The 40th Session of the UN Human Rights Council, currently holding chain of meetings in Geneva, has once more witnessed that Eritrea is not showing any signs of change in its bad human rights record.
Speaking at the interactive dialogue on Eritrea on 11 March 2019, senior UN human rights officials and vast majority of country delegates reprimanded the Eritrean regime of its continued failure to implement hundreds of recommendations urging it to improve the human rights and political situation in the country.
Deputy UN Human Rights Commissioner Kate Gilmore made yet another desperate yet strong appeal to the Eritrean regime to listen to international calls to be kind to its own people by correcting its past. She hoped that the Eritrean authorities will consider "shifting from security to development" of their nation.
The newly appointed Eritrea Human Rights Rapporteur, Daniela Kravez, also presented her first ever oral report to the Human Rights Council and asked Eritrean authorities to take the new opportunities opened with the peace accord with Ethiopia. She regretted the absence of basic human and political rights in Eritrea for such a long time and the only prospect for change depends on starting to introduce the rule of law in the country. The Eritrean delegate, the same Tesfamichael Gerhatu, denied all charges and repeated cried out that "there is no human rights crisis" in the country. (For full story, see link: http://www.harnnet.org/index.php/articles-corner/english-articles/item/5426-human-rights-council-holds-enhanced-interactive-dialogue-on-the-situation-of-human-rights-in-eritrea).
On the other hand, an event on Eritrea was organized at the UN Geneva offices on 12 March coordinated by Dr. Daniel Mekonnen, Director the Eritrean Law Society. Panelists were Mr. Habteab Y. Ogubazghi, former judge of the Last Court of Appeal in Eritrea, and Ms Jelena Aparac, a member of UN Working Group on mercenaries. The former spoke on the situation of the existing judiciary system in Eritrea and the latter updated the audience on the ongoing legal case of Eritrean victims against the Canadian Nevsun company.
Meanwhile, another important two-day meeting on Eritrea is underway at the Wilson Palace, headquarters of the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). A committee of experts is grilling the Eritrean delegation with very difficult questions on human, political and civil rights on Eritrea. (Full report on those critical meetings will follow soon).