Eritrea: Statement by Ambassador Girma Asmerom During the UN Security Council Debate

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ASMARA (HAN) February 12, 2016 – Public Diplomacy and Regional Stability Initiatives News. 

Mr. President;

Distinguished Colleagues;

I would like to thank the Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela, in particular Ambassador Rafael Dario Ramirez Carreno, for organizing this important and timely debate on the Working Methods of Subsidiary Organs of the Security Council.

Given the complex and dynamic global environment improving the working methods of the Subsidiary Organs of the Security Council has paramount importance. Eritrea Strongly believes that a transparent and credible process in the Security Council is not a matter of an option but a necessity.

Mr. President,

For the sake of brevity, I would like to highlight the following three points:

1. Ensuring Comprehensive assessment of the impact of sanctions regimes: Once the causes for the sanctions are proven non-existent and their intended purpose is negatively affecting regional and international peace, security and development as well as the life of the people, the UN Security Council is duty bound to immediately and unconditionally lift sanctions. Legal and factual issues must be separated from politically and diplomatically motivated agendas. Let us not mix Oranges and Apples.

It has been six years since the UN Security Council imposed unjustified and politically motivated sanction against Eritrea. To continue maintaining the unjust sanctions against Eritrea when the two allegations for the imposition of the sanctions are clearly presented by the Somalia Eritrea Monitoring Group (SEMG) to be nonexistent it is not only a travesty of justice but collective punishment against the people of Eritrea. However, and more importantly, with the current political and security realities in the Horn of Africa and the Red Sea region maintaining unjustified sanctions against Eritrea undermines and limits the capacity of a UN member state to implement UN Security Council resolutions in combating global extremism and terrorism as well as meaningfully contribute to the maintenance of regional and international peace and security.

2. Transparency and information sharing: Sanction Committees, especially those dealing with country-specific sanction, need to regularly interact and share information and allegations with the concerned country. Countries under sanction have every right to receive the full contents of the draft and final report compiled by experts or monitoring groups in a timely manner. This will allow the Sanctions Committee to hear the views of the concerned country, which is consistent with the legal principles of “equality of arms” and “you are not innocent until proven guilty”. These methods will definitely ensure transparency. It must be underlined that Eritrea as a concerned country continues to be denied access to the monthly assessments as well as the draft and final report of the Monitoring Group.

3. Undertake rigorous examination of experts and monitoring groups’ reports: This is an important aspect of the work of the Sanction Committees. Eritrea strongly believes that Sanction Committees must ensure that the reports of the experts or monitoring groups meet the highest evidentiary standard as stipulated in the Report of the Informal Working Group of the Security Council on General Issues of Sanctions (S/2006/997) which, inter alia, underscores the need for the expert panels to rely on verified information and documents, as well as ensure that their “assertions are corroborated by solid information and that their findings are substantiated by credible sources”. The sources of the reports must be clearly identified and known. Sweeping statements such as “Information gathered from reliable sources, former officials” etc. must be rejected and cannot be the base upon which UN Security Council take decisions. The Sanction Committees must ensure the contents of the reports of panel of experts are within the purview of the mandate and must ensure that experts strictly respect and stick to their mandate. Whenever experts overstep their mandate, they should be instructed not to do so by the Committee and in the same vein when information provided by them found to be false must be corrected publicly and as soon as possible.

Again this has not been Eritrea’s experience. In addition to overstepping its mandate the Somalia Eritrea Monitoring Group (SEMG) has been reporting baseless allegations collected from nameless and faceless sources. In the context of maintenance of regional and international peace and security, the Group is only and clearly mandated to look into whether Eritrea supported al-Shabab in Somalia and the border dispute between Eritrea and Djibouti. However, overstepping its mandate, the SEMG continues to routinely deal with Eritrean and Ethiopian conflict, and does so in a manner that ignores context and ramifications. Another equally important aspect is, at least in Eritrea’s experience, the monitoring group have routinely reported uncorroborated allegations and refused to rectify them when those allegations were found not to be true.
In conclusion:

1. Since the SEMG has clearly stated “it has found no evidence of Eritrean support to al-shabab” and Djibouti Eritrea issue is being handled by the government of Qatar and the Qatar forces are deployed at the common border between Eritrea and Djibouti there is no imagined or real threat to international peace and security that Eritrea is involved. The Security Council must, therefore, immediately and unconditionally lift the sanction against Eritrea.

2. Given the current fight against global terrorism and extremism, lifting the unjust sanctions will enhance peace and security in the Horn of Africa and the Red Sea Region. On the other hand, the maintenance of the sanctions can only be a recipe for disaster and chaos.

