as she fights back tears. “I kept thinking about my family. I was scared that if they caught me they would take my family to … prison.”

    Ghebreslassie stayed in Khartoum for about a year before a smuggler fixed her visa to France, allowing her to reunite with her siblings in Sweden, where she was eventually granted refugee status.

    Ghebreslassie was active against the regime even while she was in hiding for two and a half years in the Eritrean capital city of Asmara, after fleeing her teacher post in the national service. Eritrea is widely considered to be the least technologically connected and the most censored country on Earth.

    Only 1.3% of the population in Eritrea has access to the internet. In Asmara, there are only a few internet cafes, all of which are monitored by security agents. Eritreans are usually too fearful to read or open an opposition website because it could lead to interrogations or arrests.

    But Ghebreslassie was one of the few Eritreans willing to risk it.

    She got a job at an internet cafe in Asmara for a few months and stumbled upon the various groups abroad that were speaking out against Afwerki’s regime on social media. She became an informant for two opposition media outlets based in the United States and France and shared first-hand information on the happenings inside the country.

    But Eritrean soldiers often carry out “roundups”, where they search for national service deserters. “When you’re hiding, you can’t move from city to city because of the checkpoints. But even in the city, they sometimes come inside people’s homes, but mostly they stop people on the streets to check to see if they have a permit to travel,” Ghebreslassie explained.

    At times Ghebreslassie was not able to leave her home for days; other times she was forced to sleep at work in fear she would be caught in the roundups. Eventually, she decided to flee the country entirely.

    The farther she got from Eritrea, the louder Ghebreslassie’s voice became. In Khartoum, she regularly met with other Eritrean activists who had fled and when she arrived in Sweden, she quickly became an outspoken and prominent member of the movement on social media.

    “Once I left Eritrean soil, I couldn’t stop speaking out. It feels like it’s in my blood. The first time I was able to access wifi was in Sweden, and then I became very involved in politics.”

    Ghebreslassie has since helped organise scores of social media campaigns and protests against Afwerki’s regime, including the historic 2016 demonstration in Geneva in which thousands of Eritreans from the diaspora rallied in support of a UN commission report that accused the regime of committing “crimes against humanity” and “enslaving” up to 400 000 people.
    Afraid of their own shadows

    According to the Eritrean activists, the biggest obstacle for the movement is overcoming the fear that has followed them from Eritrea. “There is still a lot of mistrust among us,” Sium said. “There are still [pro-regime] informants among us. We are scared to speak out against Afwerki to anyone. This fear has followed us to Malta.”

    Amnesty International released a report last year detailing the harassment by the Eritrean government and its supporters against Eritrean activists in the diaspora, which included activists being assaulted, harassed and threatened.

    Ghebreslassie herself has been barraged with death threats since becoming a visible and vocal member of the movement. “They tell me to stop or else they will find me and kill me,” she said.

    Bader concurred, saying that “the government definitely has a long arm and it has different ways of maintaining control and monitoring individuals outside the country”. There have also been concerns of Eritrean translators and interpreters in the European asylum systems being security agents and government collaborators.

    Activists also face serious risks of their family members being targeted back in Eritrea, Bader said. But, according to Ghebreslassie, the more activists come out from hiding, using their real names and identities, the more others are encouraged to do the same.

    “The fear is overwhelming,” Ghebreslassie said. “People are afraid of their own shadows. It’s very difficult for us to convince people to come out and speak out. But I tell people that if there are only a few people speaking out, then of course the regime will target our families. But if there are many of us, how will the regime hurt all of our families?”

    Gebrezgabhier said: “I am very worried about my family. But the fear doesn’t matter anymore. The regime is making all of us into refugees. We can’t tolerate living in fear anymore.”

    According to 23-year-old Vannessa Tsehaye, the founder of the rights organisation One Day Seyoum – named after her uncle who has been imprisoned in Eritrea since 2001 – a major turning point for the movement was the 2018 peace deal between Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Afwerki. For 20 years, Eritreans were told that these restrictive measures on the population were necessary to ensure the country’s national security amid tensions with Ethiopia.

    But although telephone lines and flights between the two countries were restored and the border temporarily opened for a few months – before gradually being sealed again – nothing changed for the people of Eritrea. The number of Eritreans participating in the movement began to surge.

    According to activists, even dedicated regime supporters have begun changing teams, enraged by what they see as a two-decade-long lie by Afwerki to justify keeping hundreds of thousands of Eritreans in bondage.

    Ghebreslassie said that even a regime supporter who assaulted her in 2017 during a confrontation in Sweden has since apologised and joined the opposition movement following the peace deal.

    Last year, Ahmed received the Nobel Peace Prize for his role in the deal – to the disdain of Eritrean activists. Tsehaye, who spoke out against the Eritrean regime at the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) last year, said that awarding Ahmed the prize showed “huge disrespect to the people of Eritrea”.

    “All it has done is legitimise an extremely brutal regime on the international stage,” she said, pointing out that following the peace deal the UN lifted an arms embargo in place since 2009 on Eritrea and the UN General Assembly elected Eritrea to be one of the 47 member states of the HCR.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-_g9RysC5no&feature=emb_logo

    Whispers of resistance

    If fear is a defining hurdle for the activists in the diaspora, it takes the form of a straitjacket for those still living inside the country.

    Bader said that there is “definitely no open criticism or public or civil organisations” inside Eritrea. Besides almost “unheard of” protests in 2017 when the Eritrean government attempted to nationalise the Islamic school system in Asmara, “you don’t have public protests”, Bader said, and public gatherings of more than three people are completely banned.

    Anyone who publicly criticises the government is arrested and held in indefinite incommunicado detention without charge or trial, according to rights groups. Therefore, the movement is not only aimed at encouraging those in exile to speak out, but also those back in the belly of the beast.

    “We want to break the fear of our people back in our country,” Ghebreslassie said. “There’s so much fear. If you speak up you either get imprisoned or killed. But this has been going on for too long. If we don’t sacrifice anything we won’t gain anything. So we’re trying to break through the fear across the nation.”

    However, the limited access to the internet in Eritrea, along with the government’s strict censorship, makes the use of social media less effective at galvanising those still inside the country.

    Consequently, Eritrean activists in exile, part of the #yiakl movement, did something extraordinary: they established ERISAT (“Justice”), an opposition station that broadcasts into homes in Eritrea. It’s the first opposition satellite that has made a breakthrough into Eritrean airspace. Assenna Satellite TV, another opposition satellite TV station, followed suit.

    According to Ghebreslassie, the TV programmes are meant to communicate the campaigns and activities of the Eritrean activists in the diaspora and bring those still in the country into the discussions and debates.

    “But it’s not just about broadcasting our activities,” Ghebreslassie explained. “We also send personalised messages to our people in our country, like the police and army forces, and try to convince them to stand by their people and against the regime.”

    Afwerki’s government, seemingly in panic, has attempted to jam the channels’ airwaves.

    According to Ghebreslassie, subtle whispers of resistance are starting to be heard from Eritrea. Small groups of university students have organised themselves and distributed pamphlets that echo the sentiments of the #yiakl movement. Graffiti has appeared on the streets of Asmara that calls for an end to national conscription.

    “It’s small groups doing small things,” Ghebreslassie said. “But it doesn’t even sound real to me. This is a huge step for Eritrea.” Ghebreslassie believes this is a direct result of the movement’s satellite TV channels.

    Analysts have also pointed out that Afwerki seems to be increasingly concerned about the possibility of protests. Last year, he shut down health centres run by the Catholic Church, reportedly owing to the bishops criticising him, and carried out waves of random arrests.

    He also blocked social media sites in the country and closed internet cafes following the revolution in neighbouring Sudan. Analysts believe Afwerki is fearful that the revolutionary ideologies of the Sudanese could spread to Eritrea.

    Despite the long road ahead, the Eritrean activists are not giving up.

    “I’m not doing this just for my people,” Ghebreslassie said. “I’m doing this for myself. I was not supposed to be living here in Sweden. This is not my home. I’m supposed to be living in my own country and doing the jobs that I choose and eating the foods that I like.

    “We were robbed of so many of our rights,” she continued. “I still feel it inside. I feel like half of my life was stolen by the regime. I’m fighting to reclaim my rights from the regime and for all of those who have died by its hands and who can never be brought back to life and for those who are rotting in prison.”

    Her voice cracks again. She takes a deep breath and tries to steady it.

    “I’m doing this for my country because I love my country so much. All of us do. We want to change our country so that we can finally go home and live normal lives.”

    https://www.newframe.com/long-read-eritrean-refugees-fight-afwerkis-regime
    #Erythrée #Afwerki #diaspora #résistance #réfugiés #réfugiés_érythréens #lutte

    ping @isskein @karine4

  • HCR - L’art apporte espoir et réconfort aux réfugiés érythréens en Libye
    https://www.unhcr.org/fr/news/stories/2020/6/5ef2234fa/lart-apporte-espoir-reconfort-refugies-erythreens-libye.html

    Cependant, l’art est aussi essentiel pour moi, pour ma vie, et mes amis et d’autres personnes autour de moi aident de toutes les manières qu’ils peuvent en me fournissant certains articles pour la peinture et le dessin. »Solomon dessine et peint depuis qu’il est enfant. Il est autodidacte et n’a jamais suivi de cours d’art. Sa foi éclaire une grande partie de son œuvre – de grandes toiles aux couleurs riches et vibrantes représentant des scènes bibliques, y compris des figures de saints. Ces peintures lui donnent non seulement un but et une inspiration, a déclaré Solomon, mais elles ont également aidé d’autres réfugiés érythréens et éthiopiens qui luttent pour survivre en Libye. « Nous n’avons nulle part où prier dans ce pays. Nous utilisons donc ces photos », a-t-il expliqué. « Les gens, quand ils prient, ont une sorte d’espoir et, en utilisant ce tableau pour prier, les gens gardent leur foi et se sentent protégés du danger. »

    #Covid-19#migrant#migration#refugie#erythree#ethiopie#libye#art#santementale#sante#securité

  • "Via la statua di #Montanelli da Milano, è stato un razzista": la richiesta dei Sentinelli apre il dibattito in Comune

    Dopo l’uccisione negli Usa di George Floyd l’associazione milanese chiede che venga tolta la statua e cambiata l’intitolazione dei giardini pubblici. Salvini: «Che vergogna». Parte del Pd sostiene la proposta di discuterne, ma dal capogruppo arriva il no.

    L’anno scorso le donne di «Non una di meno» l’avevano imbrattata con la vernice rosa durante il corteo dell’8 marzo. Ora sono i ’#Sentinelli_di_Milano', a fare una lettera appello al sindaco Beppe Sala e al Consiglio comunale per chiedere di rimuovere la statua dedicata a #Indro_Montanelli, giornalista e scrittore che in Africa durante il colonialismo italiano si macchiò della colpa di fare di una bambina eritrea la sua concubina. A lui la giunta del sindaco Gabriele Albertini intitolò anche il giardino di Porta Venezia dove c’è la statua a lui dedicata. Un tema molto controverso che viene adesso legato all’omicidio in America dell’afroamericano George Floyd, scatena il dibattito in Rete e in futuro approderà in aula a Palazzo Marino.

    L’appello per la rimozione è sulla pagina Facebook dell’associazione che si batte per i diritti (https://www.facebook.com/isentinellidimilano/photos/a.326149944234099/1563182730530808/?type=3&theater): «A Milano ci sono un parco e una statua dedicati a Indro Montanelli, che fino alla fine dei suoi giorni ha rivendicato con orgoglio il fatto di aver comprato e sposato una bambina eritrea di dodici anni perché gli facesse da schiava sessuale, durante l’aggressione del regime fascista all’Etiopia. Noi riteniamo che sia ora di dire basta a questa offesa alla città e ai suoi valori democratici e antirazzisti e richiamiamo l’intero consiglio a valutare l’ipotesi di rimozione della statua, per intitolare i #Giardini_Pubblici a qualcuno che sia più degno di rappresentare la storia e la memoria della nostra città Medaglia d’Oro della Resistenza», si legge nel post subito condiviso e approvato da migliaia di persone. Molte però anche le critiche arrivate in coda allo stesso post, come avvenne l’anno scorso dopo la manifestazione delle femministe.

    «Giù le mani dal grande Indro Montanelli. Che vergogna la sinistra, viva la libertà», interviene il leader della Lega Matteo Salvini. Ma i Sentinelli non arretrano: «Dopo la barbara uccisione di George Floyd a Minneapolis le proteste sorte spontaneamente in ogni città con milioni di persone in piazza e l’abbattimento a Bristol della statua in bronzo dedicata al mercante e commerciante di schiavi africani #Edward_Colston da parte dei manifestanti antirazzisti di #Black_Lives_Matter - scrivono ancora su Fb - richiamiamo con forza ogni amministrazione comunale a ripensare ai simboli del proprio territorio e a quello che rappresentano».

    Della richiesta si farà portatrice Diana De Marchi, consigliera comunale del Pd, che potrebbe chiedere il dibattito in aula a Palazzo Marino. «Ne parlerò con il gruppo quando riceveremo la richiesta - spiega De Marchi - Certo, sarebbe tema della mia commissione e la storia tra Montanelli e una giovanissima donna eritrea così descritta era una brutta pagina per i diritti. Ma devo anche andare a ricostruire la proposta della statua, come era stata valutata, perché molti di noi non c’erano a quel tempo e nemmeno io». Sulla discussione in consiglio è d’accordo anche Alessandro Giungi (Pd): «In aula discutiamo di tutto e se ci sarà una richiesta in tal senso, perché non dovremmo farlo? Ma non ho mai detto di essere per lo spostamento della statua. Montanelli è stato comunque un protagonista della vita cittadina».

    L’idea piace ad Arci Milano che si associa alla richiesta dei Sentinelli, mentre una bocciatura netta arriva dal capogruppo Pd in Comune, Filippo Barberis: «Sono molto, molto lontano culturalmente da questi tentativi di moralizzazione della storia e della memoria che trovo sbagliati e pericolosi. Atteggiamenti che hanno a che fare più con la categoria della censura che della riflessione critica e che hanno ben poco a che vedere con la sensibilità della nostra città che da sempre si confronta con le contraddizioni e la complessità della società e dei suoi personaggi. Montanelli ha commesso un errore grave, imperdonabile. Se questo fosse però il criterio per rimuovere statue o cambiare il nome alle vie dovremmo rivedere il 50% della toponomastica mondiale. Sarebbe inoltre poco comprensibile dedicare tempo all’argomento in Comune in questa delicatissima fase dove in testa e a cuore dovremmo avere, e a tutti gli effetti abbiamo, ben altre priorità e progetti».

