On 23/01/2018, I have encountered a shocking video via facebook links. I tried to see it again and again simply because I can not believe the inhumane acts I saw in the video. It is extemely shocking.
It is not only the video that made me shocked but remembering the inhumane treatement Eritreans are facing back home under the brutal dictatorial regime of PFDJ, especially in the religious minorities like Jehovah, Pentecostal Church Followers, Orthodox Reformist Movement members and other Islamic sects.
Eritrea is one of the worst abusers of Human Rights, especially Right to religion and worship. According to USA, Eritrea is considered as “country of particular concern(CPC)” since 2004.
In the USA International Religious Freedom Report of 2017, the report summary says;
“The Eritrean government continues to repress religious freedom for unregistered—and in some cases registered— religious communities. Systematic, ongoing, and egregious religious freedom violations include torture or other ill treatment of religious prisoners, arbitrary arrests and detentions without charges, a prolonged ban on public religious activities of unregistered religious groups, and interference in the internal affairs of registered religious groups. The situation is particularly grave for unregistered Evangelical and Pentecostal Christians and Jehovah’s Witnesses. The government dominates the internal affairs of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Eritrea, the country’s largest Christian denomination, and suppresses the religious activities of Muslims, especially those opposed to the government-appointed head of the Muslim community. In light of these violations, USCIRF again finds in 2017 that Eritrea merits designation as a “country of particular concern,” or CPC, under the International Religious Freedom Act (IRFA). The State Department has designated Eritrea as a CPC since 2004, most recently in October 2016.”
This being the fact, Eritrean refugees who are living across the world are also going at war on different religious followers, especially against the Pentecostal Church members. As you can in the link below, three Eritreans who live in Tel-Aviv are beating two Christian Street Preachers. The victims are yelling in the name of Jesus the Lord while they were beaten.
I have tried to get some information what the reason could have triggered such violent act. What I got left me rethink if violation of religious freedoms is only limited to state sponspored acts.
According the information I got, Eritreans who live in Israel have almost “zero tolerance” to Pentecostal Church followers and it is not unusual to victimize the members who happen to preach in streets.
I have given a thorough presentation about the event via live facebook. The feedback I received is encouraging as many came to condemn the acts but very few Eritreans who happen to live in Israel tried to prove that what happened to victims was right. These few people are of course with the ring of extremists who are working to discriminate the Church members.
This proves me that acts of Eritrean Christian Extremists in Israel over Pentecoste followers is a continuation of the evil acts that is happening in Eritrea. And this extremism has extended to Israel, where there is freedom of beliefs.
This is an extreme violation of human rights and it has deep roots in the Eritrean religious freedom violations and Discrimination on religious minorities (Article 18 and Article 2). Even in the Commision of Inquiry -Eritrea(COiE) 2015 and 2016 report United Nations Human Rights Council, the report has conclude that widespread and systematic human rights violations that amount to crimes against humanity has been happening in Eritrea since 1991. And religious rights violations is the top list.
Article 18 says:
Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief, and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief in teaching, practice, worship and observance.
Therefore, what has happened in Israel against the Pentecostal Church members is not a normal phenomenon. The world needs to acts and we Eritreans must come out and condemn such acts. We can not keep silence when our rights are continuing to be violated even when we are living outside our country.
And I call Israel to take all necessary measures to arrest and give justice to those who committed these inhumane acts. It is against Israeli’s law. Hence, Israel has an obligation to observe its rule of law.