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Does Ethiopia Deserve to Continue Hosting the African Union (AU)?

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Since its inception in 1963, the organization of the African Unity (OAU) and its successor the African Union (AU) has been hosted by Ethiopia. Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia was its first chairman. Among the major pillars of the African Union’s mission is safeguarding the sovereignty and territorial integrity of member states. Affirming commitments to its objectives, in its Cairo Declaration of Article 2 of resolution 16(1), the OAU pledged the independent African states to respect their inherited colonial borders. Through the Cairo declaration, the OAU asserted that colonial borders be a sacrosanct boundary of African countries. In its effort to promote peace and security throughout the continent, the African Union established the Peace and Security Council in December 2003. The specific goal of the Peace and Security Council (PSC) is “prevention, management, and resolution of conflicts”. In line with the above agreements and objectives of the African Union, we will see if Ethiopia deserves to continue hosting the African Union.

ETHIOPIA IS A THREAT TO REGIONAL PEACE.

Somalia.

Contrary to the objectives of the African Union, Ethiopia has been a source of instability in the Horn of Africa region. Following the 1977–1978 border war with Somalia, Ethiopia worked hard to make Somalia a failed state for three decades. In 2006 when Somalis started to organize themselves under the Union of Islamic Courts and begin to bring normalcy to Somalia Ethiopia invaded Somalia. The invasion of Somalia by Ethiopia created Al-Shabaab. In the pretext of fighting Al-Shabaab Ethiopia is still in Somalia. According to the United Nations monitoring group report, Ethiopia coupled with Yemen are the major source of Arms and logistics to Al-Shabaab. Such evidence indicates Ethiopia wants Somalia to remain a failed state.

Eritrea.

After being colonized by Italy for 50 years (1889-1941) and ten years (1941-1951) under the British Interim Administration, the United Nations forced Eritrea to be federated with Ethiopia in 1952. In 1962, Ethiopia’s emperor Haile Selassie unilaterally dissolved the Federation and annexed Eritrea, triggering a 30-year armed struggle in Eritrea. Eritrea which has a distinct flag, parliament, and national boundaries based on the 1900, 1902, and 1908 colonial agreements between Ethiopia and Italy was turned into an administrative region of Ethiopia. Although the annexation of Eritrea happened two years before the 1964 Cairo declaration, it was a clear indication that Ethiopia had not been committed to peace and security in Africa. After 30 years of war and destruction, the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front (EPLF) completely Liberated Eritrea in 1991. Through the UN and the AU monitored referendum Eritrea became an independent country on May 24, 1993. Again, in violation of the 1964 Cairo declaration, in 1998 Ethiopia claimed the Badme region of Eritrea and conducted a two-year devastating war against Eritrea. In 2002 the Eritrea and Ethiopia boundary commission based on the colonial agreements of 1900, 1902, and 1908 declared Badme was an Eritrean territory. Ethiopia rejected the ruling and occupied Badme and other Eritrean territories for twenty years. As a continuation of the Ethiopian leader’s act of undermining colonial boundaries recently the current Prime Minister of Ethiopia Dr. Abiy Ahmed attempted to replace the 1964 Cairo declaration with Ethnic based boundaries. He argued that because the Afar Ethnic group live in both Eritrea and Ethiopia, the Ethiopian Afars should have a say on the Eritrean Red Sea. He continued to say because Somalis live in both Ethiopia and Somalia the Ethiopian Somalis should have a say on the Indian ocean. In violation of the 1964 OAU declaration, he claimed to have a historical right to own a port and corridor to the sea. These statements clearly indicate that Ethiopia is not serious about the 1964 Cairo declaration and the 1982 UN convention or Law of the Sea.

Sudan.

Ethiopia’s continuous border conflict with Sudan in the Alfashaga region also indicates Ethiopia’s lack of commitment to settle international border problems in line with the 1964 Cairo Declaration. When the Tigray war started Sudan reclaimed what it called land that was occupied by Ethiopia. The border problem between Sudan and Ethiopia is a dormant conflict that could erupt at any time.

ETHIOPIA HAS A LONG HISTORY OF VIOLENT REGIME CHANGES AND PERSISTENT CONFLICTS.

Focusing on the history of modern Ethiopia, Emperor Haile Selassie, the first OAU chairman, was overthrown in a violent military coup by a Marxist–Leninist junta, the Derg. On the morning of 23 November 1974, the Derg executed 54 Haile Selassie’s Ministers, and six were killed in a shootout with the executioners. Haile Selassie was assassinated on 27 August 1975 by the then Ethiopian Military Junta. The catastrophic famine of 1983–1985 was what brought the Derg junta government the most international attention. Mengistu’s government is estimated to be responsible for the deaths of 500,000 to 2,000,000 Ethiopians, mostly during the 1983–1985 famine in Ethiopia and close to 750, 000 people due to the red terror execution of civilians. Consistent with what the Derg military Junta did to Haile Selassie, after waging a war for 17 years, the Tigray Liberation Front (TPLF) toppled the Derg Marxist Leninist Junta in 1991. Although the TPLF is credited with what resembles to an economic change in Ethiopia, the ethnic-based federalism system it established continues to be a time bomb in Ethiopia. Ethnic conflicts in Ethiopia are believed to have killed close to two million and displaced five million Ethiopians. The Oromo and Amhara youth uprising toppled the Tigray liberation front-led government in 1998 and brought the current Prime Minister, Dr. Abiy Ahmed, to power. Although in the beginning, the transition of power seemed peaceful it was followed by a deadly conflict between the Ethiopian Federal Government and the TPLF. The conflict resulted in the death of close to two million people in Tigray, Amhara, and Afar and the widespread destruction of property and infrastructure. Regardless of the ongoing wars in Amhara and Oromo, recently the Prime Minister of Ethiopia Dr. Abiy Ahmed made a dangerous speech to his parliament that could destabilize the whole Horn of Africa region. Ethiopian leaders continue to have a strong appetite for war, and they do not seem to survive without it.

CONCLUSION.

The saddest part of the story is a leader, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, whom Ethiopians and people of the neighboring countries hoped would change the trajectory of war and conflicts in Ethiopia and received a noble prize has become the prime instigator of war in Ethiopia. On top of the ongoing wars in Amhara and Oromo and the dormant deadly conflict in Tigray currently, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed is eying an invasion of neighboring countries, especially Eritrea. Therefore, Ethiopia’s continuous disregard for the 1964 Cairo declaration on colonial boundaries and its persistent internal conflicts do not reflect the values of the African Union. In fact, the Ethiopian utter disregard for the African Union’s declarations and agreements is making the African Union weaker and partial. The recent threat of the Prime Minister on neighboring countries should be a warning bell to the African Union. If Ethiopia continues to undermine the African Union’s declarations and agreements, it may be disqualifying itself from continuing to be the host of the African Union. It is time for the AU and its member states to send a strong warning to Ethiopia.

Awet N’Hafash and Eternal Glory to our Martyrs.

 

The Forgotten War of Sudan: The Humanitarian Crisis Costing the Lives of Millions

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According to the United Nations, the conflict in the past 14 months has killed around 14,000 people and wounded 33,000. However, humanitarian and rights groups claim that the numbers could be much higher.