    Protesta anche l’ex vicesindaco e vice presidente di Regione Lombardia Riccardo De Corato, che fu tra i promotori della installazione della statua: «Continuano gli attacchi alla memoria di Indro Montanelli, uno dei più grandi giornalisti, che con il suo lavoro ha dato lustro all’Italia. La ’Floyd mania’ sta offuscando le menti di qualche consigliere comunale: confondere l’omicidio di un povero uomo di colore con la statura culturale di Montanelli, ferito per le sue idee liberali dalle Brigate Rosse, e voler addirittura aprire un dibattito in consiglio comunale è vergognoso».

    https://milano.repubblica.it/cronaca/2020/06/11/news/statua_montanelli_sentinelli_milano-258873542

    #statue #Italie #colonialisme #histoire #passé_colonial #colonisation #viol #racisme #toponymie_politique #toponyie #monument #mémoire #symboles #Erythrée #Ethiopie #histoire_coloniale

    –—

    A #Palerme aussi une rue dédiée à Montelli avait été détournée:


    https://seenthis.net/messages/829668

    • Avessimo la coda di paglia, scriveremmo un pippotto per raccontare la nostra storia, il nostro modo di fare politica rappresentato da 5 anni che sono lì a dimostrare chi siamo, cosa siamo, come agiamo.

      Invece ci limitiamo a scrivere che la nostra proposta civile, fatta in settimana alla luce del sole proprio per permettere una discussione pubblica, non contemplava altro.

      Piuttosto la violenza verbale fatta dal pensiero unico mainstream che ci ha voluto in modo caricaturale descrivere come dei talebani, ha portato il dibattito su un livello volutamente distorto.
      Mentre sui social tantissime persone si riconoscevano nella nostra richiesta, sui media è passato per giorni la voce di una sola campana.
      Come se improvvisamente avessimo toccato un nervo scoperto.
      Polito, Severgnini, Battista, Cerasa, Cazzullo, Levi, Ferrara, Mattia Feltri, Lerner, Cruciani, Travaglio, Scanzi, Gomez, Padellaro, Parenzo tutti maschi, bianchi, benestanti, eterosessuali a discutere se sia stato o meno legittimo per Montanelli stuprare una 12enne. Non ci viene in mente un altro Paese che si definisce democratico e civile, insorgere così compattamente quando si mette in discussione il suo diritto alla misoginia.

      Ci fosse mai stata questa levata di scudi bipartisan da parti delle «grandi firme», sulla piaga che non conosce fine della violenza sulle donne, figlia di una cultura patriarcale della quale era intriso il pensiero anche del Signor Montanelli.
      Ci fosse mai stata questa indignazione di massa sulla quotidiana strage nel mar Mediterraneo che affoga il futuro di donne, uomini, bambini, bambine.

      Bambine, quelle che ancora in Africa come nel 1935 subiscono la violenza sopraffatrice di chi si sente in diritto di infibularle, darle in sposa, comprarle.

      Indro Montanelli ancora nel 2000 rivendicava il suo agire da soldato mandato in Eritrea in un’azione del Regime colonizzatore.

      Noi la lettera mandata a Sindaco e Consiglio Comunale la rifaremmo anche ora.
      Perché non c’è nessuna violenza nell’esprimere il proprio pensiero in modo trasparente.
      Quel parco di Milano deve liberarsi di un nome che non fa onore alla nostra città.
      E peggio di una vernice rossa c’è chi senza entrare nel merito della nostra proposta preferisce buttarla in caciara vendendoci come degli integralisti.

      https://www.facebook.com/isentinellidimilano/posts/1563182763864138

  • Zurück in die Diktatur

    Seit Jahren ist Eritrea das wichtigste Herkunftsland von Asylsuchenden in der Schweiz. Weil die Behörden die Asylpraxis schrittweise verschärft haben, müssten immer mehr Eritreerinnen und Eritreer in ihre Heimat zurückkehren. Freiwillig aber geht fast niemand und unfreiwillige Rückkehrer akzeptiert das eritreische Regime nicht. Deshalb werden die politischen Forderungen immer lauter, die sogenannte «freiwillige Rückkehr» zu fördern und mehr abgewiesene Asylsuchende zur Ausreise zu bewegen. Doch was erwartet die Menschen, die zurückkehren müssen? Weshalb kehrt überhaupt jemand in eine Diktatur zurück? Und wie schlimm ist die Menschenrechtslage in Eritrea wirklich?

    «Eritreer, die eine Wegweisung erhalten haben, können jederzeit freiwillig zurückkehren», sagte 2019 Mario Gattiker, der Chef des Schweizer Staatssekretariats für Migration (SEM). Jedes Asylgesuch werde sorgfältig und einzeln geprüft, ergänzt ein SEM-Sprecher auf Anfrage. Wegweisungen würden nur ausgesprochen, wenn aus Sicht des SEM keine konkrete Bedrohung bestehe.

    Unsere Recherche zeigt aber, dass die Schweizer Behörden nicht wissen, was mit Rückkehrern in Eritrea passiert. Im aktuellsten Eritrea-Bericht des SEM steht: «Eine Überwachung zurückgekehrter ehemaliger Asylbewerber ist nicht möglich. Dies bedeutet, dass es an wesentlichen Informationsquellen (…) fehlt.» Und: «Eine Quelle besagt, dass Gerüchten zufolge einige inhaftiert sind und andere nicht. In den meisten Fällen gibt es jedoch keinerlei Informationen.» Das SEM kann keinen einzigen dokumentierten Fall eines illegal ausgereisten Eritreers vorlegen, der nach seiner Rückkehr unbehelligt geblieben ist.

    Jetzt hat REFLEKT in Zusammenarbeit mit dem Online-Magazin Republik erstmals fünf Geschichten von Rückkehrerinnen und Rückkehrern rekonstruiert. Ihre Reisen sind auf der folgenden Karte dargestellt.

    Zwei der Rückkehrer, Tesfay und Yonas (beide Namen geändert), erhielten in der Schweiz kein Asyl, kehrten nach Eritrea zurück und flohen dann ein zweites Mal aus ihrer Heimat. Tesfay sagt, dass er nach der Rückkehr ein offizielles Aufgebot erhalten habe und aufgrund von Erfahrungsberichten davon ausgehen musste, inhaftiert, gefoltert oder anderswie bestraft zu werden. Yonas sagt, dass er am Flughafen von Mitarbeitern des Geheimdienstes abgeholt wurde, die ihn mit dem Auto in eine circa zwanzig Fahrtminuten entfernte Wohnung brachten. Dort sei er in einer Einzelzelle festgehalten, mehrmals verhört sowie gefoltert worden.

    Solche Fälle dürfte es eigentlich nicht geben. Die Schweizer Behörden gehen davon aus, dass weggewiesene Eritreerinnen und Eritreer zurückkehren können, ohne in ihrer Heimat eine unverhältnismässige Strafe fürchten zu müssen. Die Erzählungen der Rückkehrer widersprechen dieser Annahme. Sie zeigen, dass eine Rückkehr nach Eritrea problematisch sein kann. Und: Wenn Yonas tatsächlich gefoltert wurde, hätte die Schweiz mit seiner Wegweisung wohl das Folterverbot nach Artikel 3 der Europäischen Menschenrechtskonvention verletzt. Doch ob sein Fall jemals juristisch aufgearbeitet wird, ist unklar. Weil das Staatssekretariat für Migration seinen Fall für abgeschlossen hält, müsste er auf illegalem Weg in die Schweiz einreisen, um von den Behörden angehört zu werden.

    Unsere Recherche wirft dringliche Fragen auf:

    Wissen die Schweizer Behörden genug über die Lage in Eritrea, um einschätzen zu können, wie gefährlich eine Rückkehr ist?
    Wie will die Schweiz abgewiesene Asylsuchende dazu bringen, zurückzukehren, wenn sie keinen einzigen Fall einer problemlosen Rückkehr vorlegen kann?
    Ist es unter diesen Umständen vertretbar, die selbstständige Rückkehr zu fördern?
    Und weshalb weiss die Schweiz so wenig über ihre Rückkehrer, wenn es doch möglich ist, sie aufzuspüren?

    Nothilfe

    Immer mehr eritreische Asylsuchende erhalten einen negativen Entscheid und müssen mit Nothilfe über die Runden kommen. Sie dürfen keinen offiziellen Sprachkurs besuchen und dürfen nicht arbeiten. Sie sollen sich nicht integrieren und nicht integriert werden, denn aufgrund ihres negativen Asylentscheids sind sie in der Schweiz unerwünscht. In einigen Kantonen wird praktisch kein Geld an die BezügerInnen ausbezahlt, stattdessen erhalten sie Essen, Kleidung sowie Unterkunft und können medizinische Versorgung in Anspruch nehmen. In anderen Kantonen gibt es 6 bis 12 Franken pro Person und Tag.

    Im Kanton Bern gibt es 8 Franken. Die folgenden Bilder zeigen, was sich damit kaufen lässt:

    Trotz schwierigster Bedingungen harren viele abgewiesene Asylsuchenden aus Eritrea in der Schweiz aus oder reisen in andere europäische Länder weiter – nur ganz wenige kehren in ihre Heimat zurück.

    Rund 150 Eritreerinnen und Eritreern sind laut Staatssekretariat für Migration in den letzten drei Jahren selbstständig zurückgekehrt. Das SEM verweist auf diese Zahlen und sagt, dass eine freiwillige Rückkehr für abgewiesene Asylsuchende möglich ist. Die Statistik zeigt aber, dass nur wenige dieser Ausgereisten einen negativen Bescheid hatten und von der Nothilfe lebten. Die Rückkehrer sind nicht in erster Linie Personen, die gehen müssen, sondern solche, die bleiben könnten – ältere Personen zum Beispiel oder regimetreue Eritreerinnen und Eritreer aus der früheren Fluchtgeneration.

    Keiner der fünf Rückkehrer, deren Geschichten wir rekonstruieren konnten, ist wirklich freiwillig zurückgekehrt. Die meisten standen unter starkem psychischem Druck, einer hatte einen Suizidversuch hinter sich, zwei weitere hatten laut Beschreibungen von Augenzeugen schwere psychische Probleme.

    Von all den Personen mit Nothilfe, mit denen wir in der Schweiz gesprochen haben, konnte sich keine einzige eine Rückkehr in die Heimat vorstellen. Niemand weiss genau, was ihn oder sie bei einer Rückkehr erwarten würde, doch alle befürchten das Schlimmste. So auch Merhawit (Name geändert), die mit Nothilfe im Kanton Bern lebt:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-0AkqYYW8Iw&feature=emb_logo

    Die Vorstellung, dass abgewiesene Asylsuchende nach Eritrea zurückkehren, wenn man sie nur schlecht genug behandelt, scheint falsch zu sein. Die Zermürbungsstrategie der Schweiz funktioniert in diesem Fall nicht.

    Allein in den letzten drei Jahren sind rund 1500 Eritreerinnen und Eritreer unkontrolliert aus der Schweiz abgereist oder untergetaucht – zehn Mal mehr als selbständig nach Eritrea zurückgekehrt sind. Viele von ihnen sind etwa in Belgien gelandet, von wo aus sie versuchen, nach England weiterzureisen. Für die Schweiz geht die Rechnung auf: Seit 2017 haben die Abgänge eritreischer Asylsuchender deutlich zugenommen und die Ankünfte nahmen ab. Die Last der Schweizer Asylpolitik tragen andere Staaten – und all die Eritreerinnen und Eritreer, die nun durch Europa irren.

    Diktatur

    Seit Jahren diskutiert die Schweiz darüber, wie schlimm die Menschenrechtslage in Eritrea wirklich ist. Wer ins Land reist, kann weder Gefängnisse besuchen noch offen mit Betroffenen sprechen. Äussern sich Asylsuchende in Europa, heisst es, die müssten ja übertreiben, damit sie einen positiven Entscheid erhalten. Dieser Mangel an Quellen ohne Eigeninteresse hat zu einem Misstrauen gegenüber Informationen zu Eritrea geführt.

    Deshalb sind wir ins Nachbarland Äthiopien gereist, um mit Eritreern zu sprechen, die das Land vor Kurzem verlassen haben, die nicht nach Europa reisen wollen und die unabhängig vom Druck einer Asylbehörde oder einer Regierung erzählen können. Zehn Personen, die zwischen 2016 und 2019 geflohen sind, haben mit uns über ihr ehemaliges Leben, ihren Alltag, über Folter, Gefängnisse und den eritreischen Nationaldienst gesprochen.

    Die Hälfte unserer Interview-Partner ist nach dem Friedensabkommen zwischen Eritrea und Äthiopien ausgereist. Neun mussten während ihrer Zeit in Eritrea Gefängnisstrafen absitzen, die meisten sogar mehrere. Einige verschwanden während Jahren in einer Zelle – fast alle wurden Opfer körperlicher Gewalt. Kein einziger wurde von einem Gericht verurteilt. Keinem wurde gesagt, weshalb er ins Gefängnis muss und für wie lange.

    Die folgende Karte zeigt eine Auswahl von Gefängnissen in Eritrea und was unsere Interview-Partner dort erlebt haben:

    Anhand von Zeugenaussagen und Satellitenbildern konnten wir den exakten Standort eines der wichtigsten Gefängnisse in Eritrea ermitteln. Die folgenden Bilder zeigen hunderte Häftlinge im Innenhof von #Adi_Abeito, wenige Klilometer nördlich der Hauptstadt Asmara.

    Entgegen aller Hoffnungen hat sich die Lage in Eritrea auch nach dem Friedensabkommen mit Äthiopien im September 2018 nicht verbessert. Alle zehn Gesprächspartner sind sich einig, dass die systematischen Menschenrechtsverletzungen weitergehen. «Nach dem Friedensabkommen habe ich wie alle anderen darauf gewartet, dass sich etwas verändert», sagt Abraham (Name geändert), der 2019 geflohen ist. «Aber nichts ist passiert. Es war dasselbe wie zuvor: unlimitierter Nationaldienst, keine Verbesserungen. Also verlor ich die Hoffnung und verliess das Land.»

    Acht unserer zehn Gesprächspartner haben im obligatorischen Nationaldienst gedient, zwei sind vor der Rekrutierung geflohen. Alle acht waren dem militärischen Arm des Nationaldienstes zugeteilt, wobei nur vier tatsächlich in militärischen Funktionen eingesetzt wurden. Die anderen mussten Schiffe entladen oder Gebäude, Strassen und sonstige Infrastruktur bauen. Ihr monatlicher Lohn: zwischen 75 und 950 Nakfa – nach offiziellem Umrechnungskurs 5 bis 60 Franken.

    Der eritreische Nationaldienst werde als Mittel zur Arbeitskraftbeschaffung für das ganze Wirtschaftssystem eingesetzt, schreibt das Schweizer Bundesverwaltungsgericht in seinem Referenzurteil vom 10. Juli 2018. Seine Dauer sei willkürlich festgelegt sowie unabsehbar. Zudem komme es zu Misshandlungen und die Dienstverweigerung werde «rigoros bestraft».
    Das Fazit: Schickt die Schweiz Menschen nach Eritrea zurück, erwartet diese Zwangsarbeit.

