The two Swedish journalists Martin Schibbye and Johan Persson who were convicted in Ethiopia last week for supporting terrorism got their punishment decided today. They are convicted to eleven years in prison.
The judge Shemsu Sirgaga ruled that Swedish journalists Johan Persson and Martin Schibbye should serve "rigorous imprisonment," and said the verdict "should satisfy the goal of peace and security," reports CPJ (Committee to Protect Journalists).
The Cabinet Secretary at the Swedish foreign ministry Frank Belfrage states that Schibbye and Persson should be released as soon as possible.
"We continue our efforts on all levels and in different tracks in order to contribute to their release", says Belfrage according to public broadcaster SVT.
Belfrage also stated that there are several contacts with the U.S.A. and the EU about the issue.
The two Swedish journalists can now either appeal the sentence or pledge for pardon. According to SVT the Ethiopian defence attorney of the Swedes has said that his clients consider appealing the court rule and that they have not discussed a pledge for pardon.
According to AFP and Reuters the two journalists revealed no emotions when the sentenced was delivered. No family members were present in the court.