Once again, Eritrea is facing the usual ritual that characterized the unjust and unfair treatment by some western countries with the hard-line positions against Eritrea in the pretext of human rights. The futile political ill-intent remains vilification, isolation, and destabilization of the nation. Moreover, the politicized HRC resolutions and mechanisms served as a continuation of the external existential threats including the 2010-2019 unjust sanction driven by the same western countries imposed under the umbrella of the UN. At the time the resolutions and mechanisms also served as a continuation of conflict in the Horn of Africa.
The above unjust and unfair treatment defies UN human rights resolutions and international principles that underline the vitality of dignified engagement and international cooperation predicated on partnership. Eritrea’s experience is a testimony that the confrontational approach does not create any dividend in the promotion of human rights. It is unprecedented that the approach is draining the overstretched resources that could have been used in other pressing priorities of greater significance.
In the above situation of existential external threats for almost two decades, Eritrea remained resilient and despite challenges and problems, tangible progress has been achieved including on human rights. After the peace, security, and development declarations with Ethiopia and Somalia in 2019, with a wider implication in the revitalization of the horn of Africa regional peace, security, and development, Eritrea has developed a national development road map.
Despite the COVID pandemic situation and the renewed futile efforts of hostile dominant forces with unwarranted geopolitical agendas and interests to abort the newly emerging regional dynamics in the Horn of Africa, including in the pretext of the Tigray crisis, Eritrea’s development effort in some productive sectors and critical areas of comparative advantages is going on and the effect of the pandemic is being controlled. The crisis was instigated by the premeditated attacks of the defunct TPLF clique for regime change agenda in Ethiopia and invade Eritrea, to make a regime change and occupy sovereign Eritrean territories. It is incumbent upon the HRC to rectify its view on the crisis and stop its allegations on Eritrea.
In essence, the draft resolution is based on the unacceptable and unproductive as well as already rejected Special Rapporteur report presented in the present session. Eritrea rejects the resolution aiming extension the mandate for a further one year and will not cooperate with the Special Rapporteur for the following reasons:-
- violates the principles of sovereignty and disregards Eritrea’s national context, needs, and human betterment ideals
- attempts to portray an unwarranted systemic human rights failure negating Eritrea’s ground reality and the attendant tangible progress as well as challenges
- relies on the unacceptable human rights benchmarks that undermine Eritrea’s national context, ownership, priorities, and human betterment ideas and has not created any dividend in the last ten years and will not in the future.
- is full of presumptuous qualifications and relies on unverified claims from dubious sources and others who have a long history of advocating for “regime change”
- There is no consent of Eritrea on the mandate
Nevertheless, the effort to mainstream human rights in national development is being strengthened and expanded. In this regard, Eritrea is committed to expand and strengthen engagement and international cooperation among others through the UPR and with the OHCHR on its three priorities presented to the office for technical capacity building. Nevertheless, it again rejects the continuation of unfair and unjust country-specific mandate under the new draft resolution being considered in this 47th HRC session.
In view of the above-stated position and the collective and shared responsibility that we all have to the ideals of humanity, human rights concerns ought to be addressed through genuine engagement and cooperation and decided by consensus. The situation is complicated by the protracted politicization of human rights creating polarization however dictates resort to voting. As such, consensus should not be a bunker to be utilized by certain western countries perpetuating political ill-intent in the pretext of human rights to subdue developing nations in particular.
In the above context, we call upon members of the Council with genuine positions in the promotion of human rights that befits the ideals of humanity to REJECT the draft resolution and send a strong message that business as usual is not the future. The need to establish a unity of thinking, practice, and organization against politicization that endangers the decisive importance of the HRC as a body that emerged as a result of the failed experience of its predecessor is still of decisive importance for consideration.
I thank you!