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Swedish journalists donate money to former inmates

Oct. 12 (ESAT News) The two Swedish journalists who were “pardoned” and released a few weeks ago from the notorious Kaliti prison after they were sentenced to 11 years imprisonment for terrorism offences have decided to donate 10,000 Swedish Kroner to their former inmates still in jail.

Martin Shibbye and Johan Person, who got the cash as an award from their supporters, said they were impressed with the communal eating habit of Ethiopians and want the money to be spent on beef and food to the inmates during a festive holiday.

Upon their release the duo condemned the Ethiopian government and said that they were pressurized to admit their guilt in exchange for their freedom from the hellish Kaliti jail, where they were incarcerated for over a year. They were charged with assisting the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF), an insurgent group which the regime labeled a terrorist organization.

Shibbye, 29, and Person, 31, went to the Ogaden to investigate and report gross human rights being committed by government troops in the Ogaden and the role of Lundin Petroleum, a Swedish oil company operating in the region.

After their release the Swedes have exposed the atrocities being committed against journalists and political dissidents. They told reporters that when they got released hand-cuffed journalists and dissidents still in jail pleaded with them to tell the world about the cruelty they have been facing at the hands of their tormentors.

The journalists vowed to continue exposing the gross human rights violations the Ethiopian government has been committing against innocent civilians at every opportunity.

The Ethiopian government rejected the allegations made by the journalists in a statement issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The government accused the Swedes of getting pardon under false pretense of wholehearted regret and penitence.