    Das britische Upper Tribunal, auf welches sich das Schweizer Urteil in wichtigen Punkten stützt, hält fest, dass die Gefahr, dass jemand bei der Rückkehr in den Nationaldienst einbezogen wird, wohl nicht nur gegen das Zwangsarbeitsverbot, sondern auch gegen das Verbot unmenschlicher Behandlung nach Artikel 3 der EMRK verstösst. Damit wäre der Nationaldienst ein Wegweisungshindernis.

    Dennoch kommt das Schweizer Bundesverwaltungsgericht zum Schluss, dass in bestimmten Fällen eine Wegweisung von eritreischen Asylsuchenden möglich ist – weil es sich in Eritrea nicht um eine «krasse Verletzung» des Zwangsarbeitsverbots handle. Darüber, ob der Entscheid des Schweizer Gerichts rechtlich haltbar ist, müssten nun der Europäische Gerichtshof für Meschenrechte und der UNO-Ausschuss gegen Folter entscheiden. Vor beiden Institutionen sind Fälle weggewiesener eritreischer Asylsuchender hängig.

    https://reflekt.ch/eritrea
    #Erythrée #COI #asile #migrations #réfugiés #dictature #aide_d'urgence #déboutés #Suisse #retour_au_pays #renvois #expulsions #droits_humains #prisons #prisons_secrètes

    –------

    Traduit aussi en tigrinya :
    https://reflekt.ch/wp-content/uploads/2020/02/Teil-1-Tigrinya_Lay.pdf

  • Ethiopia : Unaccompanied Eritrean Children at Risk. Asylum Policy Changes Threaten Eritreans’ Rights

    The Ethiopian government’s changes to asylum procedures for Eritreans undermines their access to asylum and denies unaccompanied children necessary protection. The Ethiopian authorities should ensure that all Eritreans have the right to apply for asylum and publicly announce changes to its asylum and camp management policies.

    In late January 2020, the Ethiopian government unofficially changed its asylum policy, which for years granted all Eritrean asylum seekers refugee status as a group. Staff from Ethiopia’s Agency for Refugees and Returnees Affairs (ARRA) have only registered some categories of new arrivals at the Eritrea border, excluding others, notably unaccompanied children, the United Nations and aid groups say. Ethiopia’s refusal to register these asylum seekers could force them to return to abusive situations in violation of international refugee law.

    “Ethiopia has long welcomed tens of thousands of Eritreans fleeing persecution each year,” said Laetitia Bader, Horn of Africa director at Human Rights Watch. “With no letup in repression in Eritrea, the Ethiopian government shouldn’t be denying protection to Eritrean nationals, particularly unaccompanied children.”

    Each year, thousands of Eritrean secondary school students, some still under 18, are conscripted into the country’s abusive indefinite national service program. National service is supposed to last 18 months, but the government often extends it to well over a decade. National service hampers children’s access to education and family life.

    To apply for asylum and gain official refugee status, Eritreans need to register with Ethiopia’s refugee agency at “collection centers” when they cross the border. After registration, many then move into 1 of 6 refugee camps, 4 in the Tigray region. A smaller number live as urban refugees. With official refugee status, Eritreans are eligible for services and protection.

    In July 2018, Ethiopia and Eritrea signed a peace agreement, ending two decades of armed conflict and hostility, but it has not led to improvements in the human rights situation in Eritrea. In 2019, about 6,000 Eritreans arrived in Ethiopia every month. Ethiopia currently hosts 171,876 Eritrean refugees and asylum seekers, over a third of Eritrea’s global refugee population. According to the United Nations refugee agency, UNHCR, as of December, 44 percent of Eritrean refugees in the Tigray refugee camps were children.

    In January 2019, Ethiopia’s parliament adopted progressive revisions to its refugee law that allow refugees and asylum seekers to obtain work permits and access primary education, receiving significant international acclaim. However, in January 2020, for reasons not made public, the government began to exclude certain categories of new arrivals from Eritrea from registering, including unaccompanied children.

    Denying people access to asylum is inhumane and unlawful, Human Rights Watch said. It may violate the fundamental principle of non-refoulement, which bars returning refugees or asylum seekers to a country where they face threats to their lives or freedom or the risk of torture. This principle also applies to indirect acts that have the effect of returning people to harm – for example, when uncertainty leads people to believe that they cannot apply for asylum and have no practical option but to return.

    The refusal to register unaccompanied children may compel them to return to abusive situations, Human Rights Watch said. Under international standards, governments should prioritize children’s access to asylum and offer children, particularly those who are unaccompanied, special care and protection.

    As of December, UNHCR said 27 percent of the Eritrean children arriving in the Tigray refugee camps were unaccompanied. About 30 unaccompanied or separated children arrived every day. Previously, Ethiopia had granted unaccompanied Eritrean children immediate care arrangements, access to emergency education, and individual counseling, although those services were reportedly under significant strain.

    However, the authorities have not been registering unaccompanied children since late January, and these children are not entitled to protection services or refugee camp accommodations, leaving them to fend for themselves. An aid worker in the Tigray region said “If children are undocumented [i.e. unregistered], they don’t have access to food, shelter, protection, or any psychosocial support. That exposes them to many external risks, including exploitation.”

    Under Ethiopia’s 2019 Refugees Proclamation, the government recognizes refugees as people who meet both the 1951 Refugee Convention definition and the definition of the 1969 African Union Refugee Convention, which includes people fleeing “events seriously disturbing public order.” The proclamation states that the government can revoke group refugee determination, in consultation with UNHCR, by giving due consideration to the country of origin situation and publishing a directive.

    The Ethiopian government does not appear to have followed these guidelines. It has not published a directive to inform new arrivals, refugees, and humanitarian partners, including the UNHCR, of the new criteria for registration, appeal procedures if their claims are denied, alternative legal routes for new arrivals, and reasons for the changes. This uncertainty risks creating significant confusion and fear for Eritrean asylum seekers, Human Rights Watch said.

    On March 27, Human Rights Watch sent a letter with questions to Ethiopia’s refugee agency requesting a response on any changes to its policies or practice towards Eritrean refugees. No response has been received.

    UNHCR maintains its 2011 eligibility guidelines on Eritrea. The guidelines offer countries advice on how to assess protection needs of Eritrean asylum seekers, and the agency recently said at an immigration hearing in the United Kingdom that “until there is concrete evidence that fundamental, durable, and sustainable changes have occurred, these guidelines should be maintained.”

    The human rights situation in Eritrea remains dire and has not fundamentally changed since the 2018 peace agreement, making any shift in policy premature, Human Rights Watch said.

    The Ethiopian authorities announced in early March that it would close the Hitsats refugee camp in the Tigray region, where 26,652 Eritreans live, as of mid-April, according to UNHCR. That includes about 1,600 unaccompanied children who are receiving care, UNHCR said.

    Refugees and aid workers told Human Rights Watch that the timeline and procedures for the camp to close remain unclear. The deputy director general of Ethiopia’s refugee agency recently told the media that the relocations, reportedly on hold because of Covid-19, could begin by late April. The lack of clarity and the asylum policy change make it difficult to assess the impact of the camp’s closure and plan for viable, safe alternatives, including for unaccompanied children, Human Rights Watch said.

    An Eritrean man who was unlawfully imprisoned for seven years in Eritrea and now is in Hitsats camp said, “No one explains clearly our rights, where we go, what is the time frame, all these details. We are very worried – we already have our own problems. In addition to our everyday stresses and difficulties, this is adding more.”

    “Unaccompanied Eritrean children who seek asylum in Ethiopia face an impossible choice between lack of legal protection and services and uncertainty inside Ethiopia, or the risk of serious abuse if they return home,” Bader said. “Ethiopia should continue to show leadership in its treatment of Eritreans, with international support, and ensure that even during the Covid-19 crisis, it continues to protect asylum seekers from needless harm.”

    https://www.hrw.org/news/2020/04/21/ethiopia-unaccompanied-eritrean-children-risk

    #Ethiopie #réfugiés #réfugiés_érythréens #Erythrée #asile #migrations #réfugiés #enfants #enfance #MNA #mineurs_non_accompagnés #Hitsats

    ping @karine4 @isskein

  • #Danakali done first phase of Eritrea potash project

    Australia’s Danakali (ASX, LON:DNK) has finished the first phase of development of its world-class Colluli potash project in Eritrea, Africa, which takes the company a step closer to the construction phase and then onto production in 2022.

    The Perth-based miner is now moving to Phase 2, which includes finalizing geotechnical work, buying critical equipment such as a reverse osmosis plant and looking into optimization opportunities.

    Colluli, a 50:50 joint venture between Danakali and the Eritrean National Mining Corporation (ENAMCO), has been called “a game changer” for Eritrea’s economy, as is expected to become one of the world’s most significant and lowest-cost sources of sulphate of potash (SOP), a premium grade fertilizer.

    “The government will benefit from the longer-term development of the project, and the expected significant boost to royalties, taxation and exports, and from jobs and skills and economic development of the region,” chief executive Niels Wage told MINING.COM last year.

    The development of the Colluli potash projects coincides with the move towards diplomatic relations between the once feuding countries of Eritrea and Ethiopia, which officially declared peace in July 2018.
    Welcome boost

    A United Nations report published last year suggested that Colluli could significantly boost the economy of Eritrea, a country that, until 2018, was on the UN’s sanctions list.

    The document estimated that Colluli would contribute 3% of the country’s GDP by 2021 and 50% of the nation’s exports by 2030, while providing 10,000 direct and indirect local jobs.

    The report also identified how the mine could help Eritrea advance its sustainable development agenda, which are 13 priority Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These include: No poverty, zero hunger, quality education, gender equality, clean water and sanitation, sustainable economic growth and decent work, industry, innovation and infrastructure, reduced inequalities, climate action, peace, justice and strong institutions and partnerships for the SDGs.

    In the initial phase of operation, Wage said, Colluli would produce more than 472,000 tonnes a year of Sulphate of Potash. Annual output could rise to almost 944,000 tonnes if Danakali decides to go ahead with a second phase of development, as the project has a possible 200-year plus mine-life.

    The asset has the potential to produce other fertilizer products, such as Sulphate of Potash Magnesium (SOP-M), muriate of potash (MOP) and gypsum, along with rock salt. There is also potential for kieserite and mag chloride to be commercialized with minimal further processing required.

    https://www.mining.com/danakalis-first-phase-of-eritrean-potash-project-done
    #extractivisme #Erythrée #mines #Colluli_potash_project #Eritrean_National_Mining_Corporation (#ENAMCO) #Sulfate #fertilisants #industrie_agro-alimentaire #Sulfate_de_potassium

    La belle rhétorique du #développement... (sic), voire des #SDGs (#sustainable_development_goals)

    –-> ATTENTION : site de propagande commerciale... donc pas du tout mais pas du tout critique vis-à-vis de ce projet...

    ping @daphne @albertocampiphoto @reka

  • Refugee : The Eritrean exodus
    Série en 5 parties

    Follow Chris Cotter, an American traveler, as he explores a common migration path through Ethiopia and into Israel, tracking the plight of Eritrean refugees. Chris and his crew visit several refugee camps, including the never-before-documented Afar region. The refugees tell stories of oppression, torture, and survival. Searching for solutions, Chris speaks to various NGOs and experts, including Assistant Secretary of State, Anne Richard. The outlook is bleak, but the spirit of the Eritrean refugees is hard to ignore.

    https://www.theeritreanexodus.com

    Part 1 :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YjouQhlllLY

    Part 2 :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0WHlK12IOG8

    Part 3 :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WkDeHGb8uWA

    Part 4 :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NqP2DQe34wo&t=36s

    Part 5 :
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gqS6AadI4rk


    #réfugiés #réfugiés_érythréens #asile #migrations #Erythrée #Ethiopie #camps_de_réfugiés #frontières #histoire #frontière #indépendance #guerre_d'indépendance #Isaias_Afwerki #service_militaire #dictature #prisons #prisons_souterraines #sous-sol #souterrain #torture #enfants #Shire #Aysaita #Adi_Harush #Mai-Aini #Hitsas #viol #trafic_d'êtres_humains #Sinaï #kidnapping #esclavage #esclavage_moderne #néo-esclavage #rançon #Israël
    #film #film_documentaire #série

    –-> Très nord-américain dans le style, mais des images des camps de réfugiés en Ethiopie très parlantes et que je n’avais jamais vues...

    ping @isskein @karine4

  • Farine de teff : main-basse sur une tradition africaine

    Pendant plus de quinze ans, une société néerlandaise a fait prospérer un brevet qu’elle avait déposé en Europe sur la farine de teff, une céréale servant d’aliment de base en Éthiopie et en Érythrée depuis des siècles, en dépit des protestations de nombre d’ONG qui considèrent cette pratique comme un vol des cultures traditionnelles, notamment africaines. Enquête.

    C’est une crêpe épaisse couleur sable, sur laquelle les cuisinières dispersent les purées, les viandes mijotées, les ragoûts. Des lambeaux déchirés avec la pince des doigts servent à porter le repas à la bouche. Depuis des siècles, c’est ainsi que l’on mange en Éthiopie et en Érythrée : sur une injera, une grande galette spongieuse et acidulée fabriquée à base de teff, une graine minuscule aux propriétés nutritives exceptionnelles, riche en protéines et sans gluten. Depuis trois mille ans, on la récolte en épi dans des brassées de fines et hautes herbes vertes sur les hauts-plateaux abyssins.

    Mais une cargaison de teff expédiée en 2003 aux Pays-Bas a aussi fait la fortune d’une petite société privée néerlandaise. Dirigée par l’homme d’affaires Johannes « Hans » Turkensteen et le chercheur Jans Roosjen, cette structure baptisée à l’époque Soil & Crop Improvements (S&C) a en effet prospéré sur un brevet européen s’appropriant l’utilisation de cette « super céréale », alors que le marché du bio et des aliments sans gluten connaissait une expansion progressive.

    Un voyage d’affaires

    Tout avait commencé quelques mois plus tôt par un voyage de Hans Turkensteen à Addis-Abeba. Se prévalant du soutien de l’Université de sciences appliquées de Larenstein, l’homme d’affaires avait signé, en mars 2003, un mémorandum avec l’Organisation éthiopienne de la recherche agricole, l’EARO, accordant à sa société la livraison de 1 440 kg de graines de teff, prétendument destinées à l’expérimentation scientifique.

