Eritrea. At the beginning of the year, the regime
released several politically incarcerated journalists. Six
reporters from state radio were released on bail after five
years in prison. No justification was given, as otherwise
Eritrea was in last place on Reporters Without Borders list
of press freedom in the world.
COUNTRYAAH, there was no information on Swedish-Eritrean journalist Dawit Isaak, who has been imprisoned in Eritrea since 2001.
A Swedish preliminary investigation against Eritrean
authorities was discussed, but according to the prosecutor's
office, such a possibility would hamper Dawit Isaak's
A 500-page UN report in June showed that human rights
were systematically violated in Eritrea. People are
arrested, even children, without legal basis. Many are
tortured, killed or disappeared. The abuses have led to over
360,000 people moving the country. Thousands of Eritreans
flee every month, and there are refugees being shot to death
at the border. Many Eritreans have also drowned in the
Mediterranean on their way to Europe. The report called on
the outside world to protect Eritrean refugees and not send
them back to Eritrea.
UN reporters were not allowed to enter Eritrea. Instead,
they interviewed hundreds of refugees in several countries,
including Sweden where tens of thousands of Eritreans live.
However, according to the investigators, there were
unusually many in Sweden who did not dare to testify because
of fear of reprisals. The investigators perceived strong
contradictions between regime-critical and regime-friendly
refugees in Sweden. According to investigators, the security
service in Eritrea has built up an extensive network of
indicators that make people not trust each other, not even
their closest. Eritrea rejected the UN report as lying.
According to the regime, the refugee crisis is due to a
conspiracy staged by the CIA.
In September, the EU presented a proposal for a
development fund of EUR 200 million to Eritrea in the hope
of contributing to better conditions in the country and
reducing the reasons for escape. The five-year support
should not go through the regime but must be approved by it.
In October, ten players in Eritrea's football team jumped
off after a World Cup qualifier in Botswana, where they
received asylum. In Eritrea, sports are usually included in
the army, and several competitors have previously jumped