Inform, Inspire, Embolden. Reconcile!

Saleh Younis (SAAY) has been writing about Eritrea since 1994 when he published "Eritrean Exponent", a quarterly print journal. His writing has been published in several media outlets including Dehai, Eritrean Studies Review, Visafric, Asmarino and, of course, Awate where his column has appeared since the launch of the website in 2000. Focusing on political, economic, educational policies, he approaches his writing from the perspective of the individual citizens' civil liberties and how collectivist governments and overbearing organizations trample all over it in pursuit of their interests. SAAY is the president and CEO of a college with a focus in sound arts and video games and his writing often veers to music critique. He has an MBA from Golden Gate University and a BA from St Mary's College.

A Reporter’s Guide To (Gov of) Eritrea

Dear Western reporter: You are in Eritrea for a “rare visit.”  Actually, it is not so rare anymore but your editor will insist that he put that phrase because it gets viewers/readers/listeners. That or “exclusive.”  Almost all you knew about Eritrea before your visit was that it was the “North Korea of Africa.” You were…

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Did Gov of Eritrea Really Dodge UN Accountability?

Since June 8, when the Commission of Inquiry (CoI) on Human Rights in Eritrea filed a report concluding that “there are reasonable grounds to believe that crimes against humanity” have been committed and are still being committed in Eritrea, there have been questions on how the UN’s Human Rights Council (HRC) would deal with the report.…

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In Geneva, Eritreans Give Voice To Voiceless Compatriots

Last year in June, after Eritreans held the largest rally in the history of Eritrea’s opposition forces, there were questions if it was a one-time incident that could not be repeated and what would happen in June 2016.  On June 23rd, Eritreans calling for end to impunity in Eritrea gave a resounding answer: it will…

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Commission of Inquiry on Eritrea: Report Summary

On June 8, 2016, the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea issued a 94-page report of its findings to the UN’s Human Rights Council.  The Commission was mandated last year by the UN’s Human Rights Council (Resolution A/HRC/29/L.23) to investigate if the crimes perpetrated by senior officials of the Government of Eritrea, and…

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June in Geneva: The Next Political Battle

Mike Smith, Chairman of the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea, previewed his case against members of the Government of Eritrea by reading a statement supporting the Commission’s case that Eritrean officials are guilty of crimes against humanity. This was followed by a rebuttal from Yemane Gebreab, Director of Political Affairs of Eritrea’s…

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Just Don’t Call It A War: People May Get Ideas

This article originally appeared at awate on June 27, 2008.  It is being republished in light of recent news that Eritrea has, after 7 years, released Djibouti prisoners of war. I. The Djibouti “Fabrication”? Djibouti. We have seen this movie before.  Twice.  In 1995 and 1998. The atmospherics is the same: it has an eerie, haunting…

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Eritrea And The Hood – 2015

JANUARY 1. Every year begins with Eritrea’s President Isaias Afwerki’s “State of the Nation” interviews with his own media.  Although we have a draft constitution, he explained, a new constitution had to be drafted because “we are not naive and we refuse to allow them to weaken our capacity.” 2. It Was Lecture Season: Eritrea’s…

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Eritrea’s King Isaias Afwerki Judges The World

Recall that in Part 1 of the interview with Eritrean state media (EriTV), President Isaias Afwerki addressed domestic issues and essentially said there is nothing wrong in Eritrea that a little more controlling and louder commanding couldn’t fix.  Alnahda’s commentary on that can be found here.  In part 2 of his interview last month, our…

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Interview: Isaias Plans To Command Economy, Society

In an interview conducted by EriTV, Eritrea’s state television, which is owned and operated by Isaias Afwerki, Eritrea’s Auditor General, Isaias Afwerki, conducted a thorough assessment of Eritrea’s President, Isaias Afwerki, and found him wanting in all aspects. The take-away message from the two-part interview is one: the government intends to have more command and…

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On the Wings of Malice and Idiocy

Observing the government of Eritrea and its functionaries, one is always struck which one of their two wings is heavier: the malicious one or the stupid one? One can build a case for either one, and it is a running debate among the Eritrean opposition and the silent majority. In an article that appeared at madote.com…

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Grassroots view: The Discourse of Martyrdom and Sovereignty…

22 Jul 2016 Chefena Hailemariam Comments (56)

In Part I tried to show two separate narratives or discourses around martyrdom, sovereignty, and nationalism as represented by the…

Neither Free, Nor Fair: Just "Playing The Game"

20 Jul 2016 Awate Team Comments (9)

[We are working behind the scenes reviving the Tigrinya and Arabic sections of awate.com as well as reinstating the missing…

ENCDC To Hold Its Congress In Addis Ababa

13 Jul 2016 Awate Team Comments (96)

After it stayed stuck in an impasse for almost four years, the Eritrean National Council for Democratic Change (ENCDC) said…

Grassroots View: The Discourse of Martyrdom and Sovereignty

07 Jul 2016 Chefena Hailemariam Comments (6)

Introductory note: This article is based on my contribution to a panel discussion on the 14th of May 2016 organized to…

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