Prosecutors have charged 7 individuals with terrorism
A new round of seven individuals have been charged with terror-related offense including conspiring, preparing and inciting acts of terrorism. This new charge adds to a spike in similar cases in Ethiopia since the country was placed under State of Emergency in Oct. 2016.
The seven individuals are: first defendants Olyaad Bekele and Iffaa Gammachu, as well as Bailu Necho, Qeneni Tamiru, Mo’iibul Misganu, Seena Solomon (Pictured above) and Elias Kiflu. Seena Solomon is a singer and was detained at Ma’ekelawi for the last six months without charges; and according to this Facebook post, by Ethiopia Human Rights Project, she has been detained along with Elias Kflu, who is also a singer and the owner of Yaa’ii Film production studio, as well as first defendant Oliyad Bekele, a singer.
Please click here to view a music clip of Seena.
Mo’iibul Misganu. Photo: Atnaf Berhane. According to Atnaf, he was his cell mate in 2014 during the time members of the zone9 bloggers were in jail.
The charges accuse defendants of posing as journalists and producing materials for YouTube and sending them to Australia for uploading; writing dissident contents including poems and short stories and distributing the materials among protesters during the 2016 yearlong anti-government protests throughout the Oromia regional state. Prosecutors further said that defendants have committed the alleged offenses in Addis Ababa and Burayu area the Oromia regional state special zone on the western outskirt of Addis Ababa.
The charges have been filed at the federal High court 19th criminal bench here in the capital on June 29. Details of the charges were read to the defendants today. The court adjourned next hearing to hear the preliminary objection from defendants on July 14.
From Right: Olyaad Bekele, Seena Solomon, Mo’iibul Misganu & Elias Kiflu
1 – Olyaad Bekele Debre. Age: 26. Address: Addis Ababa, Kolfe Keranio Kifle Ketema
2 – Mo’iibul Misganu Workneh. Age: 30. Address: Addis Ababa, Gulele Kifle Ketema, Woreda 10
3 – Qeneni Tamiru Jaffer. Age 29. Address: Oromia Special Zone, Burayu
4 – Iffaa Gammachu Letta. Age. 44. Address: Oromia region, east shewa zone, Bishoftu city Kebele 14
5 – Bailu Necho Taddesse. Age. 26. Address: Oromia Special Zone, Burayu
6- Seena Solomon Ambechaa. Age 25. Address: Addis Ababa, Gulele Kifle Ketema, Woreda 10
7 – Elias Kiflu Bekele. Age 27. Address: Addis Ababa, Gulele Kifle Ketema, Woreda 08
Defendants are charged with:
First defendant Olyaad Bekele and Fourth defendant Ittaffaa Gammachu are accused of contravening Articles 32/1/ A & B as well as 38/1 of the 2004 Criminal Code.
In addition they are also accused of contravening Article 4 of the anti-terrorism Proclamation No. 652/2009.
Second, third, fifth, six and seventh defendants: Mo’iibul Misganu Workneh, Qeneni Tamiru Jaffer, Bailu Necho Taddesse, Seena Solomon Ambechaa and – Elias Kiflu Bekele are accused of contravening Articles 32/1/ A & B as well as 38/1 of the 2004 Criminal Code.
In addition they are also accused of contravening Article 7/1 of the anti-terrorism Proclamation No. 652/2009.
Defendants are under policy custody since:
Olyaad Bekele Debre – Since May 17/2017
Mo’iibul Misganu Workneh – Since Dec. 05/ 2016
Qeneni Tamiru Jaffer – Since Sep. 30/ 2016
Iffaa Gammachu Letta – Since Nov. 30/2016
Bailu Necho Taddesse – Since Dec. 12/ 2016
Seena Solomon Ambechaa – Since Dec. 03/2016
Elias Kiflu Bekele – Since Dec. 12/ 2016
PS: This information has been updated