Foundation for Human Rights in Eritrea sues EU for funding road construction despite alleged use of forced labour in such projects

Author: Nikolaj Nielsen, EU Observer, Published on: 18 May 2020

"EU sued for funding 'forced labour' Eritrea highway"

The European Union is being sued for financing road work projects in Eritrea, a country where forced labour is used, amid calls by Green MEPs to suspend the funding. Some €80m of EU trust funds have been channeled into equipment and materials to renovate a highway for a regime that forces people to work against their will in conditions described as tantamount to slavery.

The workers are part of Eritrea's mandatory national service programme, which rounds up young people for the totalitarian dictatorship under rebel-leader-turned-president, Isaias Afwerki. On Wednesday (13 May), the Dutch-based Foundation for Human Rights in Eritrea sent the European Commission a detailed 33-page writ of summons, in a case that will now be heard at the district court in Amsterdam.

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