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Question for Foreign and Commonwealth Office

UIN HL4645, tabled on 3 February 2015

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what is their assessment of the assurances given by the government of Eritrea to the Home Office and Foreign and Commonwealth Office officials who visited Eritrea in December 2014 that military service there will be limited to 18 months; and whether they will undertake analysis of the matter and report on the outcome.

Answered on

12 February 2015

The Eritrean government decree (dated 23 October 1995) on national service provides for it to be eighteen months in duration. However, since the 1998-2002 war with Ethiopia, national service has been extended for many citizens over an unspecified period. We have regularly raised the importance of limiting national service with the Eritrean government, most recently in December 2014. Eritrean officials provided assurances that national service will now be strictly limited to 18 months. We welcome this decision but will continue to press the Eritrean government to live up to this commitment.

Answered by

Foreign and Commonwealth Office