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Escaping Eritrea: ‘If I die at sea, it’s not a problem – at least I won’t be tortured’

Like many of her fellow Eritrean refugees, Sofia, who managed to escape northwards to Cairo, has a very simple reason for fleeing her homeland. “In Eritrea you’re even afraid to talk to your family,” she says. “The person next to me [in a cafe] could be a spy, and they are looking at what you are doing. People disappear every day.”

One day, a friend made the innocent mistake of striking up a conversation with a man in a cafe who later turned out to be from the Libyan embassy. “They were just chatting. And they said she was a spy passing information to him. We don’t know what happened to her. She is in jail till now. One day they told us she was in hospital with high blood pressure but we were so afraid that we didn’t go because we feared they might arrest us too.”

Source: www.theguardian.com

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