Asmara University Students' Leader Escapes From Prison, Arrives In

 Asmara University Students' Leader Escapes From Prison, Arrives In




   Mekele, August 06, 2002 (WIC)- The President of the Asmara University Students' Union,

   Semere Kesete has arrived in Ethiopia safely, after escaping from his year long in captivity in

   a prison in Asmara.


   Semere, who was arrested and thrown behind bars by the Eritrean Security on August 1,

   2001 arrived in Ethiopia last Friday along with one of his prison guards after 5-days of

   gruelling journey on foot, from Asmara, the Tigrigna language Radio voice of  the TPLF



   Semere and his prison guard were carrying an AK-47 and two hand grenades on arrival.


   Semere, a Law graduate with distinction at the time of his arrest by the Eritrean Security,

   ended in prison, after a speech he made at the university graduation (also his own

   graduation) opposing what he said was an unfair payment deal of the government for

   University students to be engaged in the census programme and damage assessment survey

   of the damages caused by the Ethio-Eritrea war.


   He had said 800 Nakfas, without lodging, transport and miscellaneous expenses was

   unbearable to the students.


   Semere told the TPLF Radio, broadcasting from Mekele, that his choice of Ethiopia for a

   destination was prompted by "the country's impressive record in its treatment of Eritrean

   POWs, Eriteran army defectors, and Eritrean youth fleeing their country in protest of the

   regime's waves of military roundups for national service."


   The Issayas regime is known to have come under fire, in the last few years for its extra

   judicial imprisonment of dozens of its own party and government officials 13 journalists

   several senior citizens and the elderly as well as hundreds of students, all reportedly being

   held incommunicado.