    « Turkensteen a fait croire à un accord mutuellement bénéfique pour toutes les parties : un meilleur rendement du teff pour les agriculteurs éthiopiens et un programme de lutte contre la pauvreté pour l’université, raconte le journaliste éthiopien Zecharias Zelalem, qui a mené sur le sujet une grande enquête pour le quotidien éthiopien Addis Standard. Il a même utilisé le prétexte de la grande famine de 1984 pour convaincre les signataires, affirmant que si les paysans éthiopiens avaient eu un meilleur teff à l’époque, le désastre n’aurait pas eu lieu. »

    Or, parallèlement, S&C a déposé auprès de l’agence néerlandaise des brevets une demande de protection des « méthodes de transformation » du teff ; un brevet finalement accordé le 25 janvier 2005, contraignant tous ceux qui souhaiteraient produire de la farine de teff ou des produits issus de la graine éthiopienne à obtenir une licence auprès d’eux, contre le paiement de royalties. Au bas du document figurait cette mention pour le moins étonnante pour une farine utilisée depuis des millénaires : « Inventeur : Jans Roosjen ».

    « Étonnement, les autorités éthiopiennes n’ont pas admis - ou n’ont pas voulu admettre - la supercherie, se désole Zecharias Zelalem. Même après que l’Université de Larenstein a exprimé des doutes et commandé un rapport d’enquête sur l’accord et même après que les Néerlandais ont reçu un "Captain Hook Award" [une récompense infamante baptisée d’après le pirate de dessin animé Capitaine Crochet et décernée chaque année par une coalition d’ONG, la Coalition contre la biopiratie, ndlr] en 2004, pour leur exploit en matière de biopiraterie. »

    Sans autres entraves que les protestations et la mauvaise publicité, les deux associés ont donc continué leur moisson de brevets. Les années suivantes, ils ont d’abord obtenu une licence auprès de l’Office européen des brevets, lui ouvrant le droit de faire des demandes auprès des agences de protection de la propriété intellectuelle d’Allemagne, d’Australie, d’Italie et du Royaume-Uni.

    « Les plus étonnant, explique l’avocat allemand Anton Horn, spécialiste de la propriété intellectuelle, est que le bureau européen des brevets leur aient accordé un brevet exactement tel qu’ils l’avaient demandé. C’est très rare. D’habitude, on fait une demande plutôt large au départ, afin que le périmètre puisse être réduit pendant son examen par le bureau des brevets. Là, non. Il a été accepté tel quel, alors que, pour ma part, il m’a suffi de trente minutes pour comprendre que quelque chose clochait dans ce brevet. » Du reste, ajoute-t-il, celui-ci a été refusé par les agences des États-Unis et du Japon.

    Treize années de bénéfices

    Pourtant, pendant les treize années suivantes, personne n’est venu s’opposer à ce que Zecharias Zelalem considère comme « un pillage des traditions éthiopiennes et un pur et simple vol des paysans éthiopiens ». C’est la curiosité de la presse éthiopienne qui a commencé à perturber des affaires alors florissantes.

    Toutefois, de faillites opportunes en changements de noms, la compagnie néerlandaise, rebaptisée entre-temps ProGrain International, a tout fait pour conserver les droits acquis par son tour de passe-passe juridique. Elle a continué à développer son activité, au point que Turkensteen a pu, par exemple, célébrer en grande pompe, en 2010, la production de sa millième tonne de farine de teff dans ses usines d’Espagne, de Roumanie et des Pays-Bas. À raison de 100 euros le kilo, selon le compte effectué en 2012 par l’hebdomadaire éthiopien Addis Fortune, son bénéfice a été considérable, alors que l’Éthiopie n’a touché, en tout en pour tout, qu’environ 4 000 euros de dividendes, selon l’enquête du journaliste Zecharias Zelalem.

    Mais l’aventure a fini par atteindre ses limites. Un jour de 2017, saisi par un ami éthiopien devenu directeur du Bureau éthiopien de la propriété intellectuelle, l’avocat Anton Horn a d’abord suggéré aux associés néerlandais de ProGrain International, par courrier, d’abandonner, au moins en Allemagne, leurs droits sur la farine de teff. Mais le duo néerlandais n’a pas répondu. Puis une société ayant acheté une licence à la société de Turkensteen et Roosjen a attaqué le brevet néerlandais devant un tribunal de La Haye, refusant dorénavant de lui payer des royalties. Pari gagné : le 7 décembre 2018, la justice lui a donné raison et « annulé » le brevet, estimant qu’il n’était ni « innovant » ni « inventif », tandis que, simultanément, sur ses propres deniers, Anton Horn a contesté le brevet en Allemagne devant les tribunaux et obtenu, là aussi, son annulation. Deux coups portés au cœur de la machine industrielle des Néerlandais, après quinze ans sans anicroche.

    Abandon progressif

    Sollicités par RFI, ni la société détentrice des brevets restants ni Hans Turkensteen n’ont souhaité donné leur version de l’histoire. Mais le duo néerlandais semble avoir abandonné la partie et renoncé à ses droits. Annulé aux Pays-Bas et en Allemagne, le brevet reste cependant valide aujourd’hui dans plusieurs pays européens. « Mais depuis août 2019, le non-paiement des frais de renouvellement du brevet devrait conduire logiquement, durant l’été 2020, à l’annulation de celui-ci dans tous les pays de l’espace européen », espère Anton Horn.

    Cette appropriation commerciale d’une tradition africaine par une société occidentale n’est pas un cas unique. En 1997, la société américaine RiceTec avait obtenu un brevet sur le riz basmati, interdisant de fait la vente aux États-Unis de riz basmati cultivé dans ses pays d’origine, l’Inde et le Pakistan. « En 2007, la société pharmaceutique allemande Schwabe Pharmaceuticals obtenait un brevet sur les vertus thérapeutiques de la fleur dite pélargonium du Cap, originaire d’Afrique du Sud et connue pour ses propriétés antimicrobiennes et expectorantes, ajoute François Meienberg, de l’ONG suisse ProSpecieRara, qui milite pour la protection de la diversité génétique et culturelle. Brevet finalement annulé en 2010 après une bataille judiciaire. Et c’est aujourd’hui le rooibos (un thé rouge, ndlr), lui aussi sud-africain, qui fait l’objet d’une bataille similaire. »

    Des négociations internationales ont bien été engagées pour tenter de définir un cadre normatif qui enrayerait la multiplication des scandales de vol de traditions ancestrales par des prédateurs industriels. Mais elles n’ont pour l’instant débouché sur rien de significatif. Le problème est que, d’une part, « tous les pays ne protègent pas les traditions autochtones de la même manière, explique François Meierberg. Les pays scandinaves ou la Bolivie, par exemple, prennent cette question au sérieux, mais ce sont des exemples rares. » L’autre problème est que nombre d’États industrialisés refusent d’attenter à la sainte loi de la « liberté du commerce ». Au prix, du coup, de la spoliation des plus démunis.

    http://www.rfi.fr/fr/afrique/20200212-farine-teff-main-basse-une-tradition-africaine
    #teff #farine #alimentation #céréale #céréales #agriculture #Afrique #tef #injera #Pays-Bas #brevet #industrie_agro-alimentaire #mondialisation #dynamiques_des_suds #ressources_pédagogiques #prédation #géographie_culturelle #culture #Hans_Turkensteen #Turkensteen #Jans_Roosjen #Soil_&_Crop_Improvements (#S&C) #brevet #propriété_intellectuelle #gluten #bio #EARO #licence #loyalties #Université_de_Larenstein #Captain_Hook_Award #biopiraterie #pillage #vol #ProGrain_International #justice #innovation #appropriation_commerciale #RiceTec #riz #riz_basmati #basmati #Inde #Pakistan #Schwabe_Pharmaceuticals #industrie_pharamceutique #big_pharma #multinationales #mondialisation #globalisation

    L’injera, plat cuisiné dans la #Corne_de_l'Afrique, notamment #Erythrée #Ethiopie :


    https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Injera

    ping @reka @odilon @karine4 @fil @albertocampiphoto

  • Eritrea: dittatura sempre più feroce e i bimbi sempre più affamati

    Nel suo rapporto del 3 dicembre 2019, il Fondo delle Nazioni Unite per l’infanzia (UNICEF) esprime serie preoccupazioni per lo stato nutrizionale dei bambini sotto i 5 anni in Eritrea.

    Secondo l’UNICEF il 60 per cento dei piccoli eritrei è sottopeso, malnutrito. Dati recenti esatti non sono disponibili, in quanto il regime di Isais Afewerki, presidente del piccolo Paese nel Corno d’Africa, non rilascia dati aggiornati; non si deve dunque escludere che gli estremi di UNICEF siano sottostimati.

    Non si sa quanti nuclei familiari e/o minori necessitano di assistenza. Infatti nel suo rapporto UNICEF precisa per entrambe le categorie: “dati non disponibili”.

    Tuttavia dalle informazioni a disposizione di UNICEF si evince che i piccoli eritrei stanno peggio dei loro coetanei sud sudanesi. Il che è tutto dire, in quanto in Sud Sudan si consuma un sanguinoso conflitto interno dal 2013. Stanno anche peggio dei bambini dello Zimbabwe, dove oltre la metà della popolazione necessità di assistenza umanitaria per la grave recessione e i cambiamenti climatici che hanno messo in ginocchio l’economia del Paese. Gli altri Stati sono più attenti alle necessità della gente e malgrado le difficoltà e situazioni non facili, i governi cercano di collaborare con le organizzazioni internazionali e /o con le associazioni non governative.

    Gran parte della popolazione, specie nelle campagne vive in povertà. Gli anziani fanno davvero fatica a coltivare i campi. Le attrezzature non sono tra le più recenti, anzi. I giovani, quelli rimasti nella ex colonia italiana, sono costretti a prestare il servizio militare/civile e dunque non possono in alcun modo aiutare la famiglia. Né per quanto concerne il lavoro nei campi e tanto meno economicamente: con il soldo percepito non riescono nemmeno acquistare 1 ½ chilogrammi di carne al mese.

    Una decina di anni fa, grazie a un’inchiesta di OXFAM, il raccolto di una famiglia era sufficiente per appena 5-6 mesi, ovviamnte se le messe erano abbondanti. Per il resto dell’anno bisogna comprare il cibo. Con quali soldi? Non sempre i familiari e amici emigrati all’estero riescono a dare una mano ai congiunti rimasti a casa. Insomma, il popolo continua a soffrire. Il trattato di pace con l’Etiopia, l’acerimmo nemico storico, non ha portato i cambiamenti promessi dal dittatore.

    Il servizio militare/civile non è stato rivisto, i giovani sono sempre costretti a arruolarsi per un tempo indeterminato. La Costituzione non è ancora stata proposta alla popolazione e non si parla nemmeno di elezioni. Anzi, le maglie del regime si sono ristrette maggiormente durante lo scorso anno con i sequestro di ospedali e presidi medici di proprietà della Chiesa cattolica. Molti di questi erano situati in aree remote e depresse, dove è quasi impossibile trovare altri medici.

    Con la confisca di queste strutture, la popolazione residente ha perso importanti punti di riferimento, in quanto sacerdoti e suore erano sempre pronti a tendere la mano ai più bisognosi e poveri.

    Dopo il sequestro di 29 presidi medici, il regime fascista al potere in Eritrea si è appropriato anche di alcune scuole della Chiesa, frequentate per lo più da figli di famiglie disagiate.

    Gli abitanti, già in difficoltà, in questi ultimi anni devono combattere anche con i cambiamenti climatici: inondazioni, siccità ed ora in molte zone devone fare anche il conto con l’invasione delle locuste che divorano tutto ciò che trovano lungo il loro percorso.

    L’oppressione continua in ogni dove. Pochi giorni fa è stato brutalmente ucciso un giovane nel centro della città di Mendefera, dove era costretto a prestare il servizio civile. Si chiamava Shewit Yacob, orfano di un combattente e la madre è disabile.

    Shewit si era allontanato dal servizio senza permesso per andare dalla mamma anziana e bisognosa di aiuto Al suo ritorno è stato arrestato, perchè considerato un disertore. Il giovane è riuscito a scappare, ma lo hanno inseguito, gli hanno sparato, gli uomini di Isaias lo hanno ammazzato. Un ordine del regime: ai disertori si spara a vista.

    E proprio il 4 febbraio l’ambasciatore degli Stati membri dell’UE e quello della Gran Bretagna si trovavano in quella zona insieme alle autorità eritree per ispezionare il primo tratto della strada Nefasit e Dekamhare, che una volta terminata dovrebbe far parte della più grande arteria stradale che connette Massawa con il confine etiopico. L’Unione Europea ha stanziato 20 milioni di euro dal Fondo Fiduciario per l’Africa per la realizzazione dell’infrastruttura dopo la firma del trattato di pace tra Asmara e Addis Ababa. La nuova strada dovrebbe contribuire allo sviluppo economico e commerciale, creare nuovi posti di lavoro. Il progetto è stato implementato grazie a un accordo con UNOPS (Ufficio delle Nazioni Unite per i Servizi e i Progetti).

    https://www.africa-express.info/2020/02/10/eritrea-dittatura-sempre-piu-feroce-e-i-bimbi-sempre-piu-affamati
    #Erythrée #dictature #enfants #rapport #UNICEF #enfance #alimentation #nutrition #faim #données #statistiques #chiffres #information #pauvreté #service_militaire #oppression #Shewit_Yacob

    • Eritrea
      –-> fiche de l’UNICEF

      Eritrea is characterized by harsh climatic conditions, including cyclical drought, which affects groundwater resources, and flooding during rainy seasons. These events exacerbate the vulnerability of communities, making it difficult for families to fully recover from the effects of one emergency before another strikes. In recent years, the country’s climatic conditions have tested the coping capacities of the population, which is largely dependent (80 per cent) on subsistence agriculture.1 In 2010, half of all children under 5 years were stunted,2 and children are affected by sporadic outbreaks of diarrhoea and measles. The risk of landmines and explosive remnants of war continues to affect border communities, particularly children. Some 300,000 children are out of school, with the majority of out-of-school children from nomadic communities that are vulnerable to natural disasters.3 In July 2018, following the signing of the Joint Declaration of Peace and Friendship by Ethiopia and Eritrea, tensions softened significantly between the neighbouring countries, and in November 2018, the United Nations Security Council lifted sanctions against Eritrea.

      https://www.unicef.org/appeals/files/2019-HAC-Eritrea(1).pdf

      ping @karine4 @reka

  • Outrage over reports EU-funding linked to forced labour in Eritrea

    Human Rights Watch (HRW) has criticised the European Union over its funding of an infrastructure project in the brutal dictatorship of Eritrea.

    The scheme, which received €20 million from Brussels, was partially built by forced labour, according to the New York Times (https://www.nytimes.com/2020/01/08/world/europe/conscription-eritrea-eu.html).

    The newspaper also claimed the EU had no way of monitoring the project.

    “For the EU to rely on the government to do its monitoring, I think it is incredibly problematic, especially when obviously some of the issues the EU will be discussing with the government are around labour force,” said Laetitia Bader from HRW.

    “And as we know the government has quite bluntly said that it will continue to rely on national service conscripts.”

