Tag Archives: Free Dawit Isaak

Dawit Isaak’s Freedom Cannot Simply Left to Politicians: Martin Schibbye

Martin Schibbye argues why the issue of Dawit Isaak’s freedom can not be left to politicians alone
The debate in Sweden has long been revolved around whether the “quiet diplomacy” works, or if Sweden should use harder words. Journalist Martin Schibbye, who recently visited Eritrea and soon travel there again, is of the opinion that the issue of Dawit Isaak’s freedom is too important to be left to politicians alone. (Photo: Magnus Bergström)

BY MARTIN SCHIBBYE *

Today, Dawit Isaak imprisoned for 16 years and the debate has raged since he was arrested on the best strategy to get him free.

I was in Eritrea last year with a special journalist’s visa to Asmara and was able to notice a greater openness towards journalists and got answers to the questions I asked.

A few years ago, questions about Dawit Isaak were rejected with aggression. Now I notice that he is alive and that he was treated well, but that the question whether a solution was an internal Eritrean affair. Continue reading Dawit Isaak’s Freedom Cannot Simply Left to Politicians: Martin Schibbye

Eritrea – Sweden: A Call to Action

The debate in Sweden has long revolved around whether the ”quiet diplomacy” works in foreign relations, or if Sweden needs to put its foot down. The journalist Martin Schibbye, who recently spent some time in Eritrea, believes that the issue of Dawit Isaak’s freedom is too important to just leave in the hands of politicians. Here he shares some tips on what you can do for Dawit Isaak right now.

Sweden’s relationship with Eritrea is too important to be left in the hands of certain opportunistic politicians. Focus should be on getting an Eritrean-Swedish citizen out of prison—not fighting or humiliating Eritrea.

By Martin Schibbye | for Blank Spot Project,

September 23 marks 15 years of Dawit Isaak’s imprisonment and the discussion about the best strategy to gain his freedom has raged ever since his arrest. (Eritrean-born Isaak became a Swedish citizen in 1992, but returned to his native country, where he started a newspaper in the late 1990s.) I was in Eritrea recently, lucky enough to be awarded the rarity of a journalism visa in order to write three long stories. I was there to record Eritrea’s journey from the euphoria after independence in 1991, until reality ripped the pen out of Dawit’s hands and many other journalists like him in 2001. Continue reading Eritrea – Sweden: A Call to Action