Eritrean Law Society (ELS) participated in a major workshop organized by REDRESS and DefendDefenders – that took place in London from 2 to 4 October 2017. ELS was represented in the event by Mr. Amanuel Y. Abraha.
The workshop aimed at enhancing the capacity and knowledge base of Eritrean civil society actors on the applicability of the Principe of Universal Jurisdiction (UJ) to the situation of human rights in Eritrea. ELS’s participation in the workshop is premised on the Society’s long time commitment towards UJ as one major option for addressing the human rights crisis in Eritrea. With the appointment and establishment of the UN Special Rapporteur and the Commission of Inquiry (COI) on human rights violations in Eritrea, the issue became relevant more than ever. This was the case articularly with the publication of the second report of the COI in June 2016 in which the COI made explicit recommendation regarding referral of the Eritrean situation to the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Since its inception, with varied levels of engagement, ELS has conducted intensive research and documentation of human rights violations committed in Eritrea, including publication of scientific papers authored by some of its members. UJ is a well-known principle of international criminal law that provides possible avenues for accountability in the domestic courts of foreign countries.