Europe

Thousands of Eritreans protest UN report

Thousands have gathered outside the UN to protest a report alleging human rights abuse in Eritrea. (AAP)

Thousands of Eritreans have protested outside the UN's office in Geneva as a debate about alleged human rights abuses in Eritrea took place.

Several thousand Eritreans have gathered at the United Nations in Geneva to protest a UN report saying crimes against humanity have been committed in the authoritarian East African state.

Swiss police estimated up to 4000 protesters who came from several European countries took part in Tuesday's protest, while the Eritrean pro-government organisers talked of 10,000 participants.

The demonstration was staged outside the UN seat, where the UN Human Rights Council was debating the report, which calls for Eritrean leaders to be prosecuted by the International Criminal Court in The Hague.

UN human rights investigators said in their report that they had collected evidence of widespread state-sponsored enslavement, imprisonment, enforced disappearances, torture, rape and murder since 1991.

Protesters in Geneva denounced the findings as partial and full of lies, Swiss news agency sda reported.

The UN investigators said that Eritrean officials had coerced Eritrean guest workers in some countries to write letters supporting the regime to the UN, to influence the report.

Last year, 47,000 Eritreans applied for asylum in Europe.

Stay up to date with SBS NEWS

  • App
  • Subscribe
  • Follow
  • Listen
  • Watch