ethiopiantimes

October 10, 2011

Swedish journalists denied Ethiopia entry

Swedish journalists have been denied visas to Ethiopia to cover the trial of Martin Schibbye and Johan Persson who are charged with terrorism and face the prospect of long prison sentences.
Bildt rejects mounting Ethiopia criticism (7 Oct 11)
Swedish reporters plan prison protest (1 Oct 11)
Journalists ‘probing Lundin Oil’: report (13 Sep 11)
“If Swedish journalists are not allowed into the country we won’t find out what has happened,” author Ola Larsmo, chair of writers’ association Swedish Pen, told the Dagens Nyheter daily.

Sveriges Radio, Sveriges Television, TV4, Dagens Nyheter and the TT news agency have all applied for visas to cover the trial.

The trial is scheduled to begin on October 18th.

The two freelance reporters Martin Schibbye and Johan Persson were arrested in the beginning of July, in the Ogaden province of Ethiopia, bordering on Somalia, and charged with terror crimes.

The two journalists had entered the country illegally and were in the company of the region’s ONLF guerrillas at the time of their arrest.

From the beginning the pair have been adamant that they are innocent of terrorist charges.

Recently there has been speculation in the Swedish media whether the two were in the country to report on Lundin Petroleum, a Swedish oil and mining company, at the time of their arrest.

Swedish foreign minister Carl Bildt has been criticised recently for his handling of the case.

Last Thursday Bildt rejected any claims that his previous involvement with Lundin Petroleum would have any impact on dealings with Ethiopia in the reporters’ case.

“Why would it? There is no conceivable reason for that. I don’t believe that Lundin Petroleum is in that area but even if they were, it would be totally irrelevant,” Bildt said.

Advertisements

Leave a Comment »

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Create a free website or blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: