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Swedish Journalists Imprisoned in Ethiopia Seek Pardon

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01/10/12

  11:47:30 pm, by admin, 318 words  
Categories: Ethiopia, Press

Swedish Journalists Imprisoned in Ethiopia Seek Pardon

Swedish Journalists Imprisoned in Ethiopia Seek Pardon

Peter Heinlein | Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

VOA News

Two Swedish journalists sentenced to prison in Ethiopia on terrorism charges have decided to seek clemency rather than file an appeal. Ethiopia's federal high court is currently hearing three other terrorism trials involving journalists and opposition politicians.

Journalists Martin Schibbye and Johan Persson said Tuesday they would not appeal their 11-year sentence for entering Ethiopia illegally and aiding an outlawed insurgent group.

As the deadline for filing an appeal passed, the pair issued a brief statement indicating they would ask for a pardon. The statement was read by Persson's father, Kjell Persson, by telephone from his home in Sweden.

“This is what they are saying in their own words. There is a tradition of grace and forgiveness in Ethiopia, and we chose to rely on this tradition," he said.

Sweden's ambassador to Ethiopia, Jens Odlander, said bilateral discussions are underway on the fate of the journalists.

"There is a dialogue, which is ongoing between the Swedish and Ethiopian governments. We have direct talks, government to government discussion," said Odlander.

Schibbye and Persson were arrested last June while traveling with fighters from the outlawed Ogaden National Liberation Front in Ethiopia's restive Somali region. A three-judge high court panel ruled last month that their association with the banned group was outside normal journalistic practice, and constituted support for terrorism.

The same federal court currently is hearing three other terrorism cases involving Ethiopian journalists and opposition politicians. All had been outspoken critics of Prime Minister Meles Zenawi's ruling Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front.

Human rights and press freedom groups have pointed to the arrest of at least 33 people on terrorism charges since last June as evidence that the government is using the anti-terrorism law to silence dissent.

Government officials, including Prime Minister Meles, have staunchly denied the accusations, saying police have produced compelling evidence against the defendants.

22 comments

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Comment from: Brook [Visitor]
Brook

And the KangaroO court Says wait until the deposited check is cleared at the bak off-shore and you’ll be on your way out Says the Adwa Chimp Melse Naziew. Sadly, As for the poor Ethiopians Journalists their case will be dragged forever and will be rattan in jail. I will do whatever I wanted because I can says the self elected uncrown king of Adawa Melses Naziew. We all know this was coming and he is becomes so predictable out of playing cards. Hopefully, GOD’S welling, we will catch him alive soon.

01/11/12 @ 00:07
Comment from: Bulga [Visitor]
Bulga

Heeee heeee..CJP and Amnesty where the hell are these crybabies along with the Disposed Diaspora politicians???.. ki kiiiii. This is a great experience and alert for them. This is what rule of Law and Sovereignty in practice!!Kneel down boy..don no no don’t cryy…no one listen to you. shhhhhhhhhhhh…

01/11/12 @ 00:43
Comment from: Heny Dikalaw [Visitor]  
Heny Dikalaw

Does anyone know such an egosting goverment, This begars think they can beg and yet break every rule in the civilized world. I think it is high time, time to evict the users and bring in the new ERA for poor Ethiopia.

Thank you Oromo Nation for
realizing you are also the AVITAR for your MOTHER LAND, and you joined your brothers the awaiting warriors now between the rest oppressed nation we will stop, the very handfull with thier mighty machines.

The current idiots do not understand destroying Ethiopia will also destroy them.

Cheers.

01/11/12 @ 00:56
Comment from: Mengistu [Visitor]
Mengistu

Good tactic by GoE, the usual old game of mercy and forgiveness. Here goes the saying, “you can’t teach an old dog a new trick” :):)

01/11/12 @ 00:57
Comment from: C'est moi senait [Visitor]
C'est moi senait

A weyanne baboon court house looks like a beggar toilets, broken sign. high court ….some body help them to fix the sign…these chigaarams turned the court house to beggars concentration centre.

Or maybe they are as usual waiting the oxfam or red coss to fix for them. How ashamed to see that court……gimmatam weyanne.

01/11/12 @ 01:19
Comment from: Reporter [Visitor]
5 stars
Reporter

Release them, they are allowed to lie or break laws…

It’s called FREEDOM OF THE PRESS!

01/11/12 @ 01:24
Comment from: Heny [Visitor]
Heny

They must e jocking, these losers. The goverement as to be xtra cautious as it will creat unnecessary precedence.

01/11/12 @ 04:30
Comment from: godlessness [Visitor]
godlessness

The same old game !

01/11/12 @ 05:56
Comment from: gobena [Visitor]
gobena

Now the Swedish understand Ethiopia has no rule of law but tell them you got to release them = PARDON

Sorry for helpless Ethiopian journalist

01/11/12 @ 08:37
Comment from: solo [Visitor]
5 stars
solo

ats melese sisegedulet des yelewal,atefah alatefah

01/11/12 @ 08:37
Comment from: South Africa [Visitor]
South Africa

Tell them for Wedi Bulga and Addis zemen!!!!!!!!We know befor took them in prison about this case.What kind of brain has TPLF?When they were in jungle they made foolish a lot of soldier coz they didn’t know how to read and write.Now you’r living in city,couldn’t cheat any one even 2 year old baby.Ato meles what’s wrong with u?May you know how to begging.Pls leave them free the journalists may they don’t know how to begging.Don’t look with one eye glass with everybody.

01/11/12 @ 08:48
Comment from: oneluv21 [Visitor]
oneluv21

I have an advice for the rat looking PM, release those swedish journalistor you will not get any handouts from the white man anymore as you do every year which you are addicted to.

01/11/12 @ 11:42
Comment from: oneluv21 [Visitor]
oneluv21

This fascist minority Ethiopian government is out of control, look at what he is doing now:

Eritrea Accuses Ethiopia of Blocking Satellite Transmissions

Eritrea’s government accused neighboring Ethiopia of jamming its satellite broadcasts and threatened to take legal action, the Information Ministry said.

Ethiopia has been warned by the Arab Satellite Communications Organization that the interference is illegal, the Asmara-based ministry said in a statement on its website.

Ethiopian government spokesmen Bereket Simon and Shimeles Kemal didn’t answer calls to their mobile phones seeking comment.

01/11/12 @ 11:47
Comment from: Shameful [Visitor]
Shameful

Give it 11 days and not 11 years, they would set free the guys of the hell, but unfortunately not your brothers who rotten in jail.
These guys were expected to join their family for Christmas too. So woyane’s soft side is in test right now. Some CASH will solve the problem:)
Just wait and see.

01/11/12 @ 12:52
Comment from: TEDDY [Visitor]
5 stars
TEDDY

As they did with opposition leaders and Free Press Journalists whom they
illegally detained .Agazi bandits are
once again trying to fool peoples .
“POLITICAL AND DIPLOMATIC PRESSURES ” never means seeking Pardon .For your Information it’s not the Crime Minister who has the power to dictate his wills ,but the
Swedish Government with the support of EU and the State Department .How can this evil guy paye his Agazis ,
bandas ,and all his Thuggy ass holes
infecting this website without EU and IMF Financial Assistance !!!!!

01/11/12 @ 14:03

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