EPP Delegation Participates in Amnesty International Conference
in San Francisco.
The joint delegation of Eritrean People’s Party (EPP) foreign relations, EPP Women’s
League, and Eritrean Democratic Association (a non-profit human rights organization)
attended Amnesty International Western Regional Conference on November 7, 2009 in San
Francisco, California. The joint delegation included Mr. Tesfai Wodemichael (EPP Head of
Foreign Relations), Mrs. Asgedet Mihreteab (EPP Women’s League Representative & EPP
Foreign Relations staff), and Mr. Fessehaye Hagos (Eritrean Democratic Association board
LTR: Mr. Tesfai Wodemichael (Degiga), EPP Foreign Relations Head; Mrs. Asegedet
Mihreteab, EPP Women's League Representative & Foreign Relations staff; and Mr.
Fissehaye Hagos, Eritrean Democratic Association Board Member.
The principal theme for the conference was “Free and Equality in Dignity and Rights,” with
a major focus on building the capacity of advocates active in human right activities, and
streamlining ways and means by which human rights advocates can bring emergency
assistance to the needy effectively and expeditiously.
The three-day long conference (6-8 November 2009) stressed that raising awareness of
people as central to ensuring the protection of human rights; empowering and educating
people to fight against poverty, backwardness, and corruption; and resisting injustices
and human rights violations perpetuated by undemocratic and repressive governments.
Attending such an important conference gave a unique opportunity for our delegates to
participate in various working sessions, including meeting officials and representatives of
sections and groups responsible for different work areas in the Amnesty International. In
the open discussion, our joint delegation explained the pervasive injustices, sufferings,
and human rights violations facing Eritrean people, which are wracking the country with
political instability, famine, economic crisis, and migration of Eritreans in thousands to the
neighboring countries. The joint delegation also answered questions raised by the
participants over the dismal political and economic condition of our country.
The joint delegation to the conference further urged Amnesty International to pay utmost
attention to the suffering and gross human rights violations of Eritrean people. On their
part, officials of the Amnesty International acknowledged the current state of affairs of
Eritrea, and stated that Eritrea is one of the countries high on the list of the Amnesty
international priorities for which they said they have already began working on it.
The delegation had also a unique opportunity to meet with Mr. Larry Cox, Amnesty
International Executive Director; Professor Joe Watkins, Refugee Project Coordinator; Mr.
Jeff Bachman, Chairman Amnesty International Board of Directors USA; Mr. Samson Tu,
Senior Research Scientist; and Mr. Berhane G/Ngus, member of CiDrie. Both Mr. Samson
and Mr. Berhane are Local Amnesty
In addition to the above
interesting activities of
the joint delegation, the
involvement of Mr.
Berhane and his group in
a petition drive to
demand the release of
Eritrean prisoners was
unique and recognizable
in the conference. The
petition drive is just the
latest move among many
others on the part of the Local Amnesty International activists to bring the ongoing
injustices and gross human rights violation in Eritrea to the attention of the international
community. In the end, both the joint delegation and Mr. Berhane called on the
international community to mobilize resources and humanitarian aid to avert the unfolding
famine and economic crisis in Eritrea.
(Reported by EPP Department of Information and Culture)