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Firebombing Eritrean Centers In Sweden

By Thomas Mountain

26 March, 2013

On Sunday night February 24 three Eritrean community centers in
Stockholm, Sweden were firebombed and burnt to the ground following a
vicious attack on the Swedish Eritrean population by a program
broadcast by Stockholm television station SVT.

The pogrom style “documentary” was a clear message to racist elements
in the Swedish community to attack the Eritrean community, one of the
largest, best organized and nationalist African communities in Sweden.

Racist fire bombings in their capital yet not one Swedish
parliamentarian, human rights group or religious organization has
spoken out publicly to condemn these violent attacks?

And what of the so publicly vociferous “defenders of Eritrean human
rights in Eritrea” such as Amnesty International and Human Rights
Watch? A shameful silence, continuing both organizations long history
of such when it comes to really defending Eritrean “human rights”
going back decades.

The television program that sparked the fire bombings was a one sided
rant that focussed on the support Eritreans in Sweden have for their
homeland Eritrea, in particular the voluntary 2% income tax all
Eritreans pay to their government, a tax that has been critical in
funding, amongst other programs, the human services that have made
Eritrea one of the few countries in Africa on its way to meeting the
UN Millennium Development goals.

Programs that have helped Eritrea reduce malaria mortality by 80%, the
biggest breakthrough in malaria mortality prevention in history.

Programs that have lead to a “remarkable” increase in longevity in
Eritrea, according to the World Bank, certainly no friend of Eritrea.

Programs that have brought real “human rights” to Eritreans in
villages across the country such as clean drinking water, medical
clinics and schools.

Sweden, the UK and the USA have all tried to block Eritreans
supporting their homeland, threatening Eritreans publicly for paying
their 2% while trying their best to prevent the collection of such by
the Eritrean Embassies in the three countries.

In the USA Eritreans from all over the country have to find a way to
pay their 2% in cash to the Eritrean Embassy in Washington D.C. due to
the Obama regimes suppression of all bank accounts and remittance
services by the Eritrean government in the USA.

Eritreans have never been ones to take such attacks laying down and
this past weekend saw thousands of Eritreans gather from across Sweden
to march through the bitterly cold streets of Stockholm to the Swedish
Parliament to protest these racist attacks. Yet still not a single
Swedish media outlet found the time to cover this demonstration.

One can only wonder what attacks lie in store for the Eritrean
communities in these so called “democratic, human rights loving
countries”? As Eritrea continues to reject western aid as it builds
its economy, the fastest growing in Africa, and improve the lives of
its people all the while fighting off continued military invasions by
the Ethiopian regime the question of the right of Eritreans living
abroad to support their country and its government will be a focus of
the western regimes frustration and one would be well served by
preparing for worse to come.

Arbitrary arrest and detention under the guise of fighting
“terrorism”? Mass deportations? Eritreans experienced these crimes
committed by the western supported Ethiopian regime in the late 1990’s
and the world should start preparing itself for the possibility of a
repeat of such in the so called “western democracies”.

The one thing that can be counted on is the continued silence of those
self anointed defenders of human rights such as Amnesty and Human
Rights Watch.

Thomas C. Mountain is the most widely distributed independent
journalist in Africa, living and reporting from Eritrea since 2006. He
can be reached at thomascmountain_at_yahoo_dot_com.




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