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Riksdag wants to halt Eritrean exile taxes

Riksdag wants to halt Eritrean exile taxes

Published: 24 Feb 2012 06:53 GMT+01:00
Updated: 24 Feb 2012 06:53 GMT+01:00

The majority of the Riksdag is against Eritrea collecting taxes from citizens resident in Sweden and MPs from the commitee on justice say that if current Swedish law is not enough to stop it, rules need to be tightened.

“This is not acceptable,” said Johan Linander of the Centre party, vice chairman of the committee on justice (Justitieutskottet).

“But there is an investigation into some that have been identified as collectors and until we have a guilty or not guilty verdict we can’t say if current legislation is too loose.”

The committee voted on three motions on Thursday, proposing to ban the taxation from Eritrea.

“We are wiling to take measures if current legislation can’t put a stop to this," Linander told TT.

Currently all exiled Eritreans are expected to pay two percent of their annual income to the country.

In November several Eritreans living in Sweden filed a report with the police saying the practice amounts to tax collection using extortion and the International Public Prosecution Office (Internationella Åklagarkammaren) in Stockholm is currently looking to open a preliminary investigation.

Critics of the regime in Eritrea have voiced the opinion that stopping the tax may be a way to put pressure on Eritrea to release the Swedish-Eritrean journalist Dawit Isaak, jailed for unknown crimes without a trial for the last ten years.

The taxes have been described in a UN report as the largest source of income for the dictatorship.

According to Eritrea, the tax is completely voluntary.

TT/The Local/rm (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

11:26 February 24, 2012 by Adriano
The intention of those who want to abolish the exile takes is noble, but will have negative effect on Eritreans who still have members of their family in Ertirea.

Whatever Sweden does from this end it will not solve the problem because the Eritrean government will still continue to hound and harass the relatives of any one who refuses to pay the said taxes. So please, think before you act. The consequences will be worse. Sweden is in no position to impose anything on the tyrannical Government of Eritrea.
11:37 February 24, 2012 by lexad
he tax is never Voluntary as our team proved it by going in to the embassy. We take this as a huge reward for our hard work. Hopefully we would have English and Swedish subtitles soon. I am sure many have seen part of it on the documentary fånge on SVT.

Sweden should not allow this illegal and infamous tax to be collected in its jurisdiction. Since we have clearly indicated that it is not voluntary, then it should be abolished completely, the dictator never responded for calls not to pressure Eritrean to pay it. We have many evidences on our hands. You can see one of them on you tube ''eritrean embassy expose''
13:50 February 24, 2012 by Haben Solomon
If the the swede collect tax from their citizens working abroad, what gives them the right to stop other countries collecting tax from their citizens. Eritreans of dual citizens, like any other citizens of other countries, have a duty to pay their country the tax required of them. If they wish to give up their Eritrea citizenship and no longer require any service from the Eritrean government, then they should not pay tax to the Eritrean government. However, if they wish to be a citizen of Eritrea and require service from the Eritrean government, they have to pay tax, because you can't have your cake and eat it too. It is common sense. I pay my tax willingly and I will fight against anyone who try to deny me my right of paying tax to my own country.

If Sweden is trying to bully Eritrea, then I say think twice.
07:30 February 26, 2012 by TKidane
kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk
21:39 February 27, 2012 by astra2thor6
But don't US citizens have to pay Federal taxes no matter in which country they live and work, or there has to be a double taxation agreement with the specific country in which the US citizen works?
09:16 February 28, 2012 by awash
@Haben Solomon watch this and then how your 2% income tax you pay is being helps your fellow "citizens" http://www.ethiotube.net/video/18226/Eritrea-torture-Murder-Worst-dictator-Isaias-AfewerkiI couldn't help but cry watching the whole generation of being lost because of sadistic ruler who claimed fought 30yrs of bloody war to liberate his "people". Those diaspora Eritrean supporters and apologists of the brutal regime, you still think worth sending 2% of your annual income to the regime to kill, torture, starve and enslave your compatriots back home?
12:40 December 21, 2012 by xusian
The thing is, Haben Solomon, Sweden *doesn't* require Swedish citizens living and working abroad to pay Swedish income taxes. Eritrea and the United States are the only two countries in the world which impose income taxes on the worldwide income of all citizens regardless of where those citizens might live. Other countries only tax income which originates within that country and/or is collected by someone who resides in that country. A Swedish citizen living in Eritrea with solely-Eritrean income would owe no taxes to Sweden.
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