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Ethiopia: Free Speech at Risk Amid Covid-19

Expand Ethiopian men read newspapers  at a cafe during a declared state of emergency in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on Oct. 10, 2016.  © AP Photo/Mulugeta Ayene (Nairobi) – The Ethiopian government has been using Covid-19 restrictions and a recently declared state of emergency as a pretext to restrict free speech. In the last month, the authorities have detained a lawyer, Elizabeth Kebede, and charged a journalist, Yayesew Shimelis, for comments on social media about the government’s response to the coronavirus. A new state of emergency declared on April 8, 2020 gives the government sweeping powers…

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