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Ethiopia / Djibouti: Further information on fear for safety / refoulement and new concern: "disappearance"

, N° d'index: AFR 04/002/1996

Girmay Moges Newaye-Mariam, aged 38; new names: Muhyadin Muftah, Aydrus Hussein and six others: Girmay Moges Newaye-Mariam, an Ethiopian refugee, is still "disappeared" in Ethiopia after being sent back from Djibouti. Muhyadin Muftah, deputy general secretary of the Afar Revolutionary Democratic Unity Front, an armed opposition group, and Aydrus Hussein, former member of the Somali Regional Assembly, were arrested in Djibouti with six Ethiopian Somali businessmen on 1 September 1996. They were reportedly handed over to the Ethiopian authorities and have since "disappeared" while in secret detention.

EXTERNAL AI Index: AFR 04/02/96
17 September 1996
Further information on UA 211/96 (AFR 04/01/96, 23 August 1996) - Fear for
safety / Refoulement and new concern: "Disappearance"
ETHIOPIA / DJIBOUTIGirmay Moges Newaye-Mariam, aged 38
new names: Muhyadin Muftah
Aydrus Hussein and six others
Girmay Moges Newaye-Mariam, an Ethiopian refugee, is still "disappeared" in
Ethiopia after being sent back against his will from Djibouti.
Eight more Ethiopian government opponents have also been detained in Djibouti
and sent back to Ethiopia, according to Amnesty International's information.
This appears to follow a new security agreement between the two governments.
Muhyadin Muftah, deputy general secretary of the Afar Revolutionary Democratic
Unity Front (ARDUF), an armed opposition group in Ethiopia's Afar region in
the northeast, was arrested in Djibouti on 23 August 1996 and "disappeared"
some days later. According to unofficial sources in Djibouti he was handed
over to the Ethiopian authorities and has since "disappeared" while apparently
in secret detention in Ethiopia.
Aydrus Hussein, a former member of the Somali Regional Assembly in Ethiopia
and a former regional commissioner in Degabur town, was arrested in Djibouti
with six Ethiopian Somali businessmen on 1 September 1996. After about a week
in detention, they were reportedly handed over to the Ethiopian authorities
and have since "disappeared" while in secret detention in Ethiopia. All seven
are said to be supporters of the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF), which
is fighting the Ethiopian government in the Ogaden area in the southeast. Other
alleged ONLF supporters in Djibouti are said to be at risk of arrest and expulsion
to Ethiopia.
Amnesty International is concerned for the safety of all those listed above
after they were handed over to the Ethiopian authorities, and that they were
arbitrarily detained and forcibly returned to Ethiopia by the Djibouti
authorities.
FURTHER RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express/
airmail letters in French/English to Djibouti and in English to Ethiopia, or
in your own language:
(A) To the Ethiopian authorities:
- expressing concern for the safety of Girmay Moges Newaye-Mariam, Muhyadin
Muftah, Aydrus Hussein and six other Ethiopian Somalis who are reportedly
detained in Ethiopia after being arrested recently in Djibouti and handed over
to the Ethiopian authorities;
- asking for a public statement of where they are held, and for them to be
treated humanely and given access to their families and legal counsel
(B)To the Djibouti authorities:
- expressing concern that Girmay Moges Newaye-Mariam, Muhyadin Muftah, Aydrus
Hussein and six other Ethiopian Somalis, all opponents of the Ethiopian
government, were detained in Djibouti and handed over to the Ethiopian
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authorities against their will and without any court process or reference to
the Office of the UN High Commissioner of Refugees (UNHCR)
- asking them to seek assurances of their safety from the Ethiopian authorities;
- calling for the Djibouti government to respect the principle of
non-refoulement in the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees.
APPEALS TO:
(A) Ethiopia:
His Excellency Dr Negaso Gidada
President of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia
Office of the President
P O Box 1031, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Ethiopia
Telegrams: President Negaso, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Faxes: +2511 552030
Salutation: Your Excellency
His Excellency Meles Zenawi
Prime Minister
Prime Minister's Office
P O Box 1031, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Telegrams: Prime Minister Meles, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Faxes: +2511 552030
Salutation: Your Excellency
Mr Mahteme Solomon
Minister of Justice
Ministry of Justice
P O Box 1370, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Ethiopia
Telegrams: Justice Minister, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
Faxes: +2511 550722
Salutation: Dear Minister
COPIES TO: diplomatic representatives accredited to your country.
(B) Djibouti:
His Excellency Hassan Gouled Aptidon
President of the Republic of Djibouti
BP 6
Djibouti
Republic of Djibouti
Fax: +253 355049
COPIES TO:
Executive Secretary
Office of National Assistance to Refugees (ONARS)
BP 55
Djibouti
Republic of Djibouti
and to diplomatic representatives of DJIBOUTI accredited to your country.
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PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 30 October 1996.

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