Teklemariam Bekit

Source: BBC Tigrinya

The office of the UN’s refugee agency (UNHCR) in Egypt has confirmed that authorities there are still holding five Eritrean refugees who had been arrested during a demonstration on Sunday.

They had been protesting outside the UNHCR’s premises about delays in processing registrations for newly-arrived asylum seekers.

The UNHCR told BBC Tigrinya that it regretted the protest ended with arrests. More than 40 were picked up initially, but most were later released.

The five Eritreans who remain in custody have been requested to appear before the public prosecutor’s office.

UNHCR said it following the case closely and also working hard to minimise the delays in processing newly-arrived refugees.

Eritrean refugees held in Egypt after demonstration

Teklemariam Bekit

BBC Tigrinya

Egyptian police are still holding five Eritrean refugees arrested during a demonstration in the capital, Cairo, on Sunday.

The refugees were protesting at the offices of the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) about delays in processing registrations for newly-arrived asylum seekers when police arrested more than 40 of them.

Most were released later the same day, but five were kept in different holding cells, the BBC has learned.

One refugee following their cases told BBC Tigrinya that the police are trying to find out who organised the demonstration.

The London-based rights group the Eritrean Movement for Democracy and Human Rights said they fear the group could be deported back to Eritrea.

The UNHCR office in Egypt has not commented on the issue.


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