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Imprisonment of Swedish journalists in Ethiopia sparks outrage in Europe

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Imprisonment of Swedish journalists in Ethiopia sparks outrage in Europe

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The detention of two Swedish journalists in Ethiopia has provoked anger by their own government and at by European Union, and both the EU and the Swedish Prime Minister have asked that they be released as soon as possible.

Martin Schibbye and Johan Persson were arrested in July, and have now been sentenced to eleven years in prison by an Ethiopian court.

The pair were found guilty of illegally entering to the country as well as helping and promoting the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) an outlawed rebel group.

Thomas Olsson, the lawyer representing the two men said that the chances of a successful appeal or a pardon, do not look good: “The first condition for a pardon is that the legal procedures have been finished, then you have to admit the crime and confess yourself guilty and you have to say that you are sorry for having troubled the state of Ethiopia.” The two men were arrested after crossing the border from Somalia with members of the ONLF. They have admitted entering the country illegally, but deny aiding the rebels.