"The thing that lies at the foundation of positive change, the way I see it, is service to a fellow human being." - Lech Walesa

Friday, 18 July 2014

Ethiopian Bloggers, Journalists Charged with 'Terrorism' .....AFP

Addis Ababa:  A group of Ethiopian bloggers and journalists detained for nearly three months have been charged with terrorism for having links to an outlawed group and for planning attacks, a judge said Friday.

The seven members of the blogging collective Zone Nine and three journalists were arrested in April, prompting an outcry from rights groups who said the case was an assault on press freedom.

The group is accused of planning attacks in Ethiopia and working in collusion with the US-based opposition group Ginbot 7, labelled by Ethiopian authorities as a terrorist organisation.

"They took training in how to make explosives and planned to train others," Judge Tareke Alemayehu told the court.

The Zone Nine website, proclaiming "we blog because we care!" features mostly social and political commentary, often critical of the government.

Monday, 14 July 2014

Ethiopia: UK Aid Should Respect Rights

Ruling Permits Review of Development Agency’s Compliance
JULY 14, 2014

(London) – A UK High Court ruling allowing judicial review of the UK aid agency’s compliance with its own human rights policies in Ethiopia is an important step toward greater accountability in development assistance.

In its decision of July 14, 2014, the High Court ruled that allegations that the UK Department for International Development (DFID) did not adequately assess evidence of human rights violations in Ethiopia deserve a full judicial review.

“The UK high court ruling is just a first step, but it should be a wake-up call for the government and other donors that they need rigorous monitoring to make sure their development programs are upholding their commitments to human rights,”