Ethiopian Human Rights Council (EHRCO)
http://www.ehrco.org
Mission/Mandate:
“The Ethiopian Human Rights Council (EHRCO) is an independent, non-governmental, non-profit making, non-partisan and non-political organization established on October 10, 1991. […] EHRCO is the only human rights organization in Ethiopia, which monitors human rights violations. Since its establishment it has issued reports concerning the democratic process, the rule of law and the human rights situation in Ethiopia.” (EHRCO Website, http://www.ehrco.org/about.htm, accessed on 4 November 2008)
“EHRCO has three fundamental and inseparable objectives:
·         to strive for the establishment of a democratic system;
·         to promote the rule of law and due process;
·         to encourage and monitor the respect for human rights in Ethiopia.” (EHRCO Website, http://www.ehrco.org/about.htm, accessed on 4 November 2008)
EHRCO has 12 branch offices in Ethiopia and about 60 staff members (cp. EHRCO: Ethiopia’s draft CSO bill: A serious threat to human rights activism, September 2008, http://www.wmd.org/documents/EHRCO092008.pdf, accessed on 4 November 2008)
Target group:
Civil society, ombudsman, Ethiopian Human Rights Commission, parliament and other government organs, development partners, media
Objective:
To realize its three fundamental objectives of establishing a democratic system, promoting the rule of law and encouraging the respect for human rights, EHRCO performs the following activities. It
·         “encourages Ethiopia's acceptance of all international conventions, covenants, charters and declarations that are concerned with human rights;
·         organizes seminars, workshops, panel discussions and lectures;
·         publishes and disseminates periodicals, newsletters and books so as to promote the basic principles of democracy, human rights and the rule of law;
·         monitors and exposes violations of human rights committed by groups or government institutions;
·         campaigns for free and fair elections at all levels;
·         co-ordinates its activities with national and international human rights organizations.” (EHRCO Website, http://www.ehrco.org/about.htm, accessed on 4 November 2008)
Funding:
EHRCO “runs its activities with a budget close to four hundred thousand USD annually. A very negligible amount of this budget (less than two thousand USD) is raised locally from membership fees.” (EHRCO: Ethiopia’s draft CSO bill: A serious threat to human rights activism, September 2008, http://www.wmd.org/documents/EHRCO092008.pdf, accessed on 4 November 2008)
The majority of funds stems from foreign donors, among them international NGOs like the National Endowment for Democracy (NED) and Oxfam Novib and the governments of Norway, Sweden, Finland and other European countries. (cp. Sourcewatch, http://sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Ethiopian_Human_Rights_Council; Oxfam Novib, Novib Characterizations 2004 – Ethiopia, http://www.novib.nl/projects/content/Ethiopia.pdf; Netherlands Institute of International Relations ‘Clingendael’ – Democratic Transition in Post-Conflict Societies Project: Democracy Assistance to Post-Conflict Ethiopia. Building Local Institutions?, Working Paper 27, p. 49 (published at Addis Voice), July 2004, http://www.addisvoice.com/resources/democracy-Rahmato.pdf, all accessed on 4 November 2008)
Scope of reporting:
Geographic focus: Ethiopia
Thematic focus: Democratic process, rule of law and human rights situation in Ethiopia; special reports on various related topics (detention conditions, terrorism, racism, religious extremism, ethnic conflicts, violence by law enforcement agencies, etc.)
Reporting methodology:
The human rights reports published by EHRCO are based on complaints and testimonies received from victims and witnesses of human rights violations, as well as evidence gathered through onsite investigation by EHRCO. EHRCO lists the circumstances and victims of human rights abuses, including the name of the victim, and place and type of the abuse. EHRCO publishes regular and special reports. It also issues press releases. EHRCO has established about a dozen branch offices outside of Addis Ababa. (cp. EHRCO Website, http://www.ehrco.org/reports.htm; Netherlands Institute of International Relations ‘Clingendael’ – Democratic Transition in Post-Conflict Societies Project: Democracy Assistance to Post-Conflict Ethiopia. Building Local Institutions?, Working Paper 27, p. 49 (published at Addis Voice), July 2004, http://www.addisvoice.com/resources/democracy-Rahmato.pdf, all accessed on 4 November 2008)
Publication cycle:
Annually, two to six regular reports and five to ten special reports are published. Press releases are published infrequently (as of November 2008, last press release had been published in July 2007).
Languages:
English, some publications also available in Amharic
Navigation of website:
Home: Recent updates including latest regular and special reports; Reports (accessible via top menu): Regular Reports, Special Reports, Press Release, Annual Reports (no Annual Report available as of November 2008).
Additional references:
EHRCO - Ethiopian Human Rights Council: Ethiopia’s draft CSO bill: A serious threat to human rights activism, September 2008 (published by the World Movement for Democracy)
http://www.wmd.org/documents/EHRCO092008.pdf (accessed on 4 November 2008)
EHRCO - Ethiopian Human Rights Council: Everyone Should Stand Guard for the Protection of Human Rights!, 10 December 2006
http://www.ehrco.org/reports/press1.pdf (accessed on 4 November 2008)
Netherlands Institute of International Relations ‘Clingendael’ – Democratic Transition in Post-Conflict Societies Project: Democracy Assistance to Post-Conflict Ethiopia. Building Local Institutions?, Working Paper 27 (published at Addis Voice), July 2004
http://www.addisvoice.com/resources/democracy-Rahmato.pdf (accessed on 4 November 2008)
Sourcewatch: Ethiopian Human Rights Council
http://sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Ethiopian_Human_Rights_Council (accessed on 4 November 2008)
Homepage:
http://www.ehrco.org/
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