The ongoing war in Sudan is not only destroying cities but also causing unprecedented human suffering. One cannot overlook the horrific scenes in Gaza and the destruction committed by the Israeli military; however, it is imperative not to lose sight of the other devastating war ravaging an entire country.

Many are aware of the war crimes committed by the Bashir regime in Darfur. Sadly, a similar incident is now unfolding in the same region of Sudan, possibly even graver than the one in 2005. In addition to the destruction of the capital, Khartoum, the war has spread to the east, west, and south of the country. Wali-Madani, Sudan’s second-largest city, is now under the control of the Rapid Support Force (RSF). Thousands of people fear being trapped in the city of Al-Fasher, the provisional capital of North Darfur, where fierce fighting has been ongoing for weeks. According to The Sudan Conflict Monitor, a group of experts and rights activists, the control of Singa, the provincial capital of Sennar, could have devastating humanitarian consequences. This includes potential disruption of large-scale agricultural programs in the nearby provinces of Blue Nile, White Nile, and Jazira, which once formed Sudan’s breadbasket. The situation is further complicated and dangerous because the war is taking on a tribal and political dimension, which could result in unprecedented bloodshed in the region.

According to a UN report (UN.news.org, 18/06/2024), Sudan has the highest number of displaced people in the world, with 9.5 million people forcibly displaced—7.3 million internally displaced and 1.9 million in neighboring countries. The majority of these people are facing famine after more than a year of conflict. The refugee crisis in Sudan is becoming untenable because most of the countries bordering Sudan are poor and/or suffering from internal political instability, civil wars, and famine.

The Sudanese crisis demands immediate action from the international community and unwavering support for a peaceful resolution. Although the regional organization IGAD is trying to mediate between the warring parties and other factions in Sudan, the outcome has been unsatisfactory. The initiative taken by the Saudis and the USA in Jeddah has reached a deadlock, with both signatories violating the agreement for a ceasefire and peaceful resolution of the conflict. Despite these setbacks, countries in the region must continue working to resolve the conflict by engaging directly with warring parties through dialogue and impartial mediation.

In addition to the peace initiatives by regional organizations and the African Union, the UN Security Council should play a leading role by investigating war crimes and crimes against humanity committed by all parties and bringing the perpetrators to an international court. Moreover, the council should impose sanctions on any state or group contributing to the situation by supporting military groups financially and militarily. Furthermore, an arms embargo on the warring parties that cripples their ability to engage in prolonged warfare must be swiftly enforced.

In conclusion, the conflict has the potential to escalate into widespread turmoil and bloodshed in the Horn of Africa and the Red Sea basin. If the regional countries, and particularly the Sudanese elite, fail to act responsibly, Sudan’s sovereignty and integrity will be in peril. The familiar map of Sudan risks disappearing, and the creation of new, smaller states could serve as a dangerous precedent for insurgency wars of secession across the African continent.

Disclaimer

The views and opinions titled "The Forgotten War of Sudan: The Humanitarian Crisis Costing the Lives of Millions", are those of Afewerki Ghebremichael and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Setit Media. ኣብዚ "The Forgotten War of Sudan: The Humanitarian Crisis Costing the Lives of Millions", ዘርእስቱ ጽሑፍ ተገሊጹ ዘሎ ርእይቶን ሓሳብን ናይ Afewerki Ghebremichael እምበር መትከላትን መርገጽን ሰቲት ሚዲያ ዘንጸባርቕ ኣይኮነን።

Eritrea is Looking Towards the East: Between Security, Development, and Potential Implications

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In a recent interview with TASS, the official Russian journal, the ambassador of the Russian Federation to Eritrea revealed a significant development. Asmara is actively strengthening its ties with major global players like Russia and China. This strategic move is not just for security and development but also to support Russia’s growing presence on the African continent, a move seen as a counterbalance to the dominance of Western states, similar to the USSR. The state of Eritrea voted against resolutions at the UN General Assembly denouncing the invasion of Ukraine. This was a clear signal to the Russians that the government of Eritrea (GOE) has an independent foreign policy regarding international conflicts and desires a strong strategic relationship.

As Russia and China expand their global influence, both countries are investing heavily in building alliances that can withstand Western pressure. In this high-stakes game, Eritrea, with its strategic location and crucial role in maritime and trade routes, is emerging as a key player. Eritrea’s potential to serve as a gateway to international maritime routes is a significant advantage, particularly for Russia, which is grappling with unprecedented sanctions, and China, for its Belt and Road projects. This underscores the strategic importance of Eritrea’s foreign policy shift and its potential to reshape regional geopolitics.

Since the peace agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia in 2018, the UNSC has lifted the unjustified sanctions on the country, and the Eritrean government has come out of international isolation. To foster diplomatic relations, the president and foreign minister have been visiting several countries and participating in various international summits, contributing to the efforts to develop the nation.

According to the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs Economic Analysis (Least Developed Countries Triennial Review 2024), Eritrea is among the least developed countries. The Eritrean government desperately needs assistance across various sectors to uplift the nation. The president of Eritrea has specifically highlighted the need for support in developing infrastructure, fishing, mining, energy, human resources, banking, and communication sectors. The country is also grappling with challenges in the agricultural industry, including famine, deforestation, and climate change, and requires assistance to overcome these. Furthermore, security is a paramount issue; hence, the Eritrean government opposes the unilateral presence of Western powers in the Red Sea and is against using the Red Sea basin as their base to attack Yemen.

To conclude, the shift to the east by the GOE to enhance its development and prosperity is under severe scrutiny by thousands of Eritreans living and working in Western countries. Many Eritreans have not forgotten the betrayal of the Western powers in the 1950s when they silenced the voice of the Eritrean people’s right to independence and decided to federate Eritrea with Ethiopia for their geopolitical interests. Moreover, in the recent border conflict with Ethiopia, the West, led by the USA, stood with Ethiopia even after the International Court of Justice’s decision. They failed to pressure Ethiopia to withdraw its troops from the occupied territories and instead imposed heavy sanctions and embargoes against Eritrea. However, Eritreans would still like to see a pragmatic approach from the Eritrean government regarding its relationship with Russia and China. They should not be part of the fight between the great powers because it will not benefit the people and the country. Finally, what this significant development holds for Eritrea’s future growth and security remains to be seen.

Disclaimer

The views and opinions titled "Eritrea is Looking Towards the East: Between Security, Development, and Potential Implications", are those of Afewerki Ghebremichael and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Setit Media. ኣብዚ "Eritrea is Looking Towards the East: Between Security, Development, and Potential Implications", ዘርእስቱ ጽሑፍ ተገሊጹ ዘሎ ርእይቶን ሓሳብን ናይ Afewerki Ghebremichael እምበር መትከላትን መርገጽን ሰቲት ሚዲያ ዘንጸባርቕ ኣይኮነን።

Shkhunat Ha Tikva:- A Tel Aviv Neighborhood Terrorized by A Gang called “Brigade Nehamedu”.

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Gang Violence in Shkhunat Ha Tikva.

