The trial of the Zone9 bloggers and journalist allies adjourned for 4th of November, 2014 for 10th time.
The trial is re-adjourned for 4th of November 2014 for the 10th times in a row. In an opening defense statement the bloggers and the journalist have argued that the charges presented them were not procedural and have serious breaches of their constitutional rights and they have asked the judge to dismiss the case and release them but the judge adjourned the case for 4th of November to decide on the legality of their defense statement.
In a written opening defense statement, which its English transcript available on this blog; the defendants claimed the charges signifies serious defects of reasoning, and have incurred incorrect application of the procedural provisions as stipulated in the Ethiopian law of criminal procedure of article 112. In response the prosecutors rejected the defense statements.
The trial was not started on time since the judge arrived to the court room late.
Violation of the bloggers right in Kality prison
The two female prisoners namely Edom Kassaye and Mahlet Fantahun complained to the court that their rights have been violated in Kality prison. The bloggers complained that they are labeled as ‘terrorist’ inside the prison. They protested that with the exception of their few family members they are not allowed to be visited by their loved ones. They also complained that their family members who are permitted to visit them have to pass through brutal treatment at the gates of Kality prison. The judge ordered the head of the Kality prison to give an explanation to the bloggers’ grievances. Despite the individual in question was seen inside the court compound she/he was reported as ‘not in attendance’ in the court; hence the judge rescheduled to hear the case on 21st of October, 2014 up on the request by Edom Kassaye.
Family & Friends allowed attending the trial
Since the court room was at full capacity with loved ones of the bloggers some friends and family members of the bloggers and journalists were forced to wait outside the court room.