3. The unjust sanction imposed against Eritrea has no linkage to Eritrea and Ethiopia conflict. However, in a manner that ignores and disregards context, perspective and ramification and in violation of its mandate and in an attempt to move the goal post, the SEMG has started to deal with Eritrean Ethiopian conflict. Once against Eritrea underlines that the conflict between Eritrea and Ethiopia is an issue between the occupied and the occupier. Ethiopian official’s constant military threat against Eritrea must be also taken into consideration.

For example:

– On 7 July 2015 the Prime Minister of Ethiopia speaking to his parliament said that “Ethiopia will be forced to take appropriate action against Eritrea.”
– On 9 August 2014 during an interview with the Washington D.C. based Radio Tsenat, the Prime Minister of Ethiopia clearly stated that “The no-war no-peace situation with Eritrea is over. Ethiopia from now on is ready to take military action against Eritrea.”
– On 17 April 2012, speaking to the Ethiopian Parliament the late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi stated that “The Ethiopian government has now decided to cary out more active policy, taking measured actions against Eritrea. The action will involve using all means at Ethiopia’s disposal to change the Eritrean government. The other major area where Ethiopia will further strengthen its activity is in supporting Eritreans in their campaign to change the government.”

The use or threat of use of force against any country big or small is a violation of the UN Charter and international law that should be condemned by the Security Council. If the SEMG and the Security Council want to be involved under the current agenda item their option is one and only that is to urge Ethiopia to unconditionally and immediately withdraw from sovereign Eritrean territories, including the town of Badme.

I thank you, Mr. President.

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8 COMMENTS

  1. Only regime change in Asmara can stop the forced mass exodus of men women and children it’s terrorist activities in Ethiopia , Darfur , and Al Shabab terrorist killer cartel .

  2. Ethiopia has a responsibility to stop Afeworki by any means necessary . Stop the terrorist HAMASEN narcissist tyrant ,The supreme ruler and father of all Eritreans and Africans .

    • Axmed,you are exposed in the open light day. Your government and you are behind all the lies against Eritrea in order to sanction it,look the people of Ethiopia. Oromo people are slaughtered by you, who is terrorist? no body can be cheated now,you signed in algers and after the court given the verdict, you want scape behind the criminal USA policy which is kill Eritrean and conquered the red sea.Your Centro ethnic bunch Weyani is falling from Ethiopian hand,15million are in hunger but the west are continue to lie the world the fastest developing country…weye…weye….Now Ethiopian people are raising to throw this ugly puppet liars.

  3. How can this stupid guy demand transparency at the UN security council while the evil regime in Eritrea has no transparency, no free press, no constitution, no parliament and its people has no freedom of movement or association. Specially nowadays no three people can sit together without prior permission from the regime. So what is this dictator’s servant trying to tell us? So, I tell him: First go and clean your house and rest in peace.

  4. I do not mind to criticize our government but you our ugly opposition who are simply working day in and day out to destroy your country. Let me give you example,when they call for sanction against the innocent Eritrean people your bunch supported it without any evidence.Tewelde Gebreslasse wrote official letter from addis to NATO in 2011 when Libya was burning, he called them to burn Eritrea.when EU want to give 200milion to the people of Eritrea your idiot bunch puppet of Weyani signed petition against your own mum and dad,but Alah/God is with the honest and inocient,they ignored you dirty bunches.Stifanos came back to your people stop doing like DONBAY AND MEHARENA we will never forget them, they burned us alive. Eritrea now at this time never kneel down to any power let alone the hated Centro ethnic weyany.

  5. Eritrea must be freed . Eritrea must belong to all the people of Eritrea . The Hamsen controlled tyrannical regime that forces non Hamasen Eritrean citizens to leave the country and beg for welfare support in Europe and America and tax the remittences these poor homeless refugees ( Usually $ 50 ) send to their parents and family is an ugly criminal act . Poor Eritreans can not say any thing against the dictator and his criminal gang because his informants must protect their families back home or else their family will be severely punished.

    • Axmed, i would like to add a comment. I am not from Hamassien but I know many Hamassien born people suffering equally. Isayas has no roots in Eritrea and what he wants is that we squabble among our selves by saying this man is Hamassien, Senhit,Seraye, Christian or Moslem etc. I knwo that the detention centers in Eritrea are full of all kinds of people who oppose the evil regime. So, lets try to be united and destroy the evil regime that is against every peace loving people Eritreans!! With respect!

  6. WE must work with Ethiopia and other willing democratic forces to change the criminal regime in Asmara run by three dozen HAMASEN security agents , Hamasen generals ,colonels , majors ,and hamasen spy agents , business men and women presided by their beloved killer in chief , father of wisdom , the all knowing and all hearing and all seeing the most supreme than KIM JUNG UN of North Korea his most excellent president ISAIAS AFEWORKI .

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