 A Brigade of Tigrayan Avengers that started violence against peaceful Diaspora Eritreans in Europe, Canada, and the United States, to obscure Tigray Peoples Liberation Front’s (TPLF) defeat on the battlefield, is now creating havoc in a Tel Aviv neighborhood called Shkhunat Ha Tikva. The group emerged on the scene in November 2020 raising funds for the TPLF and shouting the Tigray wins slogan. It publicly declared it was a branch of the Tigray Defense Forces (TDF). When the TPLF was defeated and signed a surrender agreement in Pretoria, in November 2022, the gang changed its shirt to an old Eritrean flag and started attacking anything that was Eritrean. It has been angry at the Eritrean army’s support to the Ethiopian federal army during the 2020-2022 Ethiopian civil war and its motto is revenge.

Unlike in Israel, the law in Europe, Canada, and the United States caught up and the terrorist gang’s members were hunted down by the police and ending in prison cells. The foot soldiers have received criminal records in their files and lost their status in the countries where they reside as refugees. The Dutch government has started an investigation to determine if the group can be formally designated as a terrorist. Many of its members are fleeing Europe and trekking to the United States through Mexico. The legal measures in Europe, Canada, and the United States are expected to continue, and hundreds are yet to be prosecuted. However, for unknown reasons, unlike in Europe, Canada and the United States, in Israel the group is allowed to roam the streets of Shkhunat Ha Tikva freely, attack, robe, and kill peaceful Eritrean refugees. The members of the Terrorist group live in the Safaria, Tel Aviv neighborhood, and come to Shkhunat Ha Tikva in groups to find their victims. The group has a military-style structure and possesses a spy wing. A recently leaked video indicates that the group’s spy wing, made of women, conspiring on how a Young Eritrean refugee mother of two can be killed. In other countries this video could be enough to prosecute the conspirators, but not in Israel.

The group collects taxes from Eritrean migrants in Israel and attacks those who refuse to pay. The recent killing of an Eritrean small business owner, a father of three young kids, is a typical example how the gang terrorizes the community without any consequences. The story goes like this. A group of Brigade N’Hamedu gang members visited his small grocery store in broad daylight and asked him to increase his monthly pay previously set at $600. The grocery store owner told them because he had a big family to support, he could not increase the extortion monthly pay. The gang members ordered him to vacate his small grocery store in twenty-four hours. When he failed to do so, they came back the next day and killed him.

Reporting to the police does not get you protection and this is happening in the eyes of the sophisticated Israeli security apparatus. Observers indicate that members of the Ethiopian Israeli Felasha community who hail from the Tigray region of Ethiopia may be offering support to the gang group. Overall, because of the unhinged attack by the gang, Eritrean refugees in Israel cannot go to work, worship in a church, or take their kids to school. Again, this is happening in the eyes of the Israeli police. Gathering to celebrate their culture and baptizing their kids in a church is also unthinkable. Recently another Eritrean who left a hospital to buy a child seat for his newly born child was killed by the gang and never had a chance to see his child and wife again. The gang’s orders are specific, anyone who hangs an Eritrean flag, celebrates Eritrean holidays or does not pay protection tax is a primary target. The objective is to Erase the Eritrean identity of the refugees and instill obedience to the gang. The leaders are known to the Israeli police and spew violence on their you-tube channels every day with no consequences. Peaceful gathering is the cornerstone of Israeli democracy. But that does not apply to Eritrean refugees in Israel. Even funeral gatherings are dispersed by the Israeli police using brute force. A recent picture that shows Ethiopian Israeli police attacking Eritreans who were mourning the killing of the grocery store owner was another evidence that the Israeli police have a soft corner for the gang. Who are the Members of the Gang?

 

Tigrayans Who claimed Refugee states as Eritreans.

After the 1998-2000 Eritrea and Ethiopia Border War ended, TPLF and its Western handlers devised a plan to deplete Eritrean human resources and weaken its defense capabilities. As part of the strategy, they established refugee camps a few miles away from the Eritrean border, in Tigray, Ethiopia, and disseminated a wide angled propaganda to lure young Eritreans to the refugee camps. Concurrently the United Nations Higher Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) put a guideline that gives Eritreans automatic acceptance as refugees in any country in the world. After securing such privileges the TPLF confiscated the identification cards of the Eritreans who arrived at the refugee camps and passed them to Tigrayans who impersonated the Eritreans. The Tigrayans ended up settling as Eritrean refugees in Europe, Australia, and North America, and the Eritreans were left to languish in the refugee camps in Tigray for more than a decade. When the 2020 war between the Ethiopian Federal government and the TPLF combatants started, to revenge the government of Eritrea’s support to the Ethiopian Federal government the TPLF combatants killed and raped the Eritrean refugees who were in the Tigray refugee camps. Currently, the Tigrayan, Eritrean impersonators, are the ones who are extending the revenge act in Europe, Israel, and North America and storming Eritrean festivals and attacking unsuspecting diaspora Eritrean communities who have no interest other than celebrating their culture and history.

 

Eritrea Born Tigrayans and Tigrayans who Married to Eritreans.

Due to the decades-long war between Eritrea and Ethiopia, cross-border marriage between Tigrayans and Eritreans is often discouraged. Accordingly, this group has an identity crisis and dreams beyond its means. For this group to be valued in both Eritrea and Tigray It wants to create a new country in East Africa that incorporates Tigray and Eritrea. It often uses its proximity to the Eritrean and Tigrayan cultures and tries to create hate and confusion against the Eritrean Muslim community. This group often hails from the highlands of Eritrea and the Tigray region and considers the Eritrean Moslems as an obstacle to its agenda. Except for working hard to be validated in both Eritrea and Tigray, it does not have any political program. It wants to erase Eritrean history, does not believe in Eritrean independence, and desecrates everything that advances Eritreanism. It openly advocates Eritreanism as its enemy because it does not include Tigray. This group would attack anyone who carries the official Eritrean flag and expresses his/her proud Eritrean heritage. It is against everything that Eritrea is meant for Eritreans. It has a deep inferiority complex and is very violent.

 

Youtubers and Power-Hungry Individuals, So-Called Activists.

As we all know YouTube business flourishes when there is conflict, war, and unrest. Previously obscure YouTubers made a lot of money out of the recent (2020-2022) Ethiopian civil war. When TPLF was defeated and signed a surrender agreement in Pretoria, South Africa, they were scared that their business would dry up. Under the direction of the TPLF, they started propping up terrorist gangs, who have financial and personal problems and prepped them to throw stones and storm Eritrean diaspora community festivals. Accordingly, YouTubers such as Tefetawi Talk show, Assena, Erisat, J. Studio, ERIPM and Finan App infotech are deeply emersed in creating such a bridge that would transition them from broadcasting breaking news from Tigray to broadcasting breaking news from Europe and North America. To be clear these groups of YouTubers have had relationships with the TPLF for a considerable period and served as a channel for the TPLF to distribute money to the Terrorist gangs. In fact, at a certain point, these YouTubers were also funded by TPLF. Also, in this camp, there are power-hungry failed activists who serve as TPLF interlocutors whose main interest is to guide the terrorist activities and share money with the YouTubers and other external parties that have a vested interest in the terrorist activity against the Eritrean Diaspora communities.

 

Money Hungry Foot Soldiers and Disgruntled Eritreans.

