Germany: Amnesty Human Rights Prize 2022 goes to Ethiopian Human Rights Council EHRCO

Amnesty International

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Germany: Amnesty Human Rights Prize 2022 goes to Ethiopian Human Rights Council EHRCO

The Ethiopian Human Rights Council (EHRCO) receives the Human Rights Award 2022 from the German section of Amnesty International. The award is given for selfless commitment to human rights in Ethiopia, which involves personal risk. The prize is endowed with 10,000 euros.

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For over 30 years, the independent Ethiopian Human Rights Council (EHRCO) has been the voice of human rights in Ethiopia. The employees investigate human rights violations, provide legal advice for those affected and are involved in human rights education. Their use is often associated with reprisals and personal dangers. The outbreak of the armed conflict in 2020 in the north of the country, especially in the Tigray region, makes EHRCO’s human rights work indispensable.

“The EHRCO is the voice of the unheard in Ethiopia,” says Markus N. Beeko, Secretary General of Amnesty International in Germany. “For 30 years, EHRCO has been fighting for those affected by human rights violations: its supporters have been insulted, imprisoned, tortured and even killed for this. Nevertheless, EHRCO has never allowed itself to be intimidated. Amnesty International is honoring this courage and commitment with the eleventh Amnesty Human Rights Prize. ”

“Receiving the award and working with international human rights organizations such as Amnesty International are of great importance to us. Human rights are universal and require cooperation and solidarity to improve human rights and democracy,” said Dan Yirga Haile, Executive Director of EHRCO.

“We now know that if something happens to us, others will raise their voices and stand up for us in solidarity. In Ethiopia, the government and politicians suppress many popular voices in various ways. These voices do not receive the attention they deserve. The human rights award of Amnesty International is helping to make these voices heard by recognizing EHRCO’s tireless commitment to human rights over the past thirty years.”

Since the armed conflict in northern Ethiopia began in November 2020, Amnesty International has observed that all parties to the conflict are responsible for gross human rights violations, including extrajudicial executions and sexualised violence against women and girls. These constitute violations of international humanitarian law, war crimes and, in some cases, possible crimes against humanity, according to Amnesty International. Millions of people have been internally displaced and millions of people in Tigray and neighboring regions are being denied humanitarian assistance. Clashes between the armed groups claimed at least 1,500 lives, according to Amnesty. Police have been arbitrarily detaining people coming from Tigray or working on the conflict since early 2021.

On the fourth anniversary of Abiy Ahmed Ali’s presidency on April 2, 2022, Amnesty International is calling on the government of Ethiopia to allow independent human rights organizations such as EHRCO access to the conflict region of Tigray, to protect journalists and human rights activists and to guarantee their freedom of expression and freedom of the press, arbitrary arrests of journalists and human rights defenders and to release all those detained on political or ethnic grounds.

Addressing Germany, Markus N. Beeko says: “The federal government must implement its commitment to a new foreign policy based on human rights in a coherent and concrete manner. The supporting element of the cooperation with Ethiopia must be the support of civil society by the federal government. In this important African partner country, the civil society Space is again massively restricted – the federal government can and must support civil society and help protect human rights defenders.”

Background Human Rights Award

Every two years, the German Amnesty section honors personalities and organizations that work for human rights under difficult conditions with the human rights prize. The aim of the prize is to recognize the commitment of these people, to support and protect them and to make their work known to the public. The award is endowed with 10,000 euros, which is traditionally donated by the “Human Rights Foundation – Amnesty International Foundation”. In 2022, the Amnesty Human Rights Prize will be awarded for the eleventh time. Previous award winners have included: sea rescue crew Iuventa10 (2020); Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture, Cairo (2018); Alice Nkom, Cameroon (2014); Svetlana Gannushkina, Russia (2003).

Appointment notices

the press conference with the award winner Dan Yirga Haile takes place on May 24, 2022. An appointment notice will be given the week before.

the award ceremony with international guests takes place on 30th May 2022 at the Maxim Gorki Theater in Berlin. You can follow the event via live stream or get accreditation.

Dan Yirga Haile, Executive Director of EHRCO, will personally accept the award. he is for Interviews in Berlin from the May 23 – 30, 2022 accessible.

For interview requests, also with the award winner, please contact the press office.

AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL is a human rights organization independent of governments, political parties, ideologies, business interests and religions. Amnesty has been campaigning for victims of human rights violations around the world since 1961 with campaigns, letters of appeal and documentation. The organization has more than seven million supporters worldwide. In 1977 Amnesty received the Nobel Peace Prize.

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Original content from: Amnesty International, transmitted by news aktuell

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