Ethiopia: Two journalists fled persecution


Two Ethiopian journalists say they have fled their country and have sought refuge in neighboring Kenya after unrelenting threats and persecution by Ethiopian regime security.

Publisher and managing editor of “Yegna Press,” Ermias Seyoum and its editor-in-chief, Mesfin Zeleke told ESAT on the phone that they decided to leave the country after security forces threatened them with imprisonment if they did not leave the country.

Ermias said security forces had stopped the printing of their newspaper at the press several times and he had been in and out of prison three times since he began the newspapers five years ago.

“Every time we publish stories about the anti-government protests or stories about opposition political parties or dissidents, they come to our office and threaten us not to do the same again,” Ermias said on the phone from Kenya.

“Security forces came to our office one day and took away everything saying they needed to audit us. Then they told us that we didn’t pay enough taxes and took us to court,” said Mesfin.

A leading jailer of journalists, the Ethiopian regime had a dozen journalists behind bars, while hundreds of other journalists have been forced into exile.