47 HRC: Item 2
Eritrean Delegation Statement on the SR Report
Geneva, 21 June 2021
The HRC has met again on another Special Rapporteur Report on Eritrea reflecting the allegations that have characterized the annual reports since 2012. The mandate is driven by geopolitical agendas and interests of certain western powers harbouring the political ill-intent to vilify, isolate and destabilize Eritrea and consequently had served as a continuation of regional conflict. Until ousted from power in 2018 after 27 years of rule in Ethiopia, the subversive clique, i.e. Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), and Eritrean surrogate groups it harbours served the stated political ill-intent.
The ill-intent of the report is reflected in its flawed methodology. In a futile attempt to portray a systemic failure that negates Eritrea’s resilient reality and progress, the report relies on unacceptable human right benchmarks and is full of presumptuous qualifications. This constitutes a violation of the UNGA resolution 60/251 and the code of conduct of special procedures which demand for “facts, based on objective, reliable information emanating from relevant credible sources and duly cross-checked”.
After the restoration of the Eritrea-Ethiopia peace in 2018 with impact in revitalizing the Horn of Africa regional dynamics, Eritrea has developed a national development road map. Despite the COVID 19 impact, the plan is being used to address the effects of the hostilities imposed on Eritrea and as a basis for post-covid development dynamics. The mandate’s allegations on “post-peace reform delays, including on national service” setting unjustified pre-conditions and pressures for hasty measures are thus unacceptable.
In this regard, the SR’s observation on national service and forced labour and the national service-illegal migration causality inference is baseless. Despite the futile efforts made as part of the failed hostilities to destabilize Eritrea by luring the youth through illegal world-wide migration networks, the system is effective in the upbringing and participation of youth in national development. Moreover, as part of the gradual effort to bring national service back to its statuary duration, various steps are being taken including the integration of national service members into the new government remuneration system.
It is unacceptable that the mandate oversteps its responsibility alleging Eritrea in the context of Ethiopia’s law enforcement operation in the Tigray region. The measure is in response to the TPLF’s premeditated attack on Ethiopia’s Northern Military Command stationed in the region. The TPLF launched the attack as an initial ground to overthrow the Ethiopian Government with subsequent plans that include invasion on Eritrea to advance its avowed regime change agenda as well as incorporate sovereign Eritrean territories.
Once the plan started to fail, the clique, its diaspora stooges, hired lobbyists, some western media and its handlers resorted to disinformation campaign using concocted baseless allegations of sexual violence, looting and crimes. This is pursued through fabrications, recycling of fake news and photo-shopped images from other conflicts and events. It is irresponsible that the mandate has followed suit of the same narrative and false propaganda scapegoating Eritrea.
Moreover, the same external entities and handlers of the TPLF clique that aided and abetted its murderous reign in Ethiopia and in the Horn of Africa for 27 years are again desperately working to resuscitate the clique from death. The on-going attempts to deflect attention from the crimes the clique perpetrated and downplaying its culpability is unacceptable and will not serve the cause of peace and security, and human right and development in the region.
Contrary to the false assertion made on Eritrea’s failure in cooperation, it remains committed to dignified engagement and international cooperation based on partnership. In particular, functional measures have been initiated to implement the 3rd UPR Cycle recommendations and the latest CRC and CEDAW Reports have been submitted. Moreover, Eritrea remains committed on its three priorities presented for OHCHR technical assistance but as expressed in the MOFA response, the OHCHR needs to revisit its road map.
In conclusion, Eritrea appeals to the UNHRC not to make decision relying on unacceptable recommendations that emanates from the present report’s flawed methodology, erroneous data and consequent bleak depiction of Eritrea’s reality. Furthermore, Eritrea cannot accept continued injustices and harassment and requests for the termination of a mandate which is unjust, unfair and has not created dividend in the promotion of human rights.
Let me note also that this statement highlights some salient features of the MOFA’s response document to the present SR report already communicated.
I thank you!