    The funding of the road project in Eritrea is part of the EU Trust Fund for Africa, created to address the #root_causes of migration.

    Yet Eritrea has an elaborate system of indefinite forced “national service” that makes people try to flee, especially youngsters.

    For the EU, democratic reforms are no longer a condition for financial aid.

    “The EU has made support for democracy a more prominent objective in its relations with African countries since the early 2000s, I would say,” said Christine Hackenesch from the German Development Institute.

    “And the EU has put more emphasis on developing its instruments to support democratic reforms. But the context now for democracy support in Africa and globally is a very different one because there is more of a competition of political models with China and other actors.”

    The EU Commission said that it was aware that conscripts were used for the road project - but that Brussels funded only material and equipment, not labour.

    https://www.euronews.com/2020/01/10/outrage-over-reports-eu-funding-linked-to-forced-labour-in-eritrea
    #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Trust_Fund #Erythrée #EU #UE #Trust_Fund_for_Africa #dictatures #travail_forcé #aide_au_développement #développement

    Ajouté à la métaliste externalisation :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/731749#message765340

    Et à la métaliste migrations/développement :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/733358#message768702

    ping @isskein @karine4

    @simplicissimus : j’ai fait un petit tour sur internet à la recherche du communiqué/rapport de HRW concernant cette histoire, mais j’ai pas trouvé... pas le temps de chercher plus... si jamais tu as un peu de temps pour voir ça serait très bienvenu... merci !

    • Sur la page officielle du Trust Fund for Africa... voici ce qui est marqué pour l’Erythrée...

      Eritrea is a major source of asylum seekers, who either remain in neighbouring countries of the region or move onwards towards Europe and elsewhere. Our main aim in the country is to create an enabling environment that improves economic opportunities available to young people, including through education, incentives for private entrepreneurship, vocational training or apprenticeship programmes.

      https://ec.europa.eu/trustfundforafrica/region/horn-africa/eritrea_en

    • Érythrée : une #plainte contre l’UE, complice de « travail forcé »

      Une plainte a été déposée ce mercredi, par un collectif d’Érythréens en exil, contre plusieurs institutions de l’Union européenne. En cause : le financement par l’UE, depuis l’année dernière, de la construction en Érythrée de routes pour lesquels sont employés, en toute connaissance de cause, des appelés du très controversé service militaire obligatoire.

      Les avocats de la Fondation droits de l’homme pour les Erythréens, basée aux Pays-Bas, avaient mis en garde l’Union européenne l’année dernière. Cette fois, face à l’indifférence des institutions de Bruxelles envers leurs arguments, ils sont passés à l’acte. Selon nos informations, une plainte d’une trentaine de pages a été déposée ce mercredi matin auprès du tribunal de grande instance d’Amsterdam. Cette plainte demande deux choses au tribunal : d’abord qu’il déclare le financement européen des chantiers de routes soutenus en Érythrée comme « illégal » ; ensuite, qu’il enjoigne l’Union européenne de le stopper.

      Dans leur plainte contre la Commission européenne et son Service d’action extérieure, les avocats Emil Jurjens et Tamilla Abdul-Alyeva s’appuient évidemment sur le droit international, qui sanctionne l’usage du travail forcé. Mais aussi sur les textes de l’UE elle-même, qui s’est engagée à refuser tout soutien à d’éventuelles « violations des droits de l’homme » dans sa coopération internationale. Et ce alors même que, dans son projet d’appui aux chantiers érythréens rendu public en 2018, elle a reconnu, noir sur blanc, que des conscrits du « service national » seraient bien employés sur les chantiers qu’elle finance, à hauteur de 20 millions d’euros en 2019 et de 60 millions d’euros en 2020.

      Pour sa défense, l’UE avait répondu par lettre, l’année dernière, à la mise en demeure des plaignants. Pour elle, d’une part l’Érythrée refuse toute « condition » préalable à sa coopération. Et d’autre part, elle fait valoir que ses financements ne sont pas destinés au gouvernement d’Asmara, mais à des sous-traitants, en l’occurrence des sociétés de construction érythréennes chargées de la mise en œuvre des travaux. Et elle assure qu’une « rémunération » est bel et bien versée aux employés.

      Les terribles conditions d’emploi des conscrits de l’armée érythréenne

      Mais pour prouver sa bonne foi, soulignent les plaignants, elle s’appuie sur la communication du gouvernement érythréen. Les avocats de la Fondation droits de l’homme pour les Erythréens ajoutent enfin que les sous-traitants érythréens sont des sociétés appartenant au parti unique érythréen, le Front populaire pour la démocratie et la justice (FPDJ) ou, tout simplement, au ministère de la Défense.

      Or, les terribles conditions d’emploi des conscrits de l’armée érythréenne ont été abondamment documentées par plusieurs enquêtes, journalistiques, universitaires ou d’institutions comme le Bureau international du travail (BIT). Mais aussi par la Rapporteure spéciale de l’ONU sur les droits de l’homme en Érythrée et, surtout, la Commission d’enquête du Conseil des droits de l’homme de l’ONU en 2015, qui les a inscrit sur une liste de « possibles crimes contre l’humanité ».

      Les appelés sur « service national » érythréens sont en effet soumis à la vie, la discipline et la hiérarchie militaire. Après avoir été enrôlés avant leur dernière année de lycée, ils sont envoyés pendant 18 mois dans l’académie militaire de Sawa, dans le désert près de la frontière soudanaise, où ils sont soumis à des mauvais traitements, surtout les jeunes filles. Les réfractaires sont enrôlés de force au cours de giffas, ces rafles organisées par l’armée dans les campagnes et dans les villes pour capturer les jeunes qui se seraient soustraits à l’appel obligatoire sous les drapeaux ou qui auraient profité d’une permission pour déserter. Officiellement, il n’existe pas de limite à ce service, maintenant tous les Érythréens entre 18 ans et la cinquantaine à la disposition de l’armée, y compris lorsqu’ils sont nommés à des emploi civils.

      Hasard du calendrier : jeudi, le Parlement européen doit également se prononcer sur le sujet. Une résolution est proposée au vote par la députée française Michèle Rivasi (Verts), appelant la Commission européenne à « reporter » tout financement de tels projets, jusqu’à ce qu’une mission d’information du Parlement puisse se rendre en Érythrée. Mission parlementaire dont le principe avait été accepté en novembre, mais qui n’a pas encore eu lieu.

      http://www.rfi.fr/fr/afrique/20200513-erythr%C3%A9e-une-plainte-contre-l-ue-complice-travail-forc%C3%A9
      #justice

    • Eritrean organisation summons the EU for use of forced labour

      A case is being launched today in the court of Amsterdam, the Netherlands, that demands a halt to the European Union (EU) aid worth 80 million EUR being sent to Eritrea. The Foundation Human Rights for Eritreans has observed that the aid project financed by the EU aid relies on forced labour. The EU acknowledges this. This contradicts the most fundamental principles of international law and is unlawful towards the Foundation, which defends the fundamental rights of Eritreans in Eritrea and in the diaspora.

      The Foundation issued a summons to the European Union in April 2019 and asked the EU to end the project, which looks to rehabilitate the roads between Eritrea and Ethiopia. However, the EU refused to stop the project, even as it recognises that forced labour was (and is) used in the context of this project. At the end of 2019, the EU announced that it would provide further funding to the project. The EU funding goes to Eritrean state companies, which use it to procure materials.

      The Eritrean regime makes use of labourers in the Eritrean national service to construct the roads under the project. The circumstances under which the Eritrean population is forced to work in the national service have been described by the United Nations Human Rights Commission in detail: “Thousands of conscripts are subjected to forced labour that effectively abuses, exploits and enslaves them for years.”

      This form of national service has been described as “enslavement” and a “crime against humanity” by the United Nations. The European Parliament has denounced it as “forced labour” and “a form of slavery”. The EU was asked by the European Parliament in January 2020 to “avoid situations where the EU could indirectly finance projects that violate human rights” with specific reference to the Eritrean road building project.

      The EU claims that it has no responsibility for the forced labourers, as it “does not pay for labor under this project”, according to the European Commission. “The project only covers the procurement of material and equipment to support the rehabilitation of roads.”

      The Foundation states that the support to a project which uses forced labour is clearly in contradiction to international law and asks the Amsterdam court that the project is stopped.

      Documents relating to this case

      Press release EN
      https://kvdl.com/uploads/PRESS-RELEASE_KennedyvdLaan_FIN_13May2020.pdf

      Case summary EN
      https://kvdl.com/uploads/Case-Summary_Eritrea-Road-building_FIN_13May2020.pdf

      Writ of summons (‘dagvaarding’) EN
      https://kvdl.com/uploads/Writ-of-Summons-Foundation-HRfE-EU.pdf

      https://kvdl.com/en/articles/eritrean-organisation-summons-the-eu-for-use-of-forced-labour

    • Érythrée | L’Europe accusée de financer le travail forcé

      La Fondation des droits de l’homme pour les Érythréens, basée aux Pays-Bas, a déposé une plainte contre l’Union européenne (UE) en mai 2020, l’incriminant de financer le travail forcé en Érythrée. En cause : les investissements du Fonds fiduciaire d’urgence de l’UE pour l’Afrique dans des chantiers majoritairement menés par des personnes enrôlées de force pour un service militaire indéfini, avec des salaires quasi inexistants. La Suisse est associée à ce fonds d’urgence pour l’Afrique, qui a comme but premier de freiner la migration africaine vers l’Europe. Or, le règlement de l’UE interdit « tout soutien à d’éventuelles violations des droits humains ». La plainte demande aux organes concernés de l’UE de reconnaître ces financements comme illégaux et de les stopper. Les justifications, que les dirigeants européens invoquent en réponse aux critiques déjà émises, semblent jusqu’ici hasardeuses.

      Depuis quelques années l’Érythrée a entamé un mouvement d’ouverture vis-à-vis des soutiens extérieurs au sein de ce pays africain en main du même régime dictatorial depuis son indépendance. Des délégations européennes se sont rendues sur place pour négocier et contempler dans des circuits très contrôlés par les autorités l’état actuel des choses. L’Union européenne soutient financièrement des projets sur place à travers l’utilisation du Fonds fiduciaire d’urgence de l’UE pour l’Afrique, doté de 4,6 milliards. Conçu en 2015 lors d’une augmentation du nombre de demandes d’asile en Europe, ce fonds a comme finalité une réduction des migrations vers l’Europe. Selon Radio France International (RFI), concernant l’Érythrée spécifiquement, les chantiers dévoilés en 2018 sont financés à hauteur de 20 millions de francs en 2019, et 60 millions en 2020.

      Une sommation en 2019, puis une plainte contre l’UE en 2020

      Or pour la Fondation des droits de l’homme pour les Érythréens, cette aide finance des chantiers où travailleraient des conscrits enrôlés de force et mal (ou non) rémunérés. Malgré les changements récents, le régime autoritaire d’Issayas Afewerki ne donne pas de signe de relâchement envers sa population. Le rapport 2019 de Human Rights Watch énumère encore de nombreuses exactions contre les droits humains et dénonce également le financement de ces chantiers par l’UE. En particulier à travers ce système de milice forcé qui enrôle hommes et femmes dès leur majorité, et parfois plus jeunes, pour des travaux nationaux sans véritable compensation financière ni limite de temps formelle. Les figures opposantes au régime sont muselées, emprisonnées ou trouvent comme seule échappatoire la fuite du territoire. Un reportage auprès de l’énorme diaspora érythréenne vivant de l’autre côté de la frontière en Éthiopie, paru dans Mondiaal Niews (01.11.2019) estime que « l’argent européen maintient simplement la dictature en place ». Autrement dit : « l’Europe n’arrête pas la migration d’Érythrée, elle [en] prépare le terrain ».

      Selon la Fondation, ce sont précisément des personnes enrôlées contre leur gré qui travaillent sur des chantiers titanesques, cofinancés par l’Union européenne dans le cadre de ce fonds fiduciaire d’urgence de l’UE pour l’Afrique. Elle s’était déjà adressée aux autorités européennes en avril 2019 pour dénoncer ces faits (RFI). L’UE s’était alors défendue de toute responsabilité. Reconnaissant « que l’Érythrée n’accepte aucune condition sur l’octroi des fonds », elle estimait que les salaires étaient versés, vu que l’argent était touché par des entreprises érythréennes directement. Or, ces arguments ont comme source directe le gouvernement érythréen. Selon les informations invoquées par la Fondation, les sous-traitants érythréens en charge des chantiers sont des sociétés appartenant au parti unique érythréen. Ce qui permet de mettre en doute leur indépendance.
      Restés lettre morte, les arguments de la Fondation ont cette fois été formulés sous forme de plainte déposée le 13 mai 2020 auprès du tribunal de grande instance d’Amsterdam. Un dossier de 30 pages demande à l’UE de reconnaître ce soutien comme illégal et de le stopper.

      La Suisse y est associée

      Un article paru dans Le Temps le 22 janvier 2020 révélait que la Suisse était associée à ce fonds. Si les autorités helvétiques disent avoir émis des critiques sur le programme érythréen, insistant sur la nécessité d’une surveillance étroite, leur contribution participe dans les faits à ces chantiers ayant potentiellement recours au travail forcé. L’article évoque celui nommé « de la route de la paix » permettant d’améliorer l’accès à la mer pour la très enclavée Érythrée. Le responsable de ce fonds pour la Suisse affirmait ne « financer que le matériel ».
      Une assurance peu fiable, si l’on en croit l’UNOPS, un bureau onusien chargé par l’UE de contrôler l’utilisation du fonds, pour qui il n’est pas possible d’effectuer la surveillance de manière indépendante. Selon l’article du Temps, des membres de la Commission européenne avaient finalement rétorqué : « Le gouvernement a indiqué qu’il était prêt à démobiliser les conscrits une fois que les conditions le permettront. Il faut que la création d’emplois soit suffisante. Cela ne peut se produire du jour au lendemain. Se retirer serait contre-productif […] »
      On le voit, les arguments avancés par les représentant-e-s de la Suisse ou de l’Union européenne ne tiennent pas la route. Et leur responsabilité reste entière. Pensaient-ils, pensaient-elles, que la crainte de l’arrivée de nouveaux ressortissant-e-s érythréen-ne-s en quête de protection suffirait à faire tolérer des alliances et financements inavouables ? C’était faire fi d’une diaspora érythréenne intimement soudée et organisée pour faire front face à un régime totalitaire qui rend exsangue tout un peuple encore à sa merci. Cette plainte vient rappeler leur présence essentielle et leur ténacité exemplaire.

