The most significant human rights problems included harassment and intimidation of opposition members and supporters and journalists; alleged torture, beating, abuse, and mistreatment of detainees by security forces; and politically motivated trials.
Other human rights problems included alleged arbitrary killings; harsh and at times life-threatening prison conditions; arbitrary arrest and detention; detention without charge and lengthy pretrial detention; a weak, overburdened judiciary subject to political influence; infringement on citizens’ privacy rights, including illegal searches; alleged abuses in the implementation of the government’s “villagization” program; restrictions on freedom of expression, including continued restrictions on print media and the internet, assembly, association, and movement; restrictions on academic freedom; interference in religious affairs; restrictions on activities of civil society and NGOs; limited ability of citizens to change their government; police, administrative, and judicial corruption; violence and societal discrimination against women and abuse of children; female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C); trafficking in persons; societal discrimination against persons with disabilities; clashes between ethnic minorities; discrimination against persons based on their sexual orientation and against persons with HIV/AIDS; and limits on worker rights, forced labor, and child labor, including forced child labor
On Internet Freedom, the Ethiopian government also temporarily blocked news sites such as al-Jazeera and the BBC. Several news blogs and websites were not accessible.
These included Addis Neger, Nazret, Ethiopian Review, CyberEthiopia, Quatero Amharic Magazine, Tensae Ethiopia, and the Ethiopian Media Forum.