Following the Letter of Petition by Mekete Tigray UK to the UK Government on Abiy Ahmed's gross human rights violations in Ethiopia, the British Foreign, Commenwealth, and Development Office have responded as per the below-attached letter. The key takeaways are that (i) they are aware of the allegations, in particular, Amnesty International Report; (ii) the British Ambassador in Ethiopia and the British Foreign Minister for Africa has spoken to Ethiopia's Deputy MP, Foreign Minister, and the Oromia President about human rights violations in Ethiopia and has requested investigations; (iii) They have expressed to the Ethiopian Government about " the need for more peaceful dialogue between different groups in Ethiopia and for space to be given for political debate" (iv) the UK government have noted that elections were held in Tigray and were conducted peacefully.
It now appears that the Western Governments are pressing the Abiy Regime for political dialogue and have accepted Tigray's peaceful election, which all goes to show the importance of the Diaspora's struggle against the dictatorial regime in Ethiopia.
Mekete Tigray UK
Dear Mekete Tigray Steering Committee,
Thank you for your email of 26 August to the Prime Minister about reports of human rights violations in Ethiopia. I have been asked to reply as the Desk Officer responsible for Ethiopia at the FCDO.
Whilst the UK has been broadly encouraged by, and supported, the efforts taken by the Ethiopian government to open the political space, we have been concerned to hear about incidences of violence across the country. We noted allegations, in reporting from Amnesty International earlier this year, of abuses by regional and state security actors, and our Ambassador to Ethiopia raised this with Ministers from the Ethiopian Government. The Ethiopian Government have now committed to an investigation of these allegations.
The Minister for Africa, James Duddridge MP, visited Ethiopia from 27 – 29 July and was able to discuss the situation in Ethiopia with the President, Deputy Prime Minister, Foreign Minister and the President of Oromia Region. The Minister expressed the need for more peaceful dialogue between different groups in Ethiopia and for space to be given for political debate. I note that elections were held in the Tigray Region on 9 September and were conducted peacefully.
It our hope that the political situation will improve for the people of Ethiopia. We will continue to consider a range of approaches in tackling and addressing human rights and consider what further support we can provide.
East Africa Department Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office
Read Full letter here UK-Govt-Response-to-Mekete-UK-Letter-092920
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