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Dawit Isaak ‘may be dead’

Swedish-Eritrean journalist Dawit Isaak, who has been imprisoned in Eritrea since 2001, has been moved from prison and may be dead, according to Swedish journalist Lars Adaktusson. Speaking on his radio programme Radio 1, Adaktusson cited

Swedish-Eritrean journalist Dawit Isaak, who has been imprisoned in Eritrea since 2001, has been moved from prison and may be dead, according to Swedish journalist Lars Adaktusson.

Speaking on his radio programme Radio 1, Adaktusson cited credible sources from Eritrea’s opposition movement as indicating that Isaak is no longer in the Eira Eiro prison because he is dead.

However, the information hasn’t been officially confirmed.

“We have no information to confirm either that he has been moved or that he is dead,” Anna Backlund at the Swedish foreign ministry’s informaion department told The Local.

The foreign ministry will now make a thorough investigation whether there is any information from within the ministry organisation indicating that there is any basis to the rumours about Isaak’s death.

Mehari Abraham, an Eritrean-exile commentator and journalist at TV-Zete in Stockholm is one who believes that Isaak is no longer alive.

“It’s very credible information but it’s extremely hard to get it confirmed,” he told the TT news agency.

While the information hasn’t been officially confirmed, the sources claiming that Isaak is no long in the prison have been right about ten previous deaths.

However, Leif Öbrink, chair of the Free Dawit Isaak campaign, was highly critical of the spreading of the information about Isaak’s supposed death, calling it “speculation”.

“This has been circulating for several weeks, this information. No one believes it. I think it’s totally wrong to go out with it,” he told TT, questioning the motives of Adaktusson and Abraham.

“What does he want? To discredit the regime? One has to bear such things in mind,” Öbrink said of Abraham.

“This is sensationalism from Adaktusson’s side.”

Isaak’s daughter Bethlehem also cast doubt on reports that her father was dead.

“We don’t believe this information,” she told the Expressen newspaper.

Arhe Hamednace, a Social Democrat MP of Eritrean decent, is concerned the reports may be accurate.

He explained on the radio programme that he received reports about Isaak about two months ago.

“There were some people who called me. One high-placed person that works in an organistation with international contacts called me and said that ‘we have information, we’ve heard that Dawit is no longer alive’,” said Hamednaca.

He later contacted sources in his own network in Eritrea but failed to get the information confirmed.

“But we know how this regime acts. No one who is a high-ranking politician or government critic has come out alove from this prison,” he said on Adaktusson’s programme.

Thomas Mattsson, editor of the Expressen newspaper, which has been at the centre of the movement to draw attention to Isaak’s case and win his freedom, said the report that the imprisoned journalist may be dead was “terrible news”.

“Terrible if it’s true. Nearly as terrible if it’s not true – Dawit Isaak has a wife and three children and it’s with them that our thoughts go now. I really hope this is a misunderstanding, a mistake.”

Source: The Local

Review overview
  • Abdi October 29, 2011

    Leave this family alone enough using him,and find other story to support you agenda.

    • Baraee October 29, 2011


      It is not a question of Dawit and his family any more…Dawit and his pen are Eritrean, Dawit adn his voice is Eritrean….he is our warrior…so we will not leave this alone for you to hav sleep….Let me ask you what happened to Hade Libi Hade Hizbi….Is Dawit’ not from Hade Hizbi…should you not be ashame to stand between justice and Dawit’s daughter….do you have a daugher or a sone…..I beg you every time you see them asleep and know when the wake up the see “Abdi” their dad think of Dawit, think of Genisu Strategist Hero Petros Solomon…think of the man that liberated you…Asab final battle to kick the dergue -Hero Bitweded….stop lying and lying and lying and lying to yourself….Gadaffi tried that and Truth caught up with him in the dangeon of Sirte his birth place….ironically….like a rat.
      Ya Abdi , Ya Abdi….time is up….I have never seen a momomentum that reverses…it is a law of science and mathematical. …Even when it reverses it does not stop….it get’s worse…like it did in Libya …it appeared to reverse and gave the semblance that Gadaffi is invincible…he got worse PRIZE than his neighbor presidents to the east and west.

      God bless your heart.

      • Abdi October 31, 2011

        i can understand the feelings you are in,but also would like to remind you that we have other prisoners journalists,2 in your boss’s jails and one in Sudan i hope you give them their equal share of sympathy, if there is nothing hidden behind your “hade hzbi hade libi” slogan and feelings. just remember he has a family whom you are torturing every day in away or another.STOP USING HIM.

  • Dawit (Epherem) & Amanuel , Birmingham, UK October 29, 2011

    Sweden should put more pressure on the EU to investigate the matter as the regime in Eritrea will not easily work for peace and human right. Therefore, the response needs firm stand and tight sanction on the regime not only because the regime put in prison journalists but also for the ordinary Eritreans are dying in camps, prisons, desert, and meditranian ocean too.

    Sweden could play a positive role by supporting the Eritrean people struggle for democracy and rule of Law. Sweden should not allow the 2% collection in its soil from the Eritreans reside there. This is the first step and denie visa for Eritrean officials. Tight more control on PFDJ members. If sweden couldn’t at least imply this then what is the point day and night discussion on its media.

    I wish Dawit to be healthy and alive and join his family. I wish all Eritreans in prison in containers be free soon rather than late with tragidies.

  • haben October 29, 2011

    Dawits family wife and children you have to sue the tv zette and radio sweden the one he detrubite the news a bout none true Dawits death and isaayas isaak , and his foster family speacialy assenna web amanuel to get your repetation about your father about family repect. because this is game for human repetation those teifs for thier own interste.

    • guest October 29, 2011


      I recommend you to go to English class. Even grade 5 from Eritrea write far better than you. If u know how to write tigrigna , that would be fine, because no one understand what you are writing.

      Write the message and ask some one to read and tell you what it means, you will find very funny answer, but i applaud your attempt.

      • Belay October 31, 2011

        I would like to add some comment on gusts’ reply to Haben. I am also recommending Haben to convey his message in any other language he is good at. I don’t understand what he wanted to say. Perhaps he is giving some idea to the family of Issak to sue Assenna and other media outlets for the news they broadcast abouth the alleged death of Dawit. If I am right, I would be happy to say we are living in the information age not in the stone age, so Haben! please catch up with the ongoing fast information age before it is too late otherwise the information train will overrun you.


  • haben October 30, 2011

    guest, thanks for your none sense advise, are you here to adviser about lieing propoganda, death to people it never heard, you guys you are here to obay to liking meles ass. be there for youe agame master.

  • haben October 30, 2011

    Dawits, family Wife and Children take un urgent action. first of all you have the right to take off your dady picture from asena garbage web, and please i urged you to take to the international court for folse death acuzation asena,tv zete mehari abraham and radio Adakusson the stupid isayas issaak and his foster father. mo more makimg money behind Dawits back. thanks

  • HGDF October 31, 2011

    Liers and their stupid followers. How could you say he is dead and at the same time “We have no information to confirm either that he has been moved or that he is dead,”?

  • haben October 31, 2011

    assenna web pink panters, why you short cut dawites death. if it was true were real information. you guys you must close your web because no body trust you net time were ever any time do not mantion eritrean nations names.

  • Isaias ywdek November 1, 2011

    God will domolish the evil ruler Isaias. Isaias is devil in human flesh. He will be executed soon.