Ethiopia: Aid Workers

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office written question – answered on 26th November 2021.

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Photo of The Bishop of St Albans The Bishop of St Albans Bishop

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of reports that UN workers providing humanitarian aid are being detained by the Ethiopian authorities.

Photo of Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park The Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)

We are concerned by recent reports of the detention of several UN staff in Ethiopia. Expulsions and detention of key UN personnel will have a direct impact on the ability of the international community to deliver vital humanitarian assistance. On 30 September the Minister for Africa called on the Government of Ethiopia to reverse the decision to expel UN officials from the country. Our concerns were reiterated at the 48th session of the UN Human Rights Council on 4 October where a joint statement was issued by the UK Ambassador to the UN on behalf of over 40 countries, and we also raised this at the UN Security Council (UNSC) briefing on Ethiopia on 6 October. The British Ambassador to Ethiopia raised our concerns about ongoing detentions with President Sahle-Work on 12 November.

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