Medhanie Haile, a lawyer by profession, also worked for the Eritrean Ministry of Justice, and wrote articles calling for the rule of law to be firmly established in the country post-independence.
Medhanie Haile was the deputy editor of the Keste-Demena newspaper. Medhanie was a lawyer by profession who also worked for the Eritrean Ministry of Justice, and wrote articles calling for the rule of law to be firmly established in the country post-independence. He was arrested in 2001 along with 16 other journalists, for reporting around the G-15 letter, an open letter from prominent Eritrean politicians that condemned the actions of President Isaias Afwerki and his regime. He is being held incommunicado by the Eritrean authorities who refuse to disclose his exact location or details of his health and well-being. His arrest amounts to an enforced disappearance and the status of his health and whereabouts are unknown.
The African Commission on Human and People’s Rights ruled in May 2007 that journalists arrested in September 2001 in Eritrea, which includes Medhanie Haile, were being held in arbitrary and unlawful detention. It called upon the Eritrean government to release the men and compensate them. The Government of Eritrea has ignored the ruling and journalists arrested in September 2001 remain in detention.