Human Rights 

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Non-assistance to persons in danger

Failure of European institutions to protect conscientious objectors

(13.05.2019) On the occasion of the International Conscientious Objection Day on 15 May 2019, the European Bureau for Conscientious Objection (EBCO) red-flags the multiple discriminations that conscientious objectors to military service continue to undergo in Europe. In the run-up to the European elections, EBCO points moreover to the enduring omission of European institutions to take action against the violation of the human right to conscientious objection. “Non-assistance to persons in danger – this sums up the continued failure of major European institutions to support those who despite massive discrimination call upon the fundamental right of conscientious objection to military service”, EBCO’s President Friedhelm Schneider stated today.

Presentation of the declaration

Colombia: Statement of Conscientious Objectors

(26.04.2019) On this International Conscientious Objection Day, we stand in solidarity with conscientious objectors in Colombia, who refuse to be conscripted and bear arms despite various obstacles they face.

Below you will find a statement by conscientious objectors in Colombia, giving a background of their struggle and urging their government to act on a number of issues. If you would like to know more about the situation of conscientious objectors in Colombia you can read a recent report by ACOOC and Justapaz here  (in Spanish), or download its summary (in English) here.

Foundation Human Rights for Eritreans Summons EU to Stop Supporting Use of Forced Labour in Eritrean Project

(01.04.2019) The Foundation Human Rights for Eritreans, a Netherlandsbased organization of exiled Eritreans, is taking legal action against the European Union. The EU is financing activities in Eritrea for which forced labour is used. This is a clear violation of human rights and the EU’s adherence to international legal obligations. Today, the EU received a letter in which the Foundation asked the EU to immediately stop financing these actions.

Female Soldiers in Eritrea. Photo: Temesgen Woldezion

Eritrea: HRW raises concern as forced conscription continues

(16.03.2019) Human Rights Watch (HRW) has raised concern that Eritrea’s controversial policy of forced conscription continues, despite a peace deal signed with neighbouring Ethiopia last year.

Last year’s peace deal brought an end to the “state of war” between the two countries, prompting hope that Eritrea would bring an end to its forced conscription programme, which has been labelled as “enslavement” by various rights groups. However, HRW says no meaningful changes have been made to the policy since the peace deal was signed last year.

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