Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Urge acquittal of Ethiopian anti-poverty activists now

The treason trial of two coordinators of the Global Call to Action against Poverty (GCAP) in Ethiopia, Daniel Bekele and Netsanet Demissie, is at a critical moment. Trial observers believe they will receive a verdict by the end of July. If found guilty, these two courageous civil society activists may face life imprisonment, or even death sentences. Daniel and Netsanet are highly respected for their tireless advocacy on human rights, poverty reduction and social justice in Ethiopia. They were detained in November 2005, along with over 100 opposition politicians and journalists, following the highly criticised May 2005 national elections in Ethiopia. Only 10 people, including Daniel and Netsanet now await their verdicts.