Annual Report 2021

The East and Horn of Africa sub-region continues to experience restrictions and narrowing of civic space. The right to freedom of opinion and expression continues to be violated by multiple governments in the region. Journalists face harassment, threats, detentions, arbitrary arrests, physical attacks, and even murder in some countries.

 The shrinking civic space creates an environment where journalists self-censor, which ultimately has an adverse impact on citizens’ access to information. The volatile situations in Ethiopia and Sudan coupled with the pre and post election violence in Uganda further increased human rights violations recorded in the respective countries and distorted livelihoods. 

These challenges continue to place HRDs in danger and hamper the work of civil society in the East and Horn sub-region.


Human Rights Defender of the month: Veronica Almedom

Veronica Almedom is a poster child of successful immigration. A duo Eritrean and Swiss citizen, she was born in Italy, and grew up in Switzerland where she permanently resides. Her parents are some of the earliest victims of Eritrea’s cycles of violence. When Eritrea’s war of independence peaked in the early 1980s, they escaped the country as unaccompanied minors, wandering through Sudan, Saudi Arabia, before making the hazard journey across the Mediterranean into Europe. There, they crossed first to Italy, and finally, to Switzerland, where they settled first as refugees, and later, as permanent residents.