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Addis Ababa Univerisity will admit 100 Eritreans now camped at various refugee camps in Northern Ethiopia. The announcement was made by the president of Addis Ababa University, Professor Endriyas Ishetie.

Addis Ababa University Reserves 100 Seats For Eritrean Refugees

Addis Ababa Univerisity will admit 100 Eritreans now camped at various refugee camps in Northern Ethiopia.  The announcement was made by the president of Addis Ababa University, Professor Andreas Eshete.  

As of today, about 90 students have arrived. The students will undergo “interviews and … general test to find out their levels.” A message from Netsanet Animut, Director, Office of the President, indicated that the students would “finish all necessary preliminary activities before the end of this week.”

The decision is a result of an appeal by Eritrean-Canadian activists who appealed to Professor Andreas who made all the necessary arrangements to secure the admission of the Eritrean refugees to the university.
According to Haile Kiflai, an Eritrean Canadian, the Eritrean-Canadian activists, who were in Addis Ababa to attend the National Conference for Democratic Change (NCDC), met with Ethiopian authorities on August 10 and 13, 2010. The NCDC was held in Addis Ababa between July 30 and August 10, 2010 and was attended by nearly 350 Eritreans from all parts of the world and resulted in the election of a diverse, 53- member Commission which, among other things, is tasked with preparing an even bigger national conference.

After the bitterness of the 1998-2000 border war between Eritrea and Ethiopia, the Ethiopian authorities have been gradually and increasingly receptive to direct appeals by Eritrean citizens and human rights activists.  The recent decision by Addis Ababa University comes in the heels of the Ethiopian government decision to allow Eritrean refugees freedom of movement to leave the refugee camps; to grant Eritreans carrying Eritrean passports entry visas to Ethiopia.  the In 2007, a direct appeal from Eritrean American activists resulted in Ethiopia accepting Eritrean refugees whom Egypt wanted to deport back to Eritrea where they would have been held in labor camps, or executed for leaving the country “illegally.”

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  • Aregash

    I know i might late to response on this holy work but even if i would like to express my deep appreciation to the people and government of Ethiopia for being able to some how to compensate the devils work with the holy thing. I’m from these students being able to use this opportunity in fact i will be graduate with my BA in this summer ,what a blessing work and effective one. i want say this to all students who are graduate this summer we are a sample of good in black history and we have a responsibility to work for peace and testimony what Ethiopian did for us in our harsh time thank you

  • It was in summer 1998 during the initial fervor of the border war, Eritrean students who were studying in Ethiopia various universities were detained by authorities. The news infuriated every red blooded Eritrean to the point of disgust. I remember then the then Dean of Asmara university Dr. Woldeab Issac working frantically, appealing to every humanitarian and governmental organization to secure their release. His exact words were, “I would like to appeal to all of you to use your good offices in whatever possible way, such as through your governments, through your national or European universities associations, to put pressure on the Ethiopian authorities to release these innocent students unconditionally. Such acts, in my opinion, must be condemned because, if they pass unchallenge, they will probably place the whole student exchange programme at a much greater risk than has been witnessed before.”

    Three years later, the same students faced his wrath in the desert of Wi-A. University of Asmara students herded like cows in the middle of the desert, until some of them fell dead from heat stroke and many hospitalized. Dr Woldeab and his handlers harassed the students and threatened them with death. The poor souls surrounded by gun tooting gangs were coerced to sign a confession under the duress of threat. I remember then Awate cartoonist dubbing the situation as “Dr. Woldeab hyaway Guasa (kind shepherd) “ who gave his flocks to the wolfs.

    Now over a decade later, Eritrean youth who are reduced to the property of the government and their bright future is condemned to perpetual slavery and shaped out by PFDJ to be a permanent gun carriers all their productive life. Universities and high schools turned to boot camps and life for Eritrean youth became unbearable. Their only options is to run and run far away.

    Now, the same university that detained them under suspicion, is extending them a hand to pursue higher education and better their future that is denied them by their government. What an irony. My thanks goes to the efforts and dedication of the Canadian civil organization who secured this opportunity to the condemned Eritrean youth. Every concerned Eritrean individually or organized has to do his/her best to help them better their future. Or else, Eritrea will be left with gun carriers only.