TPLF invests a huge amount of money to advance these Terrorist activities. A few years ago, a TPLF financing agent, by the Nickname of “Pilot”, used to distribute money to anyone who was vocal in criticizing the Eritrean government. He was exposed because he put money into someone’s bank account who did not know the scheme and asked why anyone would put $5000 into his bank account. As we all know, being a refugee in Europe is tough. By taking such hardship as an opportunity TPLF buys the voice of unsuspecting young refugees in Europe. In addition to the lack of job opportunities, some disgruntled Eritreans who deserted the army could not return home. This group of individuals does not have the means to cover their transportation costs or sleep in a basic hotel. The combination of economic hardship, alcoholism, drug addiction, and loneliness create a ticking bomb that can explode at any time. Unfortunately, such frustration leads to crossing the rule of law and ending up in legal jeopardy very difficult to recover from. Also, many of them get hurt by the police and even end up dead.

Conclusion.

Whatever injustice may exist in Eritrea, you cannot solve it by throwing stones against women and children in Europe, North America, and Israel. The “if I cannot convince you I will destroy you” logic is the highest level of hopelessness in life. Whatever hatred the European, North American, and Israeli governments have against the Eritrean government, they have a constitutional obligation to protect the Eritrean Diaspora Community from violence perpetrated by the above-mentioned delusional groups. Violence negates constitutional order and governments end up reigning on terrorists. In the end, the violence will be between the police and the terrorists. The sad story is the Israeli Police are not showing a willingness to take the gang’s activities under control. One thing is sure, even though the Israeli police are giving the daily killing of peaceful Eritreans a deaf ear, the continuous cry of Eritrean kids and mothers in Israel will not go unnoticed.

Awet N’Hafash and eternal Glory to our Martyrs.

By Abel Kebedom,

Disclaimer

The views and opinions titled "Shkhunat Ha Tikva:- A Tel Aviv Neighborhood Terrorized by A Gang called “Brigade Nehamedu”.", are those of Abel Kebedom and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Setit Media. ኣብዚ "Shkhunat Ha Tikva:- A Tel Aviv Neighborhood Terrorized by A Gang called “Brigade Nehamedu”.", ዘርእስቱ ጽሑፍ ተገሊጹ ዘሎ ርእይቶን ሓሳብን ናይ Abel Kebedom እምበር መትከላትን መርገጽን ሰቲት ሚዲያ ዘንጸባርቕ ኣይኮነን።

Axum: Where the Boundary Line Between a Kid and an Adult, a Soldier and a Civilian, and a Truth and Lie is Crossed

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What happened in Axum on November 28, 2020, has been a fertile ground for the Western media and their surrogates like Amnesty International to defame their usual target Eritrea. The duplicity, hypocrisy, and double standard of the Western media and their surrogates is an open book for the world to see and I do not want to dwell on it in this article. The story of the Axum incident has been presented in many ways. Some presented it as a conflict between those who wanted to ransack a historical church and those who wanted to protect it. Others presented it as a conflict between religions. None of the stories written about the Axum incident were true. They were sensational stories designed to catch the Western mantra of Human rights violation by a foreign force. In this article, I will describe what happened on the morning of November 28th, 2020, in Axum.


Fig 1.: Axum map.

 

On November 4, 2020, The Tigray Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF) militia attacked the heavily armed Ethiopian Northern Command which had about 30,000 personnel. While many of the members of the Northen Command were massacred or captured by the close to 200,000 TPLF militia on the spot, some were able to flee to Eritrea. Being angry about Eritrea allowing the fleeing Ethiopian soldiers to enter its territory, the TPLF militia that were following the fleeing Ethiopian soldiers attacked the Eritrean army in the Badme front and later hurled a dozen missiles at the world heritage site capital city of Eritrea, Asmara. The Eritrean army did not have any choice except to support the Ethiopian Federal Army and hunt down the TPLF Militia that created havoc in Ethiopia and Eritrea. Accordingly, the Ethiopian Army supported by Eritrean Army routed the TPLF rag-tag militia in a matter of two weeks and controlled most of Tigray.
On November 19th, 2020, the Ethiopian and Eritrean Soldiers entered Axum. While the Ethiopian soldiers were patrolling the city, the Eritrean soldiers camped on a mountainous area located on the outskirts of the city called Mai Koho (see figure 1 above). This was consistent with how the Eritrean soldiers positioned themselves in other Tigray cities they controlled as well. Eritrean soldiers always stayed away from cities except in Adigrat, which was under the full control of the Eritrean Army. In Adigrat, a city larger than Axum, there was no conflict between the Eritrean Army and its dwellers. In fact, the city dwellers were very happy with the rule of law and sense of security the Eritrean soldiers instilled in the city.
In Axum, the Ethiopian soldiers patrolled the city for close to seven days, and about 20 Eritrean soldiers stayed in their camp in a mountainous area outside of the city. For some reason, the Ethiopian soldiers left the city and the 20 Eritrean soldiers remained where they were camping. On the night of November 27, close to 300 TPLF militia from the surrounding areas entered Axum city. They gathered about 200 youngsters who previously received very minimum training and armed them with guns that they recovered from a former army depot in the city. Others were tasked with delivering food and water to the militia and ill-trained youth from the city.
The TPLF militia told the youth they armed, the Eritrean soldiers who were camping at the mountainous area called Mai Koho did not leave with the Ethiopian soldiers because they wanted to surrender to the TPLF militia, and they needed to go to disarm them. Accordingly, on November 28th at 5 a.m. the close 500 TPLF militia and freshly armed youth started attacking the 20 Eritrean soldiers. The war raged for close to three hours and the Eritrean soldiers suffered some casualties but were able to defend their camp. The ill-trained youth from the City of Axum were used as cannon fodders and suffered the heaviest loss. At about the same time Tigray radio and TV declared that the TPLF militia and allied youth destroyed the Eritrean army and recaptured Axum. But the victory breaking news was short-lived. Later the Eritrean soldiers received a reinforcement and the TPLF militia retreated to the city, leaving the dead and injured youth behind.
A while ago I read a quote from a fellow writer that reads “TPLF heroism is different because it does not care about human life”. Driving clue less ill-trained youth to a war they never experienced before is a crime against humanity. That is what happened on November 28th, 2020, in Axum. This was not the only time TPLF conscripted kids, as young as 13 and 14, for the Tigray war. It was a norm in the two-year war rather than an exception and that is why hundreds of thousands of Tigray youths perished. For TPLF, if the ill-trained youth kill an enemy, they are heroes and when they get killed, they are civilians. The name of the game is deception.
Conclusion.
TPLF is a click that erases the boundary between a kid and an adult, a truth and a lie, and a soldier and a civilian. The November 28th Axum war was fought between 20 defending Eritrean soldiers and close to 500 TPLF militia and allied youth attackers. As Western media and their Surrogates presented it, it was not an attack on civilians. When the TPLF militia lost the attack on 20 Eritrean soldiers it did not take time to claim a massacre of civilians by Eritrean soldiers. You cannot have it both ways. The lesson is, do not provoke a sleeping Giant. When you provoke there will be a swift response.
Awet N’Hafash and Eternal Glory to Our Martyrs.

