Stop the Torture and Brutal Assault on Political Prisoners in Ethiopia

Wednesday, February 22nd, 2012
 Reports coming out of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia confirm that on Wednesday February 15th, 2012, the jailed leader of the opposition UDJ, Mr. Andualem Aragie, was physically assaulted by a prisoner who was set up and encouraged to do so by Ethiopian prison authorities.

According to reports, the ruling party through its prison authorities systematically allowed the said prisoner to commit this latest violence with impunity in order to terrorize and subjugate Mr. Andualem Aragie and other political prisoners into submission.

History tells us that the use of state-sanctioned violence (i.e beating, rape, abduction etc) by state-sanctioned groups is a

The jailed leader of the opposition UDJ, Mr Andualem Aragie, was physically assaultedMr. Andualem Aragie

classical approach used by many repressive regimes  (i.e Sudan, Zimbabwe, Burma) all over the world. Repressive governments typically use such approaches as an instrument of control, when their traditional approach could not bring them the results they expect.

The latest incident against Mr. Andualem  Aragie indicates the escalation of state violence which should be a serious alarm to  all who care about Human and Democratic Rights in Ethiopia.

SOCEPP CANADA condemns in the strongest possible terms the assault and torture of Mr. Andualem  Aragie  and other political prisoners. We call, upon the government of Mr Meles Zenawi to immediately stop such escalation of state violence and to fully protect the rights of Mr Andualem  Aragie  and other political prisoners in Ethiopia.

We urge Mr. Melese Zenawi and his government to free all political prisoners without delay. Once again, we would like to remind the regime in Ethiopia that violence only breeds violence. The way forward is respecting the human rights of all Ethiopians and engaging the opposition in genuine political dialog for a lasting solution through national reconciliation.

We call upon the Government of Canada, Canadian Parliamentarians, Human Rights advocates and the international community to take this latest escalation very seriously and review their assistance to the Ethiopian regime.  We are troubled to witness serious human rights violations, such as this, goby unnoticed by the international community and without consequence to the regime that continues to receive millions of tax payer dollars.


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