Ethiopia: Information on the treatment upon return to Eritrea or Tigray of Tigrayans who lived in Addis Ababa and are members or supporters of the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Party (EPRP)
|Publisher||Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada|
|Author||Research Directorate, Immigration and Refugee Board, Canada|
|Publication Date||1 December 1992|
|Citation / Document Symbol||ETH12458|
|Cite as||Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada, Ethiopia: Information on the treatment upon return to Eritrea or Tigray of Tigrayans who lived in Addis Ababa and are members or supporters of the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Party (EPRP), 1 December 1992, ETH12458, available at: http://www.refworld.org/docid/3ae6abb126.html [accessed 9 December 2013]|
|Disclaimer||This is not a UNHCR publication. UNHCR is not responsible for, nor does it necessarily endorse, its content. Any views expressed are solely those of the author or publisher and do not necessarily reflect those of UNHCR, the United Nations or its Member States.|
The executive director of the Ethiopian Relief Association (ERA), who is also coordinator of the Eritrean Information Services in Canada based in Ottawa, explained in a telephone interview with the DIRB (21 Dec. 1992) that anybody, regardless of their ethnic or political persuasion, is free to return to Eritrea provided he or she meets the Eritrean immigration requirements and proves that she or he has valid reasons for going to Eritrea. He explained further that Eritrea considers Tigrayans and other ethnic groups in Ethiopia as Ethiopians. He acknowledged, nevertheless, that there are Tigrayans who have lived in Eritrea for more than 10 years but emphasized, however, that this does not make them Eritreans.
He explained that anybody going to Eritrea, including Eritreans, have to apply for a visa from Eritrean "consulates."
Eritreans, however, once they prove that they are Eritreans by birth, will be issued with an identity card. Members of the Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Party (EPRP) are subject to the same requirements. He further noted that people going from Western countries to Eritrea have to fly by Ethiopian Airlines and pass through Addis Ababa Airport in Ethiopia as this is the only airline that flies to Asmara, Eritrea.
It is important to note that two representatives, one from the Ethiopian Community Centre in Washington, D.C. and the other from the Coalition for Ethiopian Democratic Forces (COEDF) also based in Washington, D.C., noted that EPRP supporters would be targets for harassment if and when they return to Ethiopia because the party remains banned and the EPRP cannot hold meetings in the open in Ethiopia (Ibid.). The government follows the EPRP very closely and uses its embassies abroad to monitor the activities of opposition parties outside Ethiopia.
Coalition of Ethiopian Democratic Forces (COEDEF), Washington. 21 December 1992. Telephone interview with a representative.
Ethiopian Community Centre, Washington. 21 December 1992. Telephone interview with an immigration counsellor.