• Sweden's news in English

Swedish journalists faced Ethiopian court: ministry

Rebecca Martin · 14 Jul 2011, 12:02

Published: 14 Jul 2011 12:02 GMT+02:00

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

“We only received the information yesterday and at the moment we don’t know why it took so long for them to tell us or the embassy,” Linn Duvhammar at the Foreign Ministry’s information department told The Local.

The Swedish journalists Martin Schibbye and Johan Persson were arrested and injured in the closed border area Ogaden, on July 1st, when caught in a battle between Ethiopian government forces and the ONLF guerilla.

The journalists entered Ethiopia illegally together with the rebels, who are classed as terrorists by the regime. Following their arrest, the pair was taken to a detention centre in the city Jijiga, where they were permitted to meet briefly with Swedish ambassador Jens Odlander.

After many conflicting reports as to where they were being held, the pair was subsequently moved to Addis Ababa.

According to Duvhammar, it wasn’t until Wednesday that the ministry found out about the early remand hearing, following a meeting between Swedish embassy representatives and Ethiopian officials.

It was then revealed that a preliminary remand hearing had been conducted as early as July 6th in Jijiga, prior to the move of the two Swedish reporters to Addis Ababa.

The ministry had previously been told that no such hearing had taken place.

Story continues below…

According to the ministry, an additional remand hearing has now been scheduled for the 20th of July. The ministry are planning to have suitable legal representation for the two Swedes by then.

“They will have a lawyer at the next hearing. Staff at the embassy are working to get someone to represent them,” Duvhammar told The Local.

Rebecca Martin (rebecca.martin@thelocal.se)

Facebook Twitter Google+ reddit

Your comments about this article

18:16 July 14, 2011 by kynan
they are just poor Journalists and have nothing to with any crime,

Woyane (PTLF) Should free them soon.
18:55 July 14, 2011 by BBKING
Kynan you should be one of the ONLF members. did u say poor journalists? Every one should be considered equal in the eye of the law. Whether they appear to be poor or they really are will only be proven after their investigation.
19:48 July 14, 2011 by kynan
BBKING, do you believe there is law or just in the Hands of the Wayane administration in Ethiopia?
03:06 July 15, 2011 by h2m
It is unfortunate for the journalist to end up in the hands of the Woyane Regime.However, We should also have in mind that they have strong state that would make sure their safety and well being unlike the people of Ogaden who will still be subjected to gross human right abuses. Ethiopian government wants to score more grades in its dispute with Swedish but there is nothing to hope while the aid diverted to the military is not up for discussion as a leverage and subjected to human right records and governance of the world no 1 beggar sate
08:32 July 15, 2011 by dolphin, the
@kynan: what do you mean by PTLF?


It looks like you are out of touch. If the two journalists are found to be guilty in the court of law, I guess there will be little the Swedesh government can do about it. I am not sure if the allegation that the aid money is used for military purposes. But this has nothing to do with the case of the two journalists. I don't see any reason why the Ethiopian government tries to score a point over Sweden.

You may want to put your motions aside and try to see the whole scenario clearly. By the way, if you think ONLF is doing the right thing and the people in Ogaden region are being abused, why don't you go and join the group? It is very sad to see uninformed citizens are driven by silly propaganda spread by people enjoying the comfort of their living room in Europe.
08:54 July 16, 2011 by jamac
BBKING who you think these two men are Ogaden is not like we can kill them and raped them like we do with millions of poor Ogadens oh no.Wake up these are two Europeans you know the ones that feed us and keep us a life every year truly I mean without them will perish.Guess what man sooner or later the world will findout about the mass Graves in Ogaden the Hundred Thousands of Civilians that you and Your Dictator desparately trying to hide and them you all evil ppl will br brought to justice.
02:25 July 17, 2011 by Abdifatah
The Ethiopian regime must be condemned for there inhuman crimes against the people of the Ogaden. The injustice has been going on for far to long.

These brave journalist were simply trying to show the world what are people have been facing for the last 20 years. Enough is Enough Free OGADEN
Today's headlines
Dylan removes Nobel-mention from website
The American musician has more or less responded to the news with silence. Photo: Per Wahlberg

American singer-song writer Bob Dylan has removed any mention of him being named one of this year’s Nobel Prize laureates on his official website.

Refugee crisis
Asylum requests in Sweden down by 70 percent
Sweden's migration minister Morgan Johansson. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

Sweden received 70 percent fewer requests for asylum in the period between January and September 2016 than it did during the same time last year, the country’s justice and migration minister Morgan Johansson has revealed.

