Arbi Harnet in Eritrea calls for an International Inquiry Into the Akria Protests

In a telephone interview with the Dutch journalist  Wim Brummelman, members of the Freedom Friday (Arbi Harnet) movement called for international inquiry into the events that transpired a week ago today.

The protests that were sparked by the arrest of a 92 year old community elder who was chair of an Asmara School, that the government was attempting to bring under its control, resulted in a volley of shootings and a spate of widespread arrests, including the arrest of underage children and women.

The spokes person for Arbi Harnet in Asmara,  confirmed that despite reports to the contrary  to date they haven’t come across any fatalities as such. He contends that this is due to the fact that soldiers refused to shoot directly at people: "They did not shoot the people. That, they refused. "

In addition the spokes person, a Christian himself,  explained that despite the fact  that the protests started at an Islamic school the march was soon joined by Christians stating ,"Muslims and Christians are united. They want the government to stop interfering with their education. That's why the people got up the street".

And he adds, the matter is not just a question of religious freedom it is about all aspects of human rights in Eritrea "This regime puts [restrictions] in place all possible freedoms of citizens. Therefore, so many people flee Eritrea. That has to stop. Therefore, we pray that this government disappears. "

Finally the spokes person for the underground movement , in Asmara, stated that although now the calm seems to have returned, resistance will continue   " Of course I'm afraid. So many people are afraid. We run great risks. There will be new protests. Perhaps at a small scale in the beginning, in different places. And maybe that sounds like something big. That's why it's so important that the world knows what's going on here. "


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Arbi Harnet was established on 11/11/11, as a diaspora based movement with the aim of linking the diaspora struggle for justice in Eritrea to the movement inside the country.

Working with secret cells inside Eritrea Arbi Harnet is now an underground movement inside the country.

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