The use of conscripted labour in EU projects and Eritrea’s engagement in committing human rights violations in the Tigray Region have prompted the European Commission (EC) to “de-commit” more than €100 million from eight upcoming Eritrean development projects. A letter written by Jutta Urpilainen, European Commissioner for International Partnerships, revealed that nine projects worth €141.3 million were initially approved for implementation through the EU Emergency Trust Fund for Africa (EUTF) but due to concerns over Eritrea’s stance on human rights, only one project, valued at €19 million, was disbursed. This recent move has highlighted the friction within the EU’s “dual-track” approach to Eritrea which attempts to mix development assistance and political dialogue.
In this week’s news highlights: UN states there is “no proof of Eritrean withdrawal” from Tigray in UNSC meeting; Doctors report rapes of women in Tigray committed by Ethiopian and Eritrean armies; Reporters Without Borders seeks higher review in case of Dawit Isaak; Alex de Waal argues that the World Bank should stop funding Ethiopia; World Food Program halves South Sudan refugee food rations due to funding issues; Kenya’s High Court temporarily suspends the shutting down of refugee camps; Rising violence in Sudan leaves thousands of refugees displaced; Over 40 refugees drowned near Djibouti; Libya releases alleged human trafficker from prison; One dead and two injured in Libyan migrant facility centre shooting; CEAR warns of new ‘containment policy for migrants’ in Canary Islands; Four deaths recorded off Canary Islands; Italian prosecutors wiretapped journalists and human rights organisations in migration-related investigation; Spanish rights activist accuses Spain and Morocco of harassment; International Organization for Migration calls for international support for the families of missing migrants.
In this week’s news highlights: UNHCR confirms destruction of refugee camps in Ethiopia; Reports of forced displacement of Tigrayans in western Tigray region by Amhara troops; Report of meeting between Eritrean and Ethiopian senior officials and foreign experts in Tigray; Kenya aims to close two refugee camps housing Somali refugees; Joint EU-IOM plan for returning migrants from Libya to Horn of Africa and other countries; IOM appeals for $99 million for migrants stranded in Yemen; Around 1000 migrants intercepted and forced to return to Libya; Spanish NGO rescues more than 200 migrants and refugees at sea; IOM report on high number of deaths at sea; EU to consider visa restrictions for 13 African and Middle East countries; EU Commissioner calls on Greece to investigate allegations of illegal pushbacks; Drones used for surveillance on migrants and refugees at EU external borders; Angela Merkel approves the EU-Turkey deal on migration; and IOM analysis on benefits of migration on communities.