The unique story of Stockholm's floating libraries
The Stockholm archipelago book boat. Photo: Roger Hill.

Writer Roger Hill details his journeys on the boats that carry books over Stockholm's waterways and to its most remote places.

Refugee crisis
Second Stockholm asylum centre fire in a week
The new incident follows a similar fire in Fagersjö last week (pictured). Photo: Johan Nilsson/TT

Police suspect arson in the blaze, as well as a similar incident which occurred last Sunday.

More misery for Ericsson as losses pile up
Ericsson interim CEO Jan Frykhammar presenting its third quarter results. Photo: Claudio Bresciani/TT

The bad news just keeps coming from the Swedish telecoms giant.

Facebook 'sorry' for removing Swedish cancer video
A computer displaying Facebook's landing page. Photo: Christine Olsson/TT

The social media giant had censored a video explaining how women should check for suspicious lumps in their breasts.

Watch this amazing footage of Sweden’s landscapes
A still from the aerial footage of Sweden. Photo: Nate Summer-Cook

The spectacular drone footage captures both Sweden's south and the opposite extreme, thousands of kilometres north.

Sweden could be allowed to keep border controls: EU
Police ID checks at Hyllie station in southern Sweden. Photo: Stig-Åke Jönsson/TT

Sweden could be allowed to keep ID controls on its border with Denmark beyond the current end date of November, following discussions among EU leaders in Brussels last night.

Why women in Sweden will work for free by November
File photo of a woman working in a Swedish office. Photo: Anders Willund/TT

A new study into the gender pay gap suggests Sweden still has some work to do.

Look familiar? Meet your jawbone's ancestor
Thank God for evolution, eh?

There's something fishy about the human jawbone – it has its origins in the placodermi, a jowly species of fish that lived 400 million years ago, Swedish and Chinese researchers say.

Sponsored Article
This is Malmö: Football capital of Sweden
Fury at plans that 'threaten the IB's survival' in Sweden
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
Here's where it could snow in central Sweden this weekend
Analysis & Opinion
Are we just going to let half the country die?
Blog updates

6 October

10 useful hjälpverb (The Swedish Teacher) »

"Hej! I think the so-called “hjalpverb” (auxiliary verbs in English) are a good way to get…" READ »


8 July

Editor’s blog, July 8th (The Local Sweden) »

"Hej readers, It has, as always, been a bizarre, serious and hilarious week in Sweden. You…" READ »

Sponsored Article
7 reasons you should join Sweden's 'a-kassa'
Angry elk chases Swede up a lamp post
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
The Local Voices
'Alienation in Sweden feels better: I find myself a stranger among scores of aliens'
People-watching: October 20th
The Local Voices
A layover at Qatar airport brought this Swedish-Kenyan couple together - now they're heading for marriage
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Swede punches clown that scared his grandmother
Sponsored Article
Swedish for programmers: 'It changed my life'
Fans throw flares and enter pitch in Swedish football riot
Could Swedish blood test solve 'Making a Murderer'?
Sponsored Article
Top 7 tips to help you learn Swedish
Property of the week: Linnéstaden, Gothenburg
Sponsored Article
How to vote absentee from abroad in the US elections
Swedish school to build gender neutral changing room
People-watching: October 14th-16th
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
Man in Sweden assaulted by clowns with broken bottle
Sponsored Article
‘Extremism can't be defeated on the battlefield alone’
Nobel Prize 2016: Literature
Sponsored Article
Stockholm: creating solutions to global challenges
Watch the man who discovered Bob Dylan react to his Nobel Prize win
Sponsored Article
Why you should 'grab a chair' on Stockholm's tech scene
Record numbers emigrating from Sweden
Sponsored Article
'There was no future for me in Turkey'
People-watching: October 12th
Sponsored Article
Where is the Swedish music industry heading?
The Local Voices
'Swedish startups should embrace newcomers' talents - there's nothing to fear'
Sponsored Article
Last chance to vote absentee in the US elections
How far right are the Sweden Democrats?
Property of the week: Triangeln, Malmö
Sweden unveils Europe's first elk hut
People-watching: October 7th-9th
The Local Voices
Syria's White Helmets: The Nobel Peace Prize would have meant a lot, but pulling a child from rubble is the greatest reward
Missing rune stone turns up in Sweden
Nobel Prize 2016: Chemistry
jobs available