(London- 16/07/2012) Eritrean human rights organisations welcomed the ground breaking resolution on Eritrea that the United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC) adopted at its twentieth session  on the 6th of July 2012. .

The resolution, approving the mandate for a Special Rapporteur who will report to the HRC and the UN General Assembly on the human rights situation in Eritrea, was submitted by Somalia, Nigeria and Djibouti and supported by a number of African and other states, was adopted by consensus at the 20th session of the HRC.

This is the first time the HRC has unanimously created a special rapporteur that was actively opposed by the country in question, indicating the rise in concerns over the state of human rights violations in Eritrea and the Council’s readiness to take bolder measures to address such gross violations.

Despite the mounting evidence to the contrary, in response to the resolution, the head of the Eritrean delegation claimed there were "no gross human rights violations in Eritrea.”

The Resolution is an outcome of the relentless joint advocacy engagement that human rights organisations carried out over several years. Human Rights Concern Eritrea (HRCE) has been instrumental in spear heading the campaign along with Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Christian Solidarity Worldwide (CSW).

Suwera Human Rights Centre, Release Eritrea, Eritreans for Human and Democratic Rights-UK, would like to take the opportunity to thank all those involved and the African nations who submitted the resolution, that would at long last focus the world’s attention on the human rights violations perpetrated against Eritreans by the regime in Eritrea.

Stating their readiness to cooperate with the Special Rappoteur, Human Rights Activists said they will be working with members of their respective communities, including with victims and families of victims, to compile evidence of the range of atrocities that is currently taking place in Eritrea. To this end they have also put out a call to members of the Eritrean communities across the world to take up this opportunity to come forth with their stories and tell the world what has been taking place in Eritrea.


Notes to the editor:

1. The State of Eritrea is said to be one of the world’s worst human rights abusers, where its records on freedom of press, freedom of religious worship, freedom of expression and association as well as its policy of perpetual National Service for people between the ages of 18-50 has been of concern over the last decade.

2. Suwera Human rights Centre is an Eritrean human rights organisation that has been recording and logging human rights abuse in the country.

Eritreans for Human and Democratic Rights UK (EHDR-UK) has been advocating for the respect of human and democratic rights in Eritrea since its inception in 2001.

Release Eritrea, is a human rights charity registered in the UK and works with victims of religious rights violations and refugees in Eritrea, as well as amongst Eritrean refugees in the region