      –—

      Documents clés
      • 13.05.2020 Communiqué de presse relatif au dépôt de la plainte par Foundation Human Rights for Erythreans : « Eritrean organisation summons the EU for use of forced labour » (https://asile.ch/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/PRESS-RELEASE_KennedyvdLaan_FIN_13May2020.pdf)
      • 14.01.2020 Rapport publié par Human Rights Watch « Eritrea : Events of 2019 » (https://www.hrw.org/world-report/2020/country-chapters/eritrea)
      • 01.04.2019 Lettre de sommation envoyée à l’Union européenne « Foundation Human Rights for Eritreans / European Union » (https://asile.ch/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Letter-of-Summons-EU-Emergency-Trust-Fund-for-Africa-1.pdf)

      https://asile.ch/2020/08/24/erythree-leurope-accusee-de-financer-le-travail-force

  • I asked young Eritreans why they risk migration. This is what they told me

    Isaias was 16 when he escaped from Sa’wa, the military training camp for final-year high school students in Eritrea. His parents came to know of his whereabouts only a few weeks after. From Sudan he tried to cross the Sinai to reach Israel. But he was kidnapped by bandits. His family paid a high ransom to save him.

    Isaias returned to Addis Ababa, the capital of neighbouring Ethiopia, where I met him when he was 17. His family was supporting him financially and wanted him to remain there. But Isaias had different plans. A few months later he disappeared. As I was later to learn, he had successfully crossed from Libya into Europe.

    This young man is part of a worrying statistic. Since around 2010, the flow of unaccompanied minors from Eritrea has significantly increased and has become the subject of international concern. In 2015, over 5000 unaccompanied minors from Eritrea sought asylum in Europe according to the Mixed Migration Centre. In 2018, the number was 3500.

    Minors are only part of a wider exodus that involves mostly Eritreans in their twenties and thirties. The UN refugee agency calculates that at the end of 2018 there were over 500 000 Eritrean refugees worldwide – a high number for a country of around 5 million people.

    Initially driven by a simmering border conflict with Ethiopia, this mass migration continues to be fuelled by a lack of political, religious and social freedom. In addition, there are little economic prospects in the country.

    And generations of young people have been trapped in a indefinite mandatory national service. They serve in the army or in schools, hospitals and public offices, irrespective of their aspirations, with little remuneration. Even though Ethiopia and Eritrea have struck a deal to end their border conflict, there is no debate over the indefinite nature of the national service.

    Brought up in a context where migration represents the main route out of generational and socio-economic immobility, most young Eritreans I met decided to leave. While unaccompanied minors are usually depicted as passively accepting their families’ decisions, my research illustrates their active role in choosing whether and when to migrate.

    I explored the negotiations that take place between young migrants and their families as they consider departing and undertaking arduous journeys. But the crucial role of agency shouldn’t be equated to a lack of vulnerability. Vulnerability, in fact, defines their condition as young people in Eritrea and is likely to grow due to the hardships of the journey.
    Context of protracted crisis

    Young Eritreans often migrate without their family’s approval.

    Families are aware that the country can’t offer their children a future. Nevertheless, parents are reticent about encouraging their children to take a risky path, a decision that can lead to death at sea or at the hand of bandits.

    Young Eritreans keep their plans secret due to respect, or emotional care, towards their families. One 23-year-old woman who had crossed to Ethiopia a year before told me:

    It is better not to make them worry for nothing: if you make it, then they can be happy for you; if you don’t make it, they will have time to be sad afterwards.

    Adonay, another 26-year-old man, said:

    If you tell them they might tell you not to do it, and then it would be harder to disobey. If they endorse your decision then they might feel responsible if something bad happens to you. It should be only your choice.

    But that is not all. As a young woman told me,

    The less they know the better it is in case the police come to the house asking questions about the flight.

    Migration from Eritrea is mostly illegal and tightly controlled by the government, any connivance could be punished with fees or incarceration.
    The journey

    Eritrean border crossings are based on complicated power dynamics involving smugglers, smuggled refugees and their paying relatives, generally residing in Europe, US or the Middle East.

    In this mix, smuggled refugees are far from being choice-less or the weak party.

    Relatives are often scared of the dangers of border crossing through Libya to Europe. Moreover, some may not be able to mobilise the necessary funds. But young refugees have their ways to persuade them.

    As payment to smugglers is typically made at the end in Libya and then after migrants have reached Italy, refugees embark on these journeys without telling their potential financial supporters in the diaspora. Once in Libya, they provide the smugglers with the telephone number of those who are expected to pay. This is an extremely risky gamble as migrants are betting on their relatives’ resources and willingness to help them.

    Those who do not have close enough relatives abroad cannot gamble at all. Sometimes relatives struggle to raise the necessary amount and have to collect money from friends and larger community networks. Migrants then have to spend more time – and at times experience more violence and deprivation – in the warehouses where smugglers keep them in Libya. Migrants are held to hide them from authorities and ensure their fees are paid.

    Even in these conditions, migrants don’t necessarily give up their agency. It has been argued that they,

    temporarily surrender control at points during the journey, accepting momentary disempowerment to achieve larger strategic goals.

    Moving beyond the common framing

    Analysing the interactions between Eritrean families and their migrant children at different stages of their journeys can contribute to moving beyond the common framing of the “unaccompanied minor” characterised by an ambivalent depiction as either the victim or the bogus migrant.

    These opposing and binary views of unaccompanied minors implicitly link deserving protection with ultimate victimhood devoid of choice. Instead, the stories of Eritreans show that vulnerability, at the outset and during the journey, does not exclude agency.

    https://theconversation.com/i-asked-young-eritreans-why-they-risk-migration-this-is-what-they-t
    #réfugiés_érythréens #migrations #asile #réfugiés #Erythrée #raisons #facteurs_push #push-factors #liberté #motivations #service_national #armée #service_militaire #MNA #mineurs_non_accompagnés #jeunesse #jeunes

  • Why I Leave Home
    By Yohana Tekeste

    I was born in a desert

    In which I grew up with false hope

    Eyes red, heart always aching

    Free classes opportunities zero

    I tried to look to those who were before

    No change I could see

    Mind so big, thinking so small

    Too much air, couldn’t breathe any more

    Tired of missions without aim

    The struggle took my father’s leg and my future, too

    My illness can kill if I don’t leave!

    Can this be crime to save my prime?

    Seeking for a place which I cannot even name

    Asking for asylum, it was not for food

    More a hunger for freedom leading to peace

    Was it my fault for leaving home?

    –----

    ቤተይ ገዲፈ

    ብ ዮሃና ተከስተ

    ተወሊደ ኣብ ምድረ በዳ

    ዓብየ ብናይ ሓሶት ተስፋ

    ወግሐ ጸብሐ ዓይነይ እናቀይሐ

    ብዘይእብረ ልበይ እናተሰብረ

    ሕልምታተይ ደረት ኣልቦ

    ዕድላተይ እናተራብሐ ብባዶ

    እንተራእኽዎም ቅድመይ ዝነበሩ

    ራኢኦም ጸልሚቱ መለሳ ዘይብሉ

    ኣእምርኦም ሰፊሕ ቅንጥብጣብ ዝሓስቡ

    ኣየር ብብዝሑ ትንፋሶም ተዓፊኑ

    ምንባር ሓርቢትዎም ተስፋ ዝሰኣኑ

    ተልእኾ ኣድኪሙኒ ዕላማ ዘይብሉ

    ቃልሲ ደኣ ናይ ኣቦይ እንድኣሉ

    እግሩ ዝወሰደ መጻእየይ መንጢሉ

    ጓሂ’ዶ ደኣ ክቀትለኒ እንታይ ኣለኒ ዕዳ

    ንሕልመይ ምብካየይ ገበን ኮይኑ ግዳ

    ስሙ’ኳ ዘይፈለጦ እንትርፎ ክርእዮ

    ስደት ዓዲ ጓና መኣስ ተመንየዮ

    ዝብላዕ ስኢነ’ዶ ዑቅባ ሓቲተዮም

    ሕልናይ’ዩ ጠምዩ ናጽነት ምስ ሰላም

    ዓደይ ብምግዳፈይ ኮይነ ድየ ጠላም፧

    https://www.oxforcedmigration.com/current-issue/why-i-leave-home

    #poésie #poème #exil #migrations #réfugiés #paix #liberté #Erythrée #réfugiés_érythréens

  • Projet Erythréen

    Nous avons lancé un projet de lutte contre la discrimination à l’encontre des requérant-e-s d’asile érythréen-ne-s en Suisse. Nous avons besoin de votre soutien pour veiller à ce que leurs droits fondamentaux soient respectés.

    Discrimination contre les Érythréen-ne-s en Suisse

    La situation épouvantable des droits de l’homme en Érythrée a poussé des dizaines de milliers de personnes à fuir les persécutions. Pendant de nombreuses années, la Suisse a offert un refuge sûr aux ressortissant-e-s érythréen-ne-s, reconnaissant leur besoin de protection internationale. Ils constituent le plus grand groupe de réfugiés en Suisse.

    Cependant, à la mi-2016, le Secrétariat d’Etat aux migrations (SEM) a entrepris un durcissement significatif de la politique d’asile – confirmé en 2017 par le Tribunal administratif fédéral (TAF) – refusant la protection à des milliers de personnes malgré le fait que la situation des droits humains en Erythrée ne s’est pas améliorée.

    Une déclaration de Human Rights Watch (HRW) lors de la session du Conseil des droits de l’homme de l’ONU en juillet 2019, a relevé que :

    “Eritreans continue to face arbitrary detention, enforced disappearance, and violations of freedom of expression, assembly and religion. Individuals continue to be held incommunicado and detained indefinitely, denied basic due process rights, without access to legal counsel, judicial review, or family visits, some for decades.”

    En dépit de preuves accablantes du risque de torture, la Suisse est le seul pays européen à considérer l’Érythrée comme un pays sûr pour les personnes en âge de servir et qui ont quitté le pays illégalement (voir : notre présentation au Rapporteur spécial des Nations Unies sur la situation des droits de l’homme en Érythrée).

    "At the international level, Switzerland stands out by issuing removal decisions : no European State carries out expulsions to Eritrea." (ODAE romand)

    Les conséquences

    Les Érythréen-ne-s se voient refuser l’asile et reçoivent l’ordre de quitter le pays. Étant donné que la Suisse n’a pas d’accord de réadmission avec l’Érythrée, les retours forcés ne sont pas possibles. La conséquence en est que les ressortissant-e-s érythréen-ne-s expulsé-e-s sont condamné-e-s à une vie sans statut légal en Suisse. Ce groupe croissant d’Érythréen-ne-s sans statut survit grâce à l’aide d’urgence pendant une période indéfinie, sans possibilité de travailler ou de poursuivre leurs études. En vertu de la loi sur les étrangers, ils risquent également l’arrestation et la détention pour non-respect de la décision de renvoi. Cette situation est profondément indigne pour les personnes concernées qui sont essentiellement condamnées à vivre dans un “vide juridique”.

    La politique des autorités suisses n’affecte pas seulement les nouveaux arrivants, mais aussi les Erythréen-ne-s qui ont déjà été admis-es en Suisse (depuis plusieurs mois, voire années) avant le changement de pratique, et dont les permis sont arbitrairement révoqués par les autorités suisses (voir communiqué de presse SEM : https://www.sem.admin.ch/sem/fr/home/aktuell/news/2018/2018-09-03.html).

    Notre Objectif

    Le CSDM considère que la pratique consistant à refuser une protection internationale aux requérant-e-s d’asile érythréen-ne-s en Suisse est contraire au droit international et discriminatoire car elle vise spécifiquement un groupe national déterminé.

    Il est clairement établi que les personnes risquent d’être soumises à la torture, à des mauvais traitements, à la détention arbitraire et au travail forcé lors de leur retour en Érythrée, répondant de facto à la définition de réfugié au sens de la Convention de 1951 relative au statut des réfugiés. Ceci est confirmé par le dernier rapport du European Asylum Support Office (EASO).

    Notre objectif est de contester la position des autorités suisses en faisant du lobbying et en engageant des procédures devant les organes de Traité des Nations Unies et la Cour européenne des droits de l’homme.

    Le CSDM considère que la pratique consistant à refuser d’accorder une protection aux demandeurs d’asile érythréen-ne-s en Suisse est discriminatoire et en violation du droit international.

    Notre plan d’action

    Afin d’atteindre cet objectif, nous prévoyons de mener les actions suivantes :

    LOBBYING

    Soumettre un rapport alternatif au Comité des Nations Unies pour l’élimination de la discrimination raciale (CERD) dans le cadre de son examen du rapport de la Suisse (101ème session, du 20 avril au 8 mai 2020).
    S’assurer du suivi de notre lettre d’allégations (https://centre-csdm.org/wp-content/uploads/2019/05/Appel-Urgent-Erythr%C3%A9e-CSDM-14.05.2019.pdf) adressée au Rapporteur spécial sur la situation des droits de l’homme en Érythrée.

    DÉPÔT de plaintes internationales

    Préparation, soumission et suivi de nouvelles plaintes individuelles au CERD.
    Suivi de nos dossiers pendantes (N.A. v. Switzerland, Applic. no. 52306/18 ; B.G. v. Switzerland, Applic. no. 48334/19 ; D.S. v. Switzerland, CAT Comm. no. 953/2019).

    VISIBILITÉ

    Maintenir la visibilité sur la question de la discrimination à l’encontre des requérant-e-s d’asile érythréen-ne-s en :

    Diffusant des informations sur cette question, y compris du contenu Web et publier notre rapport alternatif.
    Sensibilisant régulièrement les parties concernées pour assurer la durabilité du projet.

    https://centre-csdm.org/projet-erythreen
    #discriminations #résistance #asile #migrations #réfugiés #réfugiés_érythréens #Suisse #Erythrée #CSDM #droit_d'asile

  • Robel, migrant bien inséré, mais qui doit être renvoyé

    Robel est un jeune Erythréen de 21 ans. Depuis 2017, il est au bénéfice d’un permis F. Il trouve un travail, apprend le français et se construit un réseau social dans la région. Mais en juin dernier, il reçoit une lettre qui lui annonce que son permis lui est retiré. Il doit quitter le pays. La Suisse n’ayant pas d’accord de réadmission avec l’Erythrée, les renvois sont impossibles. L’association AJIR lance alors une pétition pour sensibiliser les autorités. En deux semaines, plus de 4000 signatures sont recueillies. Le sujet a même été abordé lors du dernier Parlement jurassien.

    http://www.canalalpha.ch/actu/robel-migrant-bien-insere-mais-qui-doit-etre-renvoye
    #permis_F #asile #migrations #réfugiés #réfugiés_érythréens #Suisse #Erythrée #renvoi #accueil_privé #travail #Jura #retrait_du_permis #aide_d'urgence #intégration_professionnelle #retrait_du_permis #régularisation #admission_provisoire

    Robel serait un de ces réfugiés érythréens à qui l’admission provisoire a été retirée après le #réexamen :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/688616

    v. aussi
    ODAE | Durcissement à l’encontre des Érythréen·ne·s : une communauté sous pression
    https://odae-romand.ch/wp/wp-content/uploads/2018/11/RT_erythree_web.pdf
    https://seenthis.net/messages/739961

  • ‘I am like a prisoner again’ – Glasgow’s destitute Eritreans

    Some nights Ariam gets lucky. A friend lets him sleep on a couch or curled up in the corner of a bedroom floor.

