prisoner of conscience

Abbay Media News
Samuel Tafesse

Yeshiwendim Shumiye, who is an academic and one of the deans of  St. Paul Hospital Millennium College, was arrested four months ago by the Ethiopian regime. The reasons for his arrest, presented by the government, have changed over time: first, the regime stated that the arrest was because of ‘Yeshiwedinim’s provocation of university students to start a hunger strike’; then, the charge became ‘sheltering a supposed terrorist’. His family members claim that both charges are unfounded and that he is persecuted because of his ethnicity. It is to be remembered that the Ethiopian regime is–under the guise of terrorism–notorious for arresting many people without any evidence, especially those who are opposition party members.

Yeshiwendim is known to be a brilliant man who was in the midst of finishing up his thesis, sponsored by the University of Michigan. He was in the United States to present his studies when he had to go back to Ethiopia to finish up his field study. It was at that time the regime kidnapped him and threw him in prison. It’s been four months and he is yet to be formally charged. Just like all the other prisoners of conscience, he is languishing in jail unjustly.

The Ethiopian regime is arresting many Amhara and Oromo students like Yeshiwendim with impunity to suppress the growing descent among the populace.