The plight of Eritreans and the voice of a growing Eritrean diaspora in the UK is rarely heard, yet Eritrea is one of the poorest countries in the world and its people subject to gross human rights abuses.

According to the United Nations, the government of Eritrea is responsible for systematic, widespread and gross human rights violations, which has created a climate of fear and stifled dissent. Many Eritreans are subjected to forced labour and imprisonment, and hundreds of thousands of people have fled the country. A significant number of which have sought asylum in the UK.

Eritrea today 

  • No elections since 1993
  • No independent press since a government clampdown in 2001
  • Pervasive and ongoing restrictions of all freedoms, movement, expression and association
  • Arbitrary arrest with no fair trials or no trials at all
  • Indefinite compulsory military conscription and forced labour
  • Use of torture including widespread sexual violence against women and girls

Eritrea is one of poorest countries in the world. Its economy has been in chaos since the disastrous border war with Ethiopia in 1998-1999. Eritrea is also one of the most repressive states in the world, with severe limitations on rights and freedoms, including freedom of expression and information. The country is ranked last on the Reporters Without Borders World Press Freedom Index.

The lack of basic human rights and freedoms is a key driver of emigration, with Eritreans making up a significant proportion of the flow of refugees into Europe.

War on Want partner Eritrea Focus is at the forefront of the fight against the oppressive Eritrean regime.

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Civil rights activist, bishop and lawyer representing workers at Marikana, South Africa, are in London this week to hold platinum mining company Lonmin to account over 2012 Massacre.

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