    But most evenings he just walks. With a bag slung over his slight, mid-30s frame, the Eritrean traverses Glasgow’s crepuscular streets, shoulders pulled tight against the elements.

    Ariam, not his real name, walks because he has no place to go.

    “I do not sleep on the street. It is too cold. I just walk around all night,” he says when we meet in a Glasgow cafe. It is around midday and Ariam looks tired. Stubble cloaks his thin face. He speaks clear English in a low monotone, as if his batteries are drained.

    “I’ve stayed in every part of Glasgow. Here, there, everywhere. That’s the way I live,” he tells me.

    The Ferret met the Eritrean refugees in this report in Glasgow in 2016. Two years on, most are still living the same precarious existence today, outside the immigration system with no access to work or housing, and with no prospect of returning to a homeland where they would face prison – or worse – for desertion.

    Ariam did not always live like this. Like so many Eritreans he spent years in compulsory military service with no prospect of an end. Eritrean president Isaias Afwerki’s one-party state is one of the world’s most oppressive regimes, according to Human Rights Watch.

    I’ve stayed in every part of Glasgow. Here, there, everywhere. That’s the way I live.
    Ariam

    One day, while guarding Eritrea’s western border, Ariam managed to escape into Sudan. From there, often on foot, he reached Libya. A precarious £1,000 ride on an inflatable dingy with 27 others took him across the Mediterranean Sea to Italy.

    Eventually he arrived in Dover. That was 2006.

    Once in the UK, Ariam was granted discretionary leave to remain, on humanitarian grounds. He moved to Glasgow shortly afterwards, and got a job at a warehouse and a flat in the East End.

    Life thousands of miles away from home was not easy but it was better than living in constant fear in Eritrea.

    In October 2015, Ariam reapplied to the Home Office for leave to remain. He had no reason to be worried. The system was cumbersome but he had been through it numerous times. However, this time his application was turned down. He was not entitled to work – or to draw any benefits.

    “I paid my taxes. Now they were telling me I couldn’t work, and they wouldn’t support me,” he says. “I risked my life to come to this country and now they abandoned me.”

    As he talks he takes a clear plastic envelope from his jacket pocket. Methodically he thumbs through the sheaf of documents inside; there are neatly ordered tax returns, Barclays bank statements, pages headed with the Home Office’s fussy shield of the Royal Arms crest. Among the paraphernalia of governance is a photocopied pamphlet: ‘Food Clothing Shelter Information Advice for Destitute Asylum Seekers’.

    After we have finished our coffees, Ariam and another Eritrean, Mike, take me to the East End, where they often sleep on the floor of an apartment complex that they lived in before their access to benefits was cut. The Barras slips past our taxi window. Then Celtic Park. “Paradise” declares a huge banner wrapped around the stadium. We keep driving. Five minutes later we arrive at a utilitarian block of flats clad in pebbledash. The building is perhaps only fifteen years old but already showing signs of age.

    “Here we are,” Ariam smiles. We are standing outside a janitor’s cupboard on the ground floor of the flats. Mike unfurls a mattress clandestinely stored inside. When the superintendent is away they sometimes sleep on the stairwell floor, in front of a plate glass window looking out onto a biscuit factory.

    Eritreans were the leading recipients of destitution grants from Scottish charity Refugee Survival Trust in 2015 and 2016. Destitute Eritreans in Scotland have received almost 300 survival grants over since 2014. Many of these were in and around Glasgow.

    Those The Ferret spoke to told a similar story. Having survived one of the most brutal regimes on the planet, many are barred from employment or benefits and forced to sleep in night shelters, on floors, or even in parks.

    “We are trapped here,” Ariam says as we walk back towards the city. “It is like we are prisoners of war here.”
    https://z4a4p3v5.stackpathcdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/01/1S2C5880.jpg

    People have been fleeing Eritrea for Britain since the 1980s. For decades, the vast majority were granted asylum. But that changed in 2015 when the Home Office – then headed by Theresa May, who had pledged to radically reduce immigration – decided that Eritrea was no longer unsafe for refugees to return to.

    That year, Eritreans accounted for the largest group applying for asylum in the UK, with more than 3,700 applicants. But almost overnight the number of successful applications plummeted.

    In the first quarter of 2015 just under three-quarters of Eritrean applicants were approved. That figure fell to 34 per cent in the following three months.

    The Home Office was eventually forced to change its policy, and in 2016 – the last full year on record – the number of successful Eritrean asylum claims rose significantly.

    But there are still Eritreans in the UK who have found themselves living outside the system, with no formal status or right to accommodation or employment, trapped in what the British Government has called “a hostile environment” for immigrants.

    There is no evidence that Eritreans avoiding military service in Eritrea are thinking ‘I won’t go to the UK to avoid sleeping rough on the streets of Glasgow’.
    Simon Cox, immigration lawyer

    “The logic of the hostile environment policy is we hold these people hostage to deter others from coming. There is no evidence that this works,” says Simon Cox, a migration lawyer for the Open Society Justice Initiative.

    “There is no evidence that Eritreans avoiding military service in Eritrea are thinking ‘I won’t go to the UK to avoid sleeping rough on the streets of Glasgow’.”

    SNP MP Stuart McDonald says the Home Office has used a policy of “enforced destitution in order to try and make someone leave the UK” that is “barbaric and utterly inappropriate”.

    “It is a scandal these people are being forced to sleep in parks and bus shelters,” McDonald told the Ferret.

    The Home Office does not deport people back to Eritrea, such is the brutality of Isaias Afwerki’s one-party state.

    Afwerki led the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front in a 30-year-long secessionist war with Ethiopia that culminated in independence, in 1993. Since then the president has overseen an increasingly brutal surveillance state.

    Eritreans as young as 13 or 14 are forced into sawa – indefinite national service – from which many never leave.

    Extrajudicial killings, torture, rape, and forced labour take place “on a scope and scale seldom witnessed elsewhere”, according to a damning 2015 United Nations report. Afwerki oversees “ruthless repression” and “pervasive state control”.

    No one knows for sure how many people live in Eritrea. Some put the population at three million. Others six. This disparity attests to the scale of migration in recent decades.

    A 2015 UN report found that Eritreans who fled the country illegally are regarded as “traitors” and frequently imprisoned if they return. “[They] are systematically ill-treated to the point of torture,” the UN said.

    The Home Office used to recognise the barbarity of the Eritrean regime. In 2008, six Eritreans athletes at the World Cross Country Championship in Edinburgh lodged claims for political asylum. All were granted. One of the runners, Tsegai Tewelde, went on to compete for Britain in the 2016 Olympics.

    But the British Government’s position on Eritrea abruptly changed not long after a high level diplomatic meeting in the Eritrean capital, Asmara. In December 2014, senior Eritrean government officials received a UK delegation led by James Sharp, the Foreign Office’s director of migration, and Rob Jones, the Home Office’s head of asylum and family policy.

    Soon afterwards, Theresa May’s Home Office radically changed its guidance on Eritrea. The scale of human rights abuse in Eritrea was less severe than previously thought, Home Office officials said. Forced military service was no longer indefinite; those who left the country illegally faced no consequences as long as they signed a ‘letter of apology’ and paid a ‘diaspora tax’ on money earned abroad. This controversial new assessment was based on a ‘flawed’ Danish report.

    Britain’s official guidance on Eritean was only junked when judges ruled that returning Eritreans faced serious harm. Subsequent internal documents revealed that the UK government downplayed the risk of human rights abuses in Eritrea to reduce asylum seeker numbers – despite doubts from its own experts.

    McDonald said that the Home Office’s “treatment of Eritrean asylum seekers has been disgraceful – clinging on to clearly unreliable country evidence that returns to Eritrea could be made safely, even when the international consensus and overwhelming evidence was to the opposite effect.

    “There can be little doubt that a good number among the 300 Eritreans forced to rely on survival grants were refused while the old guidance was in place and the Home Office should be looking again at their cases.”

    Even though the Home Office’s country guidance has been amended , the bureaucratic hurdles can prove insurmountable for Eritreans on the streets. There are so many meetings to attend, forms to fill in correctly, documents to present.

    “Once you become homeless it becomes almost impossible. You can’t keep your paper. The idea of keeping an appointment goes out the window,” says Simon Cox.

    This labyrinthine process has been cited as one reason for the unprecedented increase in homeless refugees in Scotland in recent years. In 2014-15, the Refugee Survival Trust gave out 336 grants. Last year it was more than 1,000 for the first time.

    “The amount that we spend on grants has increased by 586 per cent in just three years and we are concerned about how long we will be able to meet this soaring demand to meet the most basic needs of the most vulnerable people in our society,” says Zoë Holliday, a co-ordinator with the Refugee Survival Trust.

    More than half of those receiving grants were either submitting a fresh asylum claim or further submissions to support an existing claim. At this stage of the asylum process most refugees have no access to government support.

    “There is a huge need for reform of the asylum system so that fewer individuals and families fall through the many gaps in the system and find themselves destitute. There is also a need for more support to be available for those who do find themselves in this situation, because it is simply unacceptable that so many people find themselves reliant on small emergency grants from a small charity like ours, which is in turn reliant on small donations from individuals and foundations,” says Holliday.

    Owen Fenn, manager of Govan Community Project, a community-based organisation that works with migrants in Glasgow, says the Home Office’s “agenda continues to punish the most vulnerable in our society”.

    “People then either have to sign up to return to a country where they will probably be killed, sleep on the streets and survive on foodbanks, or start working in a black economy where they are at risk of abuse and, if caught, criminalisation,” Fenn added.

    A Home Office spokesperson said: “Failed asylum seekers or those who have departed from the asylum process who can return to their country of origin should do so.

    “The Home Office has no obligation and does not provide support for failed asylum seekers, unless there is a genuine obstacle to their departure.”

    David has never seen his only son, Esrom. The child, who will be twelve at his next birthday, lives with David’s wife in the Eritrean capital Asmara. It is a city David, not his real name fears he will never see again.

    When Esrom was born, David was living in a refugee camp in Ethiopia. He had deserted his post as an Eritrean border guard. “I left with two friends,” David recalls. “We knew the place, where the minefields were.” The three men snuck away quietly, avoiding the snipers that guard the border, before crossing at a river.

    On the other side of the border the men were picked by a rebel group fighting the Ethiopian government. One of his companions was the son of a former government minister who was arrested in a vicious 2001 crackdown and never seen again.

    After four days, the deserters were handed over to Ethiopian authorities who placed them in a refugee camp. From there David joined the familiar route for Eritrean exiles; through Sudan, on to Libya and then across the Mediterranean.

    “I was not mentally fit to join the army,” David says. It’s a surprising thing to hear; he is tall, and well-built and speaks with a quiet confidence. But after 15 years in National Service, earning as little as £2 a month, he had to escape.

    Most of those who escape Eritrea are deserters. Many are not as lucky as David.

    Then they were caught and brought back. The whole night they were beaten. All you could hear was their screams.
    David

    In 2016, a convoy of military trucks travelled through the capital, Asmara. A busload of National Service conscripts made a run for it. They were shot down in cold blood. Twenty-nine were killed or injured.

    David knows first hand the brutality of life in Eritrea. Scars line his face. “They beat me with sticks,” he tells me.

    Torture was frequent in the jail he was held in after an earlier, unsuccessful, escape attempt. “One night four people managed to run from the prison. They escaped for two weeks. Then they were caught and brought back. The whole night they were beaten. All you could hear was their screams.”

    Now in his 40s, David has lived in Glasgow for almost a decade. We meet across the street from the African Caribbean Centre on Osborne Street. The community venue closed in 2016 with unpaid debts totalling over £60,000.

    David and his Eritrean friends look wistfully across at the padlocked doors, chewing tobacco and sharing cigarettes. “We went there every day. Now we have nowhere to go,” he says.

    The rest of the group nod. “We used to spend all day there,” says another. Often they would meet other Africans in the centre who would give them a roof for the night. Now many spend their days in public libraries, seeking solace from the cold before the long night arrives and the night shelters open.

    David sleeps on a friend’s floor some nights; others he spends in a homeless shelter in Glasgow that he has to leave by 8am. His clothes are washed by an Eritrean friend whose asylum application is being processed.

    “We get nothing from the government. We live on the charity organisations for our daily meal,” he says.

    “You don’t say “next week I will do this”, you just live day-to-day. You are always depending on someone else.”

    David came to the UK because he had family here. “I thought it would be better.” Has it been, I ask? He shakes his head. “No.”

    The Eritrean diaspora is now spread right across the world. Glasgow has one of the largest communities in the UK, with an estimated 500 Eritreans dispersed across the city.

    “Eritreans keep a low profile in case the Eritrean government comes after them,” says Teklom Gebreindrias, a graduate of Glasgow Caledonian University who was granted asylum in the UK after escaping Eritrea in 2007.

    The Home Office has said that many Eritrean asylum applicants are bogus, made by other African nationals posing as Eritrean. But in a response to a Freedom of Information submitted by The Ferret, the Home Office said that data on so-called ‘nationality disputes’ is not collated and cannot be accessed without a manual investigation of all asylum cases.

    Another Eritrean, who we will call Moses, has given up appealing. He shows me an ID card. It looks very official, with the Westminster portcullis embossed beside his grainy photograph. Typed on the back in bold font is “FORBIDDEN FROM TAKING EMPLOYMENT”.

    Moses is thirty, tall and thin with piercing eyes. He absconded from the Eritrean army and arrived in the UK almost a decade ago. “I came here as a young man, now look at me.” His foot taps an impatient beat on the floor. He juggles a baseball cap between his broad hands. He grew up dreaming of becoming a mechanic. Now he spends his days killing time.

    “We are in a productive age but because we cannot work we are idle in this country. It affects your mental wellbeing.” His voice is rasping, and angry. “I used to be a normal person, but now I have depression. It is not easy to live for ten years without any support.”

    Moses has slept rough in Queen’s Park on Glasgow’s Southside. “People just stare at you but they do nothing.”

    For Moses the dream of a new life in the UK – a dream he risked sniper fire for, almost drowned in the Mediterranean Sea for, spent countless nights locked up in Home Office detention centres for – is dead.

    “I don’t want to stay in this country. It has ruined my life. There is nothing worse. We were living a miserable life in Eritrea. Now we are living a miserable life here.”

    https://theferret.scot/glasgows-destitute-eritreans

    #réfugiés #réfugiés_érythréens #Erythrée #Ecosse #UK #asile #migrations #déboutés

  • The Eritrean National Service. Servitude for “the common good” and the Youth Exodus

    Gives voice to the conscripts who are forced to serve indefinitely without remuneration under the ENS in a powerful critical survey of its effect from the #Liberation_Struggle to today.