By Abel Kebedom,

Disclaimer

The views and opinions titled "Axum: Where the Boundary Line Between a Kid and an Adult, a Soldier and a Civilian, and a Truth and Lie is Crossed", are those of Abel Kebedom and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Setit Media. ኣብዚ "Axum: Where the Boundary Line Between a Kid and an Adult, a Soldier and a Civilian, and a Truth and Lie is Crossed", ዘርእስቱ ጽሑፍ ተገሊጹ ዘሎ ርእይቶን ሓሳብን ናይ Abel Kebedom እምበር መትከላትን መርገጽን ሰቲት ሚዲያ ዘንጸባርቕ ኣይኮነን።

Who Exactly Killed Seyoum Mesfin, Abay Tsehaye and Asmelash Woldeslassie?

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Seyoum Teshome, a prosperity party hired YouTuber, has been lying for quite some time. He often believes he has the monopoly of information, and he could lie about anything, and no one disproves him. Recently he has been tasked by the Prosperity Party to mend the prosperity party’s rough relationship with the Tigray Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF) by making Eritrea a sacrifice lamb. Although Brigadier General Tesfaye Ayalew from the Ethiopian Army confirmed that the Ethiopian Army killed the three TPLF leaders because they refused to surrender, recently Seyoum Teshome lied by saying Eritrean Army Killed former TPLF leaders Seyoum Mesfin, Abay Tsehaye and Asmelash Woldeslassie. He also credited the Ethiopian army for saving the life of another TPLF official Sebhat Nega and others. The objective of this article is not to delve into the discussion of whether the former TPLF officials deserved to be killed. It is just to set the facts straight and expose prosperity party cadre, Seyoum Teshome’s lies.

The truth is, as Brigadier General Tesfaye Ayalew put it unambiguously, TPLF former officials were killed by the Ethiopian Army. In the video above, on track 8:35 to 9:15, the injured former TPLF special force member who was hiding in the same area where the former TPLF officials were killed explains how it happened. In his words, the TPLF officials were hiding in a villager’s home close to the Tekeze River. When the Ethiopian Army approached the area the villager who was hosting the TPLF officials in his home asked them to leave. They left the home where they were hiding and traveled along the embankment of the Tekeze River between Cher and Shintana. Many Ethiopian Army soldiers who had information about the whereabouts of the TPLF officials went to the home where the TPLF officials were hiding. They threatened the villager with his life and asked him to show them where the TPLF officials were. The scared villager showed the Ethiopian Army the place where the TPLF officials were hiding, and a short gunfight ensued. Accordingly, the TPLF officials and their bodyguards were killed in the spot. The Eritrean army came to the area weeks after the killing of the TPLF officials.

Whether it is good or bad, history should be written and told as is. Falsifying history for political purposes often has more damage than benefits.

Awet N’hafash and Eternal Glory to Our Martyr’s

By Abel Kebedom

Disclaimer

The views and opinions titled "Who Exactly Killed Seyoum Mesfin, Abay Tsehaye and Asmelash Woldeslassie?", are those of Abel Kebedom and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Setit Media. ኣብዚ "Who Exactly Killed Seyoum Mesfin, Abay Tsehaye and Asmelash Woldeslassie?", ዘርእስቱ ጽሑፍ ተገሊጹ ዘሎ ርእይቶን ሓሳብን ናይ Abel Kebedom እምበር መትከላትን መርገጽን ሰቲት ሚዲያ ዘንጸባርቕ ኣይኮነን።

Eritrean Women Making Headway in Sustainable Agricultural Development

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The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is reporting that women in Eritrea not only are taking the lead in helping to promote sustainable agriculture in the country but also those women are involved in addressing the challenges of climate change. In the Habero Tsaeda subregion alone, 30 women — including single mother Hawa Idris Ismael — are engaged in soil and water conservation efforts to save ecosystems, establish sustainable land practices, and safeguard water supplies.

The initiative has been running in Eritrea’s Anseba, Northern Red Sea, and Southern Red Sea regions for the last two years. It will work to restore degraded lands and improve the lives of smallholder climate change-affected farmers. The project is consistent with the Eritrean national development priorities as well as contributes to existential Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the UN, specifically in the areas of poverty eradication, gender equality, and climate change mitigation.

Major Achievements:

  • Soil & water conservation work carried out in 90 subzone sites
  • Restoration of 6,100 hectares of land
  • Direct benefits to 16,065 active conservation-based households

The project’s success is contingent upon community collaboration and resilience, and it was built here for the purposes of long-term positive change. In the village of Habero Tselim, residents have a never-ending supply of water and are able to access clean water from their nearby springs all year round. Villagers were able to do agriculture and get the fruits of their fertile land only because of this development.

Despite challenges such as severe water shortages and drought, the unwavering spirit of the women is contributing to this positive transformation. UNDP stands ready to continue to work with the Government of the State of Eritrea to build the resilience and adaptive capacity of vulnerable groups, with a strong focus on mainstreaming gender equality including women’s empowerment.

With an ambitious vision, remarkable action, and strong partnerships, this drive not only changes the face of land and livelihood in Eritrea, it lays the cornerstone for a more sustainable future — one which ensures that we reap as we sow in the years to come.

Haile Bizen Wins Prestigious Debut Poetry Award for “Let us say that I am”

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In recognition of his outstanding literary work, Haile Bizen was awarded this year’s Best Writing Award for his collection of poems entitled “Let’s Say That I Am.” The prize, presented by the Norwegian Writers’ Association in cooperation with Fagforbundet (a cultural initiative affiliated with the Confederation of Norwegian Trade Unions), was awarded at a literature festival in Lillehammer on May 28, as reported by forfatterforbundet.no.

Haile Bizen, an Eritrean poet, editor, translator, and journalist, has showcased his first exhibition in Norway. Bizen left his hometown in 2009 and relocated to Kristiansand in 2011 as a freelance writer. “Let’s Say I Am” is his first literary work published in Norway.

According to the website, the judges praised the powerful language and vivid imagery in Haile Bizen’s poems, which explore themes of cultural communication, grief, anger, and loss. The poems, written in a structured and fluid style, invite readers to reflect deeply and derive their own meanings. The judges highlighted that Bizen’s work provides a unique perspective on navigating dual cultures and offers a fresh lens through which to view society.

Haile Bizen’s award-winning poetry will be featured in the Keyboard Chat Writers Association column in the coming weeks, offering readers an opportunity to immerse themselves in his influential literary world.

The More Eritrea is Challenged the More it gets Stronger.

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We Eritreans have faced very challenging times throughout our history. At a time when the world categorized the Eritrean struggle for independence as a dormant conflict with no chance of success, the Eritrean gallant liberation fighters made a miracle and bestowed us with full-fledged Independence. When the Western world created a pretext to put multiple sanctions on Eritrea we persisted and managed not only to survive but also thrive. When Eritrean enemies accused Eritrean leaders of crimes against humanity, we flocked to Geneva and challenged them. When they formed the “Sena forum” to encircle Eritrea and chock its people, Eritrea mounted a strong challenge and dismantled their conspiracy. When the Tigray Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF) led Ethiopian government refused to accept and implement the Ethiopia and Eritrea boundary commission final and binding decision and vacate its forces from Eritrean territories, we took our time and pushed it out for good.  When TPLF surrogates tried to disrupt our gatherings and celebrations in the diaspora, we put up a fierce challenge and now they are on the run. Therefore, as we celebrate the 33rd independence of Eritrea, it is essential to reflect on the challenges Eritrea and Eritreans faced and how we overcame them, defended ourselves, and emerged as winners.

