following Rule 115 of the Rules of Procedure,
by Ģirts Valdis Kristovskis
on behalf of Union for Europe of the Nations on the situation in Ethiopia
NB: This motion for a resolution is available in the original language only.
European parliament resolution on the situation in Ethiopia
The European Parliament,
having regard to its previous resolutions on human rights violations in Ethiopia and other African, Caribbean and Pacific countries;
having regard to Rule 115 of its Rules of Procedure,
whereas it has been reported by the European Union Election observation mission to Ethiopia and by the European Parliament's observation mission to Ethiopia that the way in which the votes were counted and the results released following the March 2005 elections puts in doubt the transparency and fairness of the elections.
whereas about 150 complaints on the election process had already been received;
whereas the Ethiopian President has banned outdoor assembly (demonstrations), and has enforced the alleged action against members of opposition political parties during the pre-election period, although the state authorities of the country declared the elections to be free, democratic and fair;
whereas various human rights organisations and Ethiopian society, mainly youth and students, call for academic freedom, freedom of assembly, freedom of speech, the right to form unions and the right to publish a students' newspaper;
whereas the large student protest demonstrations took place on 15 May 2005 following the announcement of provisional results from the parliamentary elections of 15 May 2005 by the National Election Board of Ethiopia;
whereas the participants of this demonstration were beaten with batons and rifle butts by the police and the Ethiopian government sent forces to arrest protesting students, and large numbers of demonstrating students have been detained
whereas a number of violent clashes between state authorities and the general public, mainly students, have started in the capital since the demonstration of 15 May, for example at Debub University in Awassa in the Southern Region, 300 kms south of the capital; Jimma University, 300 kms south in the Oromia Region; and Gondar University in the north;
whereas the Federal Commissioner of Police of Ethiopia released without charge 690 detainees arrested between 6 and 10 June in post-election demonstrations, while thousands of others are reported to remain in incommunicado detention;
whereas the remaining detained students are being kept in custody on criminal charges for long periods of time and are at risk of torture, ill-treatment, and enforced "disappearance".
expresses sympathy and solidarity with the people of Ethiopia;
recalls that respect for human rights, democratic principles and the rule of law is laid down in the Cotonou Agreement;
reiterates that the fundamental rights of freedom - freedom of speech, including through the channels of the press, academic freedom, freedom of assembly and the freedom to form trade unions, including students' unions - are of the highest importance for stability and security in Ethiopia and the whole region;
calls for the immediate release from detention of all political opposition officials, activists and supporters, as well as student demonstrators, or the charging of prisoners arrested under the due processes of the law;
underlines that access must also be given to these prisoners, especially their family members and the human rights defenders;
condemns all attacks by state authorities on opposition activists and supporters, human rights activists and organisations, the free press journalists and the opposition parties;
condemns the Prime Minister’s ban on demonstrations for a month after the elections in Ethiopia;
calls for fair treatment of the opposition political parties and organisations, by restoring media access to them;
is concerned about the recent Ethiopian elections, expresses concern over the violence of fair and democratic election principles;
asks for the complaints procedure, agreed by the government, opposition and observers and urges all parties to engage in it in order to find out exactly what happened after the polls were cast and before they were counted;
welcomes the fact that a joint investigation committee has been set up by the National Election Board of Ethiopia, including opposition representatives and election observers from the European Union and US Carter Centre;
emphasizes that the successful resolution of the post-election situation is vital not only for Ethiopia but also for the peace and stability in whole region and for the EU's relationship with the entire continent.;
instructs its President to forward this resolution to the Council, the Commission and the co-presidents of the ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly, the Ethiopian Government and the OAU.