Around 150 Eritrean asylum- seekers protested outside the Eritrean Embassy in
Ramat Gan on Friday morning, in a show of solidarity with Eritrean political
prisoners and a group of army officers who staged a failed coup in Asmara last
The protesters called for the release of political prisoners and
shouted for the implementation of the 1997 constitution, the same demands made
by a group of army officers who stormed the state television headquarters at the
Ministry of Information in Asmara on January 21 and forced the station off the
air, before government forces managed to retake the offices later in the
Speaking in English, asylum- seeker Isaias Teklebrhan gave a speech
calling for “the immediate resignation of dictator Isaias Afewerki, the
immediate release of all political prisoners, and the immediate implementation
of Eritrea’s constitution.”
Eritrea has no free press and is widely
considered to be one of the most repressive regimes on Earth.
Gabriel, an Eritrean asylum-seeker living in Israel, said the ill-fated coup was
a source of inspiration watched closely by Eritreans in Israel and across their
Diaspora, and was a turning point for anti-regime efforts.
“This act has
inspired Eritreans all over the world.
For years we’ve tried from outside
Eritrea to inspire the people there and now they are inspiring us. We think
there is for sure a chance that there will be a revolution there soon.”