History

Looking back on history, it is hard to believe that the dark era that started with Haileslasse’s annulation of the federal arrangement between Eritrea and Ethiopia, on November 14, 1962, and followed by armed struggle for independence and subsequent border war, lasted for 50 years. During the 50 long years, lives were lost, people were uprooted from their villages, and infrastructure was destroyed. At the center of such conflict was the Ethiopian ruler’s persistent effort to keep Eritrea under Ethiopia at any cost. Unfortunately, although on a smaller scale, such an ill-advised policy that destroyed the two countries remains a threat to the peaceful co-existence, and development of the two countries. Some misguided Ethiopian elites and TPLF losers, who found it hard to swallow their pride and accept that Eritrea is an independent country, still consider peace between Eritrea and Ethiopia as a strategy to accomplish their old dream to bring Eritrea back to Ethiopia. On the opposite side, Eritreans think peace with Ethiopia is an opportunity to safeguard their hard-earned sovereignty and live with their Ethiopian brothers and sisters in peace. Accordingly, the first point of the Jeddah peace agreement is “respecting each other’s independence, sovereignty, and territorial integrity”. Not adhering to such an important cornerstone of the peace agreement poses a threat to the overall peace agreement and future relations of the two countries. Therefore, unless Ethiopian elites and TPLF losers come to terms that Eritrea is a United Nations-recognized independent country, and that enjoys internationally recognized borders, peace between Eritrea and Ethiopia will remain elusive. Any effort to disrupt peace in Eritrea will face a strong response as before and will result in further deterioration of relationships between the two countries.

Media

Nowadays with the prefiltration of the mass media, energized by the advent of the internet, anyone from any corner of the world can disseminate information to millions of people in the blink of an eye. Although such development in digital technology can be considered a very positive phenomenon, it has its serious dangers. Non-government entities and actors that control the mass media and harbor hidden agendas can control the minds of unsuspecting followers and use them to achieve their hidden objectives. The situation is even more complicated because special interest groups are buying YouTubers and other media personalities to further their agenda. Many YouTubers in Africa receive funds from the US-based “National Endowment for Democracy (NED)” and other special interest groups. These funds often come with strings attached. In exchange for money, the YouTubers are guided to attack countries that refuse to kneel to the Western interest. This is what Eritrea faced in the last fifty years. Small and big hired media personalities disseminated false information against Eritrea. One very typical example is the news pushed by special interest groups year after year about the presence of Israeli listening bases in Embasoira, in Southern Eritrea, and in the Dahlak Islands, in the Red Sea. Although everyone knows there is no such thing in Eritrea, the news gets recycled almost every year and Eritrea had to respond to it. Why do they do that? Well, it fits to the overall strategy of isolating Eritrea from the Arab World. This example is one of the many disinformation campaigns waged against Eritrea. The good thing is Eritrea fights back and, it may take time, but the truth prevails over lies. This is a good lesson to Ethiopian Government-hired media personalities that are disseminating false information against Eritrea and specifically targeting Eritreans in Ethiopia. Ethiopian leaders have the habit of targeting Eritrean civilians to further their futile agenda to weaken Eritrea. The TPLF-led government expelled 80,000 Eritreans and confiscated their hard-earned property. Now the Abiy Government-sponsored terrorist groups are threatening Eritreans who reside in Ethiopia. The author of this article would like to advise the Abiy government that such ill-advised activities show weakness rather than strength and they do not make any sense at all. They only prolong the healing of the wounds the successive Ethiopian leaders inflicted on Eritrea and Eritreans.

Economy

All previous Ethiopian rulers, with no exception, saw the economy as a major tool to weaken Eritrea and subsequently achieve their dream of bringing Eritrea back to Ethiopia. If some people thought the last 20 years of no war no peace policy imposed on Eritrea was only related to the border, they were wrong. It was a long-term strategy to buy TPLF time to grow Tigrai at the expense of Ethiopia and ultimately develop an economic and military capacity to control Eritrea. In their assumption, in the long term, when Eritreans face economic hardship, it would be natural for them to see the south for jobs and other economic opportunities. That opens the opportunity for TPLF to win the hearts and minds of Eritreans and ultimately bring Eritrea and Tigrai together as one independent country. Thus, history tells us that for their reasons, Ethiopian elites and TPLF losers used the economy as a tool to weaken Eritrea. The sad part of the story is that even though it is on a smaller scale and losing steam, such hidden interest still exists in Ethiopia. After being saved from demise by the TPLF the Abiy government decided to continue the strategy of weakening Eritrea economically. Instead of asking to use Eritrean ports in line with international norms, he decided to go for ownership of the port and corridor to the sea. The prime minister knows this would not happen in Eritrea. He simply brought it to deny Eritrea of port service income from Ethiopia. The gist of the idea is if Eritrea gets port income it would be economically stronger than Ethiopia. Thus, to economically weaken Eritrea it should not get port income. This kind of Zero-Sum game was pursued by the TPLF during the 1998-2000 Eritrea-Ethiopia war and is still in the mind of the Abiy government.

Politics

Sadly, in the minds of Ethiopian elites and TPLF losers, Ethiopia needs to get everything with nothing giving in return to Eritrea. Such kind of thinking is a reminder and continuation of the bankrupted Haileslassie, Derg, and TPLF loser’s policy agenda against Eritrea. After the peace agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia was signed, Eritrea contributed to the peace in Ethiopia significantly. Eritrea gave up thousands of opposition groups that it nurtured over the last twenty years, it dropped its precondition of Ethiopian withdrawal from Sovereign Eritrean territory and agreed to open its borders for trade. As part of the peace agreement, Ethiopian Airlines is flying to Eritrea more than a dozen times a week. It is using Eritrea’s Airspace for its flights to the Unted States, Europe, and Middle Eastern countries, that helped it to save millions of dollars in fuel costs. Ethiopian ships are doing business in Eritrean ports. Above all the Ethiopian government enjoyed the full military and diplomatic support of the Government of Eritrea during the TPLF-initiated Civil war.  What did Eritrea get from Ethiopia in return? One may mention the lifting of the sanction, which should never have happened in the first place. Therefore, Eritreans need to think beyond the deaf diplomacy of our government and be proactive in our response to the unfairness and injustices that come from Ethiopian elites and TPLF losers. The Eritrean government policy is short-term sacrifices for long-term benefits. The problem with such thinking is, in politics, nothing is taken for granted. Things can change in the blink of an eye, and it doesn’t take much time for your goodwill and sacrifices to be taken as signs of weakness. Prior Eritrean government’s investments in diplomatic relations with the TPLF losers and the President of Sudan brought nothing but unimaginable loss. It is time for the Eritrean government to rethink its relations with Ethiopia and let every Eritrean know about it sooner than later. Durable long-term benefits need to be built on incremental short-term benefits, and it takes two to tango.

