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Archdiocese of the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahdo Church Appeals to the UN

The Archdiocese of the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahdo Church in Diaspora sent a letter of appeal on May 24 to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon calling for “the immediate release of His Holiness Patriarch Antonios from prison” and that he be provided “with the necessary medical care.”

The news was first reported by, a US-based website.

Enthroned as Eritrea’s third patriarch after his election in 2004, Patriarch (“Abune”) Antonios, 86, who has been under house arrest since 2005, was dethroned by Eritrea’s ruling party in 2007 following a 2-year campaign that severely limited and encroached on his authority.

In what appears to be a rare show of unity, the letter carried twenty-nine signatures from all parts of the world.

In an unprecedented  interference in the internal affairs of the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahdo Church and in violation of church norms, the government imposed a new Patriarch, Abune Dioskoros, despite failing to receive the approval of Pope Shenouda of the Coptic Orthodox Church of Alexandria.

The letter sent by the priests from the Archdioceses of North America and Europe to the UN Secretary General and other entities also called for “the release of those imprisoned because of their religious faith.”

According to a recent report by Amnesty International, there are 10,000 prisoners in Eritrea.

The signatories appealed for help on behalf of the thousands of refugees “who are fleeing the scourge in their homeland are falling prey to the worst form of human trafficking, degradation and modern day slavery.”

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  • danial

    i.l wash mind untill u matured.

  • Asmara Eritrea

    To ask for the immediate release of one person when tens of thousand of Eritreans are imprisoned and tortured is in my view sick. We should ask for all Eritreans unlawfully in prison to be released irrelevant of their religion. They are human and deserve to have their human rights back.

    This confirms my view religion is utterly devisive and should never be mixed with politics

    Eritrea for ever, death to the dictator.

    • haile 1

      i concur with your comment that we should ask for all Eritreans unlawfully in prison to be released regardless of their religion.

      [Moderator: Please add #1 to your nick, we already have haile on the forum.]

      • haile

        Selam moxie

        I think your choice ‘haile’ is confusing for readers. I use to go by as Haile, then someone else started using it and I went to small letter ‘haile’ So, I suggest one of us use numeric suffix to make the distinction. May be you whant to be haile007 and I could be haile- Jack Spang (diamonds are forever)!

  • L.T

    It wrote by Prof Habtu Gebraeb hand and we know who is he:He want our church to be unity with Ethiopia as Haile Sillasie doing such evil action in 40s and 50s by help of Eritrean Rasput Meleake Selam Demo-Tros G.Mariam.
    Prof of History Habtu,If you like to go Ethiopia so just go yourself and leave the Eritrean case to Eritrea.Eritrea are not Tigria ansd so they are too!!
    I hate people like him when they try to play satanic fire on the name christanity.

    • listen little boy, first of all you have no idea as to what happened to keshi Abune Antonious. If you truly are a God fearing orthodox Christian you would be sympathetic to this issue. you are delusional, who is a typical arrogant PFDJ supporter. Who the hell is talking about the Eritrean and Ethiopian orthodox church mixing?? why would anybody want that when Eritrea and Ethiopia are to different countries?? you make no sense SHAME ON YOU, MAYBE YOU ARE ETHIOPIAN?? AND THIS IS YOUR WISH?? real Eritreans don’t think the way you do, TRAITOR!!!

    • abel

      Grow up.Boy