Journalist Gobeze Sisay’s court proceedings. What did the Prime Minister say about the negotiation?
Gobeze, editor and founder of the privately owned YouTube-based broadcaster Voice of Amhara, told CPJ that he believed some of the men were members of the Ethiopian National Defense Force, saying that one of them wore an ENDF badge and another mentioned that they were taking him to Tor Hayloch, where the ENDF has a facility.
He said the men held Gobeze for more than a week, blindfolded him, and repeatedly questioned him about his critical reporting and affiliations with opposition political groups. On the evening of May 9, the men warned Gobeze to stop his critical reporting or they would detain him again, and then released him near his home, the journalist told CPJ.
“The more than week-long detention of journalist Gobeze Sisay by suspected Ethiopian security agents is an affront to the rule of law and due process. Authorities must act decisively to stop such illegal conduct, or become complicit and disregard basic human rights,” said Angela Quintal. CPJ’s Africa program coordinator in New York. Instead of arresting reporters, the government must act swiftly to expose those within its ranks who seek to silence the press, and should publicly commit to ensuring that all journalists can work safely without fear of arrest or prosecution in Ethiopia.