Conclusion,

Eritreans have suffered enough under successive Ethiopian rulers. The peace agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia had been long overdue but was hijacked for two decades by TPLF’s greedy and corrupt tugs for their ulterior motives. Due to mistaken and misguided policies adopted by successive Ethiopian rulers, the two brotherly and sisterly people of Eritrea and Ethiopia lost a lot for over five decades. However, for the peace agreement to be sustainable Ethiopians need to live up to the terms and sprits of the Jidda agreement that clearly states “respecting each other’s independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity” as a corner stone for sustainable peace. Any ill thinking and hidden agenda that uses Eritrea as a playing card in reginal and international politics will be fought hard by Eritrean and Eritreans.

Victory to the Masses and eternal glory to our Martyrs.

By Abel Kebedom,

Disclaimer

The views and opinions titled "The More Eritrea is Challenged the More it gets Stronger.", are those of Abel Kebedom and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of Setit Media. ኣብዚ "The More Eritrea is Challenged the More it gets Stronger.", ዘርእስቱ ጽሑፍ ተገሊጹ ዘሎ ርእይቶን ሓሳብን ናይ Abel Kebedom እምበር መትከላትን መርገጽን ሰቲት ሚዲያ ዘንጸባርቕ ኣይኮነን።

Preventing a Power Vacuum: Critical Steps for Eritrea’s Leadership Transition

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Eritrea_-_Government_building,_Asmara (Regional Admin Office)

Introduction

I am of the belief that we are all bound by the timing of God. However, we all know that one that has lived a good life is one that has lived up to the ripe old age of their 70s, 80s, and 90s at the maximum. However, when it comes to politicians, it is different. When a senior-aged politician dies in office, one can only think about who will ascend to power and reforms or policy changes would bring that their predecessor failed to attempt or would never do. In the case of Eritrea, our situation is unique.

The reason of having this system of leadership was first blamed on the TPLF-led Ethiopia invasion on Eritrea back in 1998-2000 but has now been blamed on the tense geopolitical climate surrounding the horn. Regardless of if that is an issue, Eritrea, as of 2024, is not engaging in an active war with any countries and should hopefully never have to. The “Check-Engine” light on the PFDJ car is flashing because of the following. PS: Immediate Maintenance is Needed:

  • The Constitution Remains Unimplemented – an important document on how the country should be governed, as well as a contingency plan should a vacancy occur in the Office of The President, Vice-President, Secretary General, etc. However, the attitude towards the constitution by the PFDJ has been rather poor, as the constitution is treated as an “accessory” rather than a necessity for governance. If the constitution remains unimplemented, then nobody will adhere to it.
  • The National Assembly and Central Committee Members Are Dying Off – In an article published by Awate.com that conducted a census on the 75-member central committee, 60% of those chairholders have passed away. This was an article published in 2015, in which today would be nearly a decade. Since the publishing of that article, more members have died due to natural causes. If the president was to call the 150-member unicameral National Assembly into session, we would be looking at a nearly empty hall.

LINK: https://awate.com/eritrea-2015-isaias-afwerki-his-musical-chair/pfdj-central-committee-update-2015/

However, the Central Committee and the National Assembly were never called for a legislative meeting for debating or creating laws/policies, or a Party Congress, which is important for creating 5/10/15 year plans or goals. The Central Committee is an important political organ however, as they are responsible for electing a President should the office ever become vacant.

  • The Skilled Potentials Are Dying Off – With the 2024 death of Ahmed Tahir Baduri, and the 2021 deaths of PFDJ Secretary Alamin Mohammed Seid and Romodan Mohammed Nur, the question lies as to who will succeed Isaias if he passes away. When it comes to Office of The President, it’s not just about having the clout, but having good knowledge on how the political system should work (key word is should). Prior to the deaths of Baduri and Mohammed Nur, we also had skilled potentials that happened to be part of the G-15. But there is a chance that all of them have died. If they are to be alive, I do not think they would be cognitively healthy to take on such huge political challenges fresh out of prison.

Possible Scenarios:

This article isn’t meant to be a scare-tactic or make Eritreans fear monger over the country. Rather, it is bringing something that keeps on being pushed out of the light right back into the light. Considering that the opposition has not only failed in bringing change to Eritrea, but it has also lost confidence in the silent majority due to some elements relations with the TPLF, and even pushed some to become fully PFDJ. So, the possibility of the fragmented opposition in the diaspora to wield any influence in a reform-era Eritrea would be very, very, slim.

If Isaias Is Alive:

  • A Special Party Congress/ Legislative Session Could Be Called: I am speaking about this more on an optimistic note, considering how the legislative branch has been collecting dust for over 20 years. The president would most likely use the session to elect new members of the National Assembly and Central Committee, and then step down to let one of the Central Committee members rise into the office of the President. The successor to Isaias will hopefully implement sweeping reforms (Not Likely)
  • Coup De’Teat: If the president has lost confidence with his subordinates, including those in the military barracks, the president could then be removed by the military. However, Africa has been cursed with never ending coups that always end up being dictatorships that replace dictatorships. It is like the reinvention of the wheel but worse. It would be in the president’s interest to implement the 1997 constitution and amend it. (Not Likely)
  • President/Government Reaches Out to Opposition: (Highly Doubt It but Can Always Be a Possibility): PFDJ has huge distrust of the opposition, often indirectly referring to it as the “Eritrean Quislings League.” However, ever since the rise of the Brigade N’Hamedu insurgencies, there have been many sensible critics of the government that have come out to condemn those attacks. Those individuals would be people such as Daniel Teklay, who was able to meet with well known PFDJ hardliners halfway. It gives me a little bit of hope, but the opposition is still fragmented. There needs to be either a united group, or a popular nationalist opposition group to even increase the chances of the government directly reaching out to them. This can change as the Eritrean political environment is always evolving.

If The President’s Office Becomes Vacant:

NOTE: Before I list out the possible scenarios, I’d like to stress that as Eritreans, most of these are likely scenarios if Eritrea’s internal issues are not being talked about more often. If the President has a change of heart, it would not just be in his best interest, but in the best interest of the country for Option 1 of If Isaias Is Alive to take place.

  • Power Vacuum and Internal Struggle (Most Likely, If Imminent If Reform Isn’t Conducted): The way the Eritrean government is structured is a highly centralized power. You have a weak, nearly dysfunctional judiciary branch, and a virtually nonexistent legislative branch. The Executive branch is what creates ordinances, policies, and “laws” (I use that word loosely) that affect the country. And as you may already know, that centralized power rests in the Office of The President.

 There has not been a discernible hierarchy from the Office of The President since the arrest of Mahmoud Sherrifo (member of the G-15). There is no contingency plan that we know either. Whatever arbitrary “game plan” or “succession plan” that the higher ups at PFDJ may have in place will immediately falter as it is not backed by any form of law or institution. Thus, it is easy to deduce that a power struggle can and most likely would happen if a constitution isn’t implemented. One of the warning signs I have seen was the death of Alamin Mohammed Seid (the former Secretary of the PFDJ party.) While some believe that the position is mainly ceremonial, the position remains vacant as of 2024. Now imagine if the most valuable, and powerful position ends up becoming vacant. What would happen then? There are also vacancies in certain ministries as of 2024, such as the Ministry of Education, Ministry of Fisheries, and Ministry of Energy & Mines, as an example.

