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POLITICIAN

Swede ‘beaten in Ogaden’ housed at embassy

A Swedish-Ethiopian politician from Gothenburg, assaulted on a trip to Ogaden, has been safely housed at the Swedish embassy in Addis Ababa were immediate arrangements are being made for him and his family return home.

Dayib Mohamud, a part-time Green Party politician from Gothenburg, was detained and beaten in front of his children, the man’s brother told Swedish media on Monday. Ogaden is a restive region where two Swedish journalists were arrested two years ago on suspicion of abetting terrorists.

Dayib Mohamud landed in the Ethiopian capital on Tuesday along with one of his children.

“They’re now at the Swedish embassy to discuss arrangements for a trip home to Sweden,” his brother Qualinle Dayib told news agency TT.

Dayib Mohamud has lived in Sweden for almost three decades and is a Swedish citizen. He had returned with his nine children, all born in Sweden, to Ethiopia to visit their native Ogaden region, according to the brother.

The man told his brother on the phone that he had been assaulted and thrown from a moving vehicle by eight soldiers, before being taken to a house where the beating continued.

“He is very badly hurt and is having problems moving. There are no hospitals in the area,” the brother added.

The rest of the family, eight children and the mother, were expected to arrive in Addis Ababa by bus on Tuesday evening and plans are being made for the entire family to return home to Sweden as soon as possible.

The Ogaden region between Ethiopia and Somalia has been contested for more than a century. Since 1984, the Ogaden National Liberation Front has taken up armed combat with security forces. The Swedish Foreign Ministry (Utrikesdepartementet – UD) advises Swedish citizens to stay clear of the region.

The Local/cd

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POLITICIAN

German MEP quits leftist bloc after far-right past unmasked

A German MEP has resigned from the European Parliament's hard left group, it said Tuesday, after he was unmasked as a former member of the far right ultra-nationalist NPD party.

German MEP quits leftist bloc after far-right past unmasked
NPD members protesting outside of an asylum home in Eisenh├╝ttenstadt in 2014. Photo: DPA

Martin Buschmann, a 49-year-old from Hamburg, was elected to the Strasbourg assembly in May last year on as a member of the tiny Animal Protection Party (Die Tierschutzpartei).

Once in parliament, he joined the European United Left – Nordic Green Left (GUE/NGL), the main far left voting bloc.

READ ALSO: The winners and losers: Six things to know about the EU elections in Germany

Recently, however, reports surfaced of his earlier association with the notorious NPD, forcing him to quit the leftists and issue a long apology about his past ties.

In a Facebook post, Buschmann confirmed the report that he was in the NPD “about 25 years ago”, but said he had joined because he “had fallen in love with a woman who was there.”

Although he insisted he had not been an enthusiastic activist, he said it was “difficult to resist the group dynamics” and said he had put his name forward for party jobs.

He eventually resigned and moved into left-wing causes, and says that now, “Nothing disgusts me more than racism, anti-Semitism, fascism or discrimination of any kind.”

He apologized for not having been transparent about his past, but said he wanted to remain in the parliament and to work on its agriculture committee to promote animal rights.

In a statement, the GUE/NGL said the European party was “disappointed in the breach of trust that has been committed” and had accepted Buschmann's resignation.

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