    The #Eritrean_National_Service (ENS) lies at the core of the post-independence state, not only supplying its military, but affecting every aspect of the country’s economy, its social services, its public sector and its politics. Over half the workforce are forcibly enrolled into it by the government, driving the country’s youth to escape national service by seeking employment and asylum elsewhere. Yet how did the ENS, which began during the 1961-91 liberation struggle as part of the idea of the “common good” - in which individual interests were sacrificed in pursuit of the grand scheme of independence and the country’s development - degenerate into forced labour and a modern form of slavery? And why, when Eritrea no longer faces existential threat, does the government continue to demand such service from its citizens?
    This book provides for the first time an in-depth and critical scrutiny of the ENS’s achievements and failures and its overarching impact on the social fabric of Eritrea. The author discusses the historical backdrop to the ENS and the rationales underlying it; its goals and objectives; its transformative effects, as well as its impact on the country’s defence capability, national unity, national identity construction and nation-building. He also analyses the extent to which the national service functions as an effective mechanism of transmitting the core values of the liberation struggle to the conscripts and through them to the rest of country’s population. Finally, the book assesses whether the core aims and objectives of the ENS proclaimed by various governments have been or are in the process of being accomplished and, drawing on the testimony of the hitherto voiceless conscripts themselves, its impact on their lives and livelihoods.


    https://boydellandbrewer.com/the-eritrean-national-service-hb.html
    #livre #service_national #émigration #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Erythrée #Gaim_Kibreab

    • Le même auteur a écrit aussi cet article :
      Sexual Violence in the Eritrean National Service

      Claims of sexual violence against female conscripts by military commanders abound in the Eritrean national service (ENS). Hitherto there has been no attempt to subject these claims to rigorous empirical scrutiny. This article is a partial attempt to fill the gap. Using data collected through snowball sampling from 190 deserters (51 females and 139 males) in the United Kingdom, Switzerland, Norway, South Africa, Kenya and Sweden, supplemented by data from systematically selected key informants, it examines the extent to which female conscripts serving in the ENS are subjected to sexual violence and harassment by their commanders. The extensive data based on the perceptions and experiences of respondents who served on average about six years before deserting; imply that sexual abuse is rampant in the ENS

      https://openresearch.lsbu.ac.uk/item/8701z
      #viol #culture_du_viol #violences_sexuelles

  • Continuous Influx of Eritrean Refugees Challenges Ethiopia

    Refugee and host communities in Ethiopia came together on June 20 to commemorate World Refugee Day through various cultural activities, organized within refugee camps as well as urban settings. But the reality behind the festivities is that hundreds of Eritrean refugees continue to cross the border between Eritrea and Ethiopia every day.

    Despite the peace deal between Ethiopia and Eritrea, signed in July 2018, the internal situation and oppression of Eritrean people, mainly through the indefinite military service, remains intact. The continued inflow of young Eritreans fleeing oppression is putting strain on Ethiopia’s refugee camps.

    A senior official from the Ethiopian refugee agency has reported that Eritrean refugees continue to arrive in Ethiopia in large numbers, 250 to 300 persons a day. The increasing number of people residing in refugee camps is posing an enormous challenge for the Ethiopian Agency for Refugees and Returnees Affair (ARRA) as well as development and relief organizations working with refugees. “We have challenges of shelter, Core Relief Items (CRI), water and energy alternatives,” states the senior official. Earlier reports indicate that many young Eritreans currently flee due to the increase of raids, Giffas, to force them into the indefinite national service.

    It is not just Eritreans who are fleeing the country. According to the informed sources, around 5000 Somali refugees living in Eritrea are trying to reach Ethiopia in search of safety. Out of this group, more than 400 individuals have already arrived at Zalambessa, a border town between Ethiopia and Eritrea, where they are supported by Gulomokeda Wereda, a local administrative district of Tigray region.

    Ethiopia has introduced an open door approach and is currently hosting more than 915,000 refugees inside the country. Even though the Federal Government of Ethiopia has shifted its national legislation to give broader rights to refugees, including work permits, the strain on Ethiopian reception facilities is growing.

    Meanwhile, the European Union (EU) has hosted a summit in Brussels in which migration and its management was high on the agenda. The external migration policies of the EU have been challenged this week by a group of organizations through a joint initiative.

    In the letter, addressed to the president of the European Council, organizations denounced migration policies and platforms such as the Khartoum Process through which the EU and several member states cooperate with regimes accused of systematic and severe human rights violations.

    Civil society actors have been mobilizing in the form of legal action, campaigns and protests in order to challenge the adverse effect on human rights, democracy and rule of law that the EU’s external policies are creating. The Foundation Human Rights for Eritreans has initiated a court case against the EU’s €20 million project supporting the Eritrean regime to build roads through a forced labour. Amnesty International and seven other NGOs have taken legal steps against France over the allegedly unlawful donation of boats to the Libyan coast guard. Also, a young Ethiopian asylum seeker has sued the UK’s Department for International Development for funding detention centres in Libya where refugees are exposed to human rights violations, torture and abuse.

    Furthermore, NGOs have legally challenged the blocking of rescue operations on the Mediterranean Sea; meanwhile, a German rescue boat captain Pia Klemp faces prosecution in Italy for her rescue work. A group of lawyers has submitted a document to the International Criminal Court, which calls for EU prosecution over migrant and refugee deaths as a result of EU policy.

    Meanwhile in the Greater Horn of Africa, citizens are raising their voice. Sudanese citizens have been demonstrating, first against the oppressive regime and now against the Transitional Military Council, and are calling for a democratic civilian government. A group of prominent African activists has written an open letter urging Eritrea’s president, Isaias Afwerki, to launch political reforms and to protect human rights of Eritrean people.

    This initiative was predictably dismissed by the regime. Nevertheless, diaspora and even activists within Eritrea are pushing for change through the #Enough and #Yiakil campaign demanding end of indefinite national service, slavery and human rights violations.

    If change is to happen, oppressive leaders and militia should be held accountable for their actions through empowerment of the people. As the letter to the president of the European Council highlights, the EU should support the people, rather than unaccountable external actors, by directing its policies and instruments towards this objective. [IDN-InDepthNews – 22 June 2019]

    https://www.indepthnews.net/index.php/the-world/africa/2770-continuous-influx-of-eritrean-refugees-challenges-ethiopia

    #frontières #asile #migrations #réfugiés #Ethiopie #Erythrée #réfugiés_érythréens #passages #traversées

    Une news qui date de juin 2019, mais que je mets ici pour archivage, et notamment pour ces #statistiques #chiffres :

    A senior official from the Ethiopian refugee agency has reported that Eritrean refugees continue to arrive in Ethiopia in large numbers, 250 to 300 persons a day.

    J’ai trouvé ce chiffre aussi ici :
    https://seenthis.net/messages/808866

  • Eritrean refugees defy border closures only to find hardship in Ethiopia

    The long-dormant border crossings re-opened with such fanfare between Eritrea and Ethiopia last year as a symbol of warming relations are all now closed – but that isn’t stopping a steady flow of Eritrean refugees from fleeing across the heavily militarised frontier.

    According to the UN’s refugee agency, UNHCR, around 300 people continue to cross each day, using remote paths to avoid arrest by Eritrean border guards. They are prima facie refugees, typically escaping compulsory national service, repression, and joblessness, or looking to reunite with family members who have already made the journey.

    New arrivals join roughly 170,000 Eritrean refugees already in Ethiopia, staying in overcrowded camps, or living in nearby host communities. Younger, more mobile men and women typically head to the capital, Addis Ababa, to look for work, taking advantage of Ethiopia’s liberal employment policies for refugees.

    Finding it increasingly difficult to make ends meet in Ethiopia, many Eritrean refugees are choosing to move on, seeking better opportunities in Europe – or even further afield in the Americas – to support their families.

    Eritrea gained independence from Ethiopia in 1993, but relations between the two governments soured, leading to a war from 1998 to 2000 in which 100,000 people died. Eritrea’s closed economy and the harshness of a regime that has remained on a war footing created a generation of exiles – some 460,000 people had fled the country by the end of 2016 out of a population of 5.3 million.

    The peace agreement signed in July 2018 between Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki ended almost two decades of frozen conflict – and won Abiy a Nobel Peace Prize earlier this month. The accord was meant to usher in trade and development, and revive the historical ties between the two nations. But, as progress towards normalising relations has stalled, the four frontier posts thrown open under the agreement have shut, with the last one, Assab-Bure, closing in May.

    “No proper explanation was given, but most probably the [Eritrean] regime fears the risk of losing control over the command economy and further acceleration of the mass exodus,’’ said Nicole Hirt, a researcher on Eritrea with the German Institute of Global and Area Studies.
    Safety, but little work

    The Ethiopian government’s “open-camp” policy means refugees don’t have to stay in camps and can work or continue with their education.

    But most Eritreans here have no proof of their academic qualifications. The Eritrean government doesn’t issue them to those who haven’t completed national service or can’t show evidence of an exemption.

    That complicates the search for work, as Eritrean refugees have to compete in an economy that is struggling to deliver jobs to an already large pool of unemployed youth.

    In the densely-populated Mebrat Hail suburb of Addis Ababa, many apartment buildings are home to Eritreans who arrived after the peace agreement was signed.

    The influx of people looking for work and accommodation led to a jacking up of rents – adding to the struggle of new refugees trying to make a fresh start in Ethiopia.

    “Rent is becoming very expensive in Addis Ababa and, even when you can find a job, you can barely pay the bills,’’ said Abinet, a young Eritrean working as a taxi driver.

    Rent on a one-bedroom flat is between $150 and $200 – a large amount of money to find each month.

    Faven, who was a laboratory technician in the Eritrean capital, Asmara, came to Addis Ababa to join her family. She is now working in a small shop earning $34 a month. “Not even enough to pay my rent,” she said.
    No way back

    Compulsory national service is the “primary driver behind the mass exodus of thousands of young Eritreans each month who brave dangerous foreign journeys and callous governments to reach safety abroad”, Human Rights Watch has noted.

    Mickel, 22, fled the country after doing three years in the military – leaving him now marooned.

    “I’m afraid to return. I will end up in jail, or worse [if I do],” he told The New Humanitarian. “I don’t have a passport and I cannot move freely.”

    Attendance at Sa’wa, Eritrea’s national defence training centre, is compulsory for every high school student. Conscription can be indefinite. Human rights groups have repeatedly documented “slavery-like” conditions during military training at Sa’wa, including torture and sexual violence.

    “I wake up in the night and I feel the government is coming to take me.”

    "We are prisoners of our dreams in Sa’wa. We are not free. That’s why I ran away,” said a 27-year-old former physics teacher, who taught at Sa’wa before escaping.

    Filomon, a teenager, said he constantly worries he could be kidnapped in Addis Ababa by Eritrean secret police and taken back to Asmara – a fear heightened by the reopening of the Eritrean embassy in July last year.

    “I wake up in the night and I feel the government is coming to take me. I still feel they can arrest me at anytime,” Filomon told TNH. “I don’t feel safe here.”
    Travelling on

    For many Eritreans, life in Ethiopia is a frustrating state of limbo.

    Those who can, make plans to leave the country. For example, Robel, 27, is waiting for his application for a family reunification visa to the UK to be processed. In the meantime, his brother sends him money each month.

    Others contemplate more difficult journeys, north to Sudan and then the Mediterranean route to Europe via Libya – although that is tempered by the well-known dangers.

    “We are aware of the risk and we all know what’s happening there,’’ a young Eritrean woman said in reference to Libya, where migrants can face detention, extortion, and torture at the hands of militia, even before attempting the perilous sea crossing to Europe.

    It is difficult to gauge how many Eritreans are journeying on from Ethiopia, but according to UNHCR, it is a significant number, with many of them unaccompanied minors.

    Apart from the well-trodden journey north to Sudan, new routes are emerging – or being re-explored.

    For those who can afford it, Latin America is a growing destination – with the hope of then making it on from there to the United States or Canada – according to the UN’s migration agency, IOM.

    “Nothing is impossible if you have money,” said Ghebre, who arrived in Addis a few months ago but is already dreaming of a better life abroad, and who preferred to only give one name.

    Forged travel documents that can get you to Colombia, Ecuador, or Panama are available from smugglers in Uganda for $3,500 per person, TNH was told by several Eritreans in Addis Ababa. It is then a treacherous overland trek to Mexico.

    Getting through Mexico, though, is a major hurdle. A report this month by the Mixed Migration Centre noted that some 4,779 Africans were apprehended in Mexico from January through July of 2019 – almost a fourfold increase over the same period the previous year. Among those were Eritreans, according to IOM.

    Between 1,500 and 3,000 Africans are currently stranded in the southern city of Tapachula – although the Mexican authorities say they are on pace to triple the number of African migrants being processed this year, up from 2,100 in 2017.

    An unknown number of migrants are also camped on Mexico’s northern border – stalled by the tough new US immigration policies. In a one week period earlier this year, the US Border patrol at Del Rio stopped more than 500 African migrants – some with children – who had taken the risk to cross undocumented.

    Even if Eritreans do make it to the United States, there has been an “alarming uptick” in deportations by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency, known as ICE, which specifically targets them, according to news reports.

    The US Department of Homeland Security has also imposed visa restrictions on Eritreans, in direct retaliation for Asmara’s perceived non-cooperation over the deportation of its citizens – a move that in reality punishes the migrants rather than the government.

    https://www.thenewhumanitarian.org/news-feature/2019/10/21/Eritrean-refugees-Ethiopia-border-closures
    #fermeture_des_frontières #ouverture_des_frontières #paix #processus_de_paix #asile #migrations #réfugiés #réfugiés_érythréens #Erythrée #Ethiopie #Addis_Abeba #travail

  • Return : voluntary, safe, dignified and durable ?

    Voluntary return in safety and with dignity has long been a core tenet of the international refugee regime. In the 23 articles on ‘Return’ in this issue of FMR, authors explore various obstacles to achieving sustainable return, discuss the need to guard against premature or forced return, and debate the assumptions and perceptions that influence policy and practice. This issue also includes a mini-feature on ‘Towards understanding and addressing the root causes of displacement’.


    https://www.fmreview.org/return

    #revue #retours_volontaires #dignité #retour #retour_au_pays
    #Soudan_du_Sud #réfugiés_sud-soudanais #réfugiés_Rohingya #Rohingya #Inde #Sri_Lanka #réfugiés_sri-lankais #réfugiés_syriens #Syrie #Allemagne #Erythrée #Liban #Turquie #Jordanie #Kenya #réfugiés_Somaliens #Somalie #Dadaab #Myanmar #Birmanie #Darfour #réintégration_économique #réintégration

    ping @isskein @karine4 @_kg_