  • Military Takeover (Most Likely): If the president does not implement the constitution and properly institutionalizes the branches of government for as long as he draws breath on this air, what could happen is the Eritrean military takes over to set up a “transitional” government. However most “transitional governments” in Africa are just military juntas, so it is a rebirth of another dictatorship.
  • Reform After Isaias (Somewhat Unlikely): There is belief that once the Office of The President becomes vacant that “moderate” PFDJ cadres would seize the opportunity to reform the government, or at least bring the country back on track to the goals outlined in the PFDJ National Charter and 1997 constitution. However, given the political intricacies of the Eritrean government, and with favorable PFDJ cadres dying off, this is becoming more of an unlikely scenario as the days go on.
  • Regional Involvement (Most Likely): This is something that is not talked about much in the Eritrean politics, as for some reason it is taboo to talk about a contingency plan. However, when a power vacuum opens, it also opens the door to foreign actors who harbor ill intentions over the country. Neighboring countries could be involved to influence the situation or install a government of their own liking that suits their interests. Especially with the threats made by Ethiopia over access to a sea, we must always be on guard. I guess this is where geopolitics and internal affairs intersect.

Conclusion:

The conclusion will be an unsolicited advice to Eritrean President, not just for him to save face, but to maintain the integrity of the country. I make this advice as a concerned Eritrean, who is interested in seeing the unity, peace and cohesion be maintained. I will also use some suggestions that Former Finance Minister Berhane Abrehe made in his book:

  • Establish A Clear Succession Plan: The main topic of this article is avoiding a power vacuum. Thus, the president must establish a clear and transparent contingency plan, should the office ever become vacant due to whatever cause. This will involve identifying and preparing successors who have an interest in keeping cohesion, stability, and creating growth in the country. The successors should not be the children of the president, but rather one from the PFDJ cadre that has Eritrea’s best interest at heart.
  • Emergency Party Congress/National Assembly: The last time that the legislation met was in 2002, in a post-G-15 Eritrea. There were visibly many empty seats, and most of the people that have been imprisoned may never return to those seats again, so we must move forward with finding potential candidates to fill those vacancies. The issues that should be brought forward in the emergency party congress and national assembly are the status of political prisoners, how did Eritrea deviate from the goals outlined in the PFDJ national charter, implementing, and amending the 1997 Eritrean constitution, and formally institutionalizing and strengthening all sectors and branches of the Eritrean government.
  • Release Political Prisoners and Promote National Dialogue: The Eritrean President should give a former pardon to political prisoners, most notably Bitweded Abraha, G-15, Berhane Abrehe, or any politician that has been arrested by the Eritrean National Security Department. One thing for sure is that there had to be at least several politicians that died in prison. The president has a moral obligation to officially confirm their death, the time of their death, as well as the cause of the death to give closure to the family members and put an end to this never-ending mystery.

 Furthermore, the Eritrean people, as well as the diaspora has been through a lot. With the recent uprisings, which is mainly due to pent up frustration and a lack of dialogue, there needs to be dialogue between patriotic Eritreans and the government to discuss on the county’s future and build a broad-based consensus on key issues.

There are other issues that the Eritrean government should deliberate more on, with the engagement of Eritreans in the diaspora (and not excluding Eritreans who despite not seeing eye-to-eye with the government, harbors good intentions) on how to remedy on those key issues. However, the solution is making sure a power vacuum doesn’t happen, and to encourage a kickstart of showing a gesture of goodwill and a path towards reconciliation and healing. Hopefully, more and more Eritreans can push for this to save the country.

Successive Ethiopian Expansionist Rulers’ Criminal Acts Against the People of Eritrea: In Pictures.

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For the past two centuries, successive Ethiopian expansionist rulers have committed untold crimes against the people of Eritrea. As we celebrate the 33rd independence of Eritrea, it is paramount that we remember those Eritreans who were massacred by the savage Ethiopian rulers and the heroic liberation fighters who sacrificed their lives for a free and independent Eritrea. The events and pictures below depict real stories, including cruel amputations, public executions, village massacres, and other atrocities.

Figure 1: In March 1, 1896, during the Battle of Adwa, captured Eritrean Italian Askari soldiers were subjected to amputation of one leg and one hand by Ethiopian rulers. The white Italian soldiers were set free unscathed.

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Figure 2: On July 24, 1967, Ethiopian soldiers wiped out several villages in Hazemo, Eritrea, and brutally murdered 172 men in front of their families.

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Figure 3: On January 17, 1970, Ethiopian soldiers rounded up and executed sixty village elders in Ela bared, Eritrea.

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Figure 4: November 30, 1970, Ethiopian soldiers rounded up the entire village of Besikdira, Eritrea, forced the residents into the local mosque, and opened fire until almost all were dead, including the elderly, women, and children.

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Figure 5: In 1971, about 70 students and youth In Keren, Eritrea; suspected of supporting the ELF were publicly executed by hanging, with their families forced to witness the barbarity.

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Figure 6: On December 1st, 1974, at Ona, more than 800 residents and refugees from surrounding villages, notably Besikdira, Eritrea, were massacred by the Ethiopian army.

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Figure 7: On March 9, 1975, following ELF attacks on Agordat, Eritrea, the Ethiopian Army retaliated by killing 258 civilians.

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Figure 8: On February 2, 1975, during a confrontation with the EPLF and ELF in Wekiduba, Eritrea, the Ethiopian Army attacked a church where civilians had sought refuge, resulting in the deaths of 103 innocent people, known in Eritrea as Black Saturday.

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Figure 9: February 24, 1975, shortly after an EPLF attack, Ethiopian troops massacred about 3000 civilians gathered in churches, homes, and schools, in Asmara and also executed 70 students by strangulation.

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Figure 10: In May 1988, 400 people, mostly women and children, were crushed to death by tanks in the village of She’eb, Eritrea.

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Figure 11: On April 24, 1990, in retaliation for a defeat in Massawa, the Ethiopian Army conducted an air attack, killing 50 civilians and injuring 100.

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Figure 12: Between 1998-1999, the TPLF-led Ethiopian government expelled 80,000 Eritrean civilians, confiscating their properties.

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Figure 13: During the 1998-2000 War, Ethiopian soldiers destroyed newly constructed telecommunications buildings in Senafe, Eritrea.

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Figure 14: During the 1998-2000 War, Ethiopian soldiers destroyed a newly constructed hotel in Barentu, Eritrea.

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Figure 15: During the 1998-2000 War, Ethiopian soldiers dug up the Eritrean Martyrs Cemetery in Shambuko and scattered the remains.

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Figure 16: During the 1998-2000 war, Ethiopian soldiers intentionally destroyed private homes using artillery and dynamite.

figure16

 

Conclusion:
The above pictures and events represent only a fraction of the atrocities committed by successive expansionist Ethiopian rulers against the people of Eritrea. Despite these injustices, Eritreans have shown resilience and unity in their struggle for independence. As we celebrate Eritrean independence, let us remember the sacrifices of our martyrs and renew our commitment to justice and freedom.

“Victory to the Masses and Eternal Glory to Our Martyrs.”

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