Ethiopian immigration officials detained a member of staff from ARTICLE 19’s East Africa office on 3 April for 29 hours without any access to legal advice or consular support. Fortunately, Patrick Mutahi, a trainer in protection, reacted according to strict ARTICLE 19 security protocols, notifying Ethiopian contacts of his detainment before his mobile phone was confiscated.
Following a rapid campaign for his release, Mutahi was deported back to Kenya on 4 April, and was warned that he would face jail if he returned.
ARTICLE 19 is one of the last remaining international human rights organisations working in Ethiopia and providing independent information to the UN Human Rights Council, and we are therefore concerned that the situation will only deteriorate further.
An Egyptian potential presidential candidate hopeful announced today that he will order the use of military force against Ethiopia if the latter does not suspend the construction of the Grand Renaissance dam.
In announcing his presidential bid at a press conference on Sunday, lawyer Mortada Mansour said that “water for Egypt is Egypt’s life”.
“There are signed international conventions… .There are two agreements, one in 1929 and the other in 1959 to regulate water usage between Egypt and Sudan,” Mansour added.
“There are international organizations that failed [to mediate] and Ethiopia stuck to its position. Just like they threatened to use their army, Egypt has an army.
In late January of this year, I wrote a commentary entitled, “Kenyatta at the ICC: Is Justice Deferred, Justice Denied?” In that commentary I openly expressed my angst over the endless delays, postponements and backpedalling talk about “false evidence” and “lying witnesses” surrounding the Uhuru Kenyatta trial at The Hague. I felt there was perhaps some monkey business going on. “I don’t want to say I smell a rat but I feel like I am getting a whiff. Is the stage being set to let Kenyatta off the ICC hook?”, I rhetorically asked. I am even more jittery now that Kenyatta’s trial is postponed once again.