The Human Rights Official further denounced the arrests and detentions of Christians which, she confirmed, were on the rise in the Northeast African country. According to Ms. Kravetz, the arrests were not just unique to Christians, but targeted Muslims as well.
“Since my last update, the arrest of Christians who worship without government approval have continued. Many of those arrested remain in jail,” she said, adding, “The Muslim community has also recently been targeted.”
She explained that those arrested in Eritrea include local businessmen, religious teachers, and community leaders.
“Church based organizations have also experienced restrictions. Turning to the issue of political prisoners and prisoners of conscience, here again there has been no progress,” Ms. Kravetz reported.
She went on to lament about the lack of cooperation of the Eritrean authorities adding that “since March 2019 her various requests to meet with Eritrean officials have gone unanswered.”
(Story continues below)
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Pleading with the Eritrean government to respect human rights, she said, “A year on from joining the Human Rights Council, it is time for Eritrea to show that it is willing to take concrete steps towards upholding its international commitments.”
Responding on the allegations, representative of the Eritrean delegation Mr. Tesfamicael Gerahtu said that Eritrea's position deserved objective considerations in the context of what he termed “Eritrea's, resilient progress… the emerging transformation of peace and security in the whole republic, and region, as well as the continuing unfair and unjust treatment that Eritrea faces under the international human rights architecture.”
He added, “After two decades of the unfavorable international and regional situation that affected Eritrea's development, the Eritrea's peace and friendship agreement was signed, revitalizing the regional dynamics of peace and security in the whole Republican Region.”
Mr. Gerahtu asked the UN Human Rights Council to terminate what he described as politically motivated, ill intent towards Eritrea, and instead to move forward in a fair and just way, “far from political considerations, interests and status.”
Ignatius Takura Mugwagwa, the UN Geneva Correspondent for EWTN Deutschland and Christian Peschken (EWTN Deutschland) contributed to the reporting of this story
Agnes Aineah is a Kenyan journalist with a background in digital and newspaper reporting. She holds a Master of Arts in Digital Journalism from the Aga Khan University, Graduate School of Media and Communications and a Bachelor's Degree in Linguistics, Media and Communications from Kenya's Moi University. Agnes currently serves as a journalist for ACI Africa.