News - March 31, 2005

PhD student arrested in Eritrea

A PhD student from the Erosion, Soil and Water Conservation group was imprisoned for nearly a month in his home country. The student, Semere Zaid from Eritrea, was apparently arrested because of his religious beliefs, as part of a government clampdown on charismatic movements. Zaid is a member of the Pentecostal Church. According to reports he has since been released on bail. Zaid is a professor at the agricultural faculty of the University of Asmara in Eritrea and is working at the ESW group on a thesis about sedimentation and small dams in Eritrea. He is currently in Eritrea and was not available for comment. / YdH