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Isaias Afwerki: We Were Not Chosen

The fiercest critic of the Government of Eritrea, a guy by the name of Isaias Afwerki, was at it again, mercilessly taking down its 25-year-record of utter failure. This is an annual ritual, presented as an “interview” with Eri-TV; and, if you are asking why would a state-owned TV that doesn’t brook any criticism from…

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Atlantic Council: Leaving Eritreans In The Cold

On December 8, the Atlantic Council, an American think-tank, organized a panel discussion on Eritrea. Entitled “Rethinking Eritrea”, the event was moderated by Bronwyn Bruton,the deputy director of the think tank’s Africa Center; and the panelists were Seth Kaplan, a professorial lecturer at Johns Hopkins University; Anthony Carroll, senior associate at the Center for Strategic…

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Eritrea: Of Pressure Valves And Self-Inflicted Wounds

Last month, this column offered suggestions to journalists on how to do their job in Eritrea when they are given that “rare” access.  There is a reason why the access the Government of Eritrea grants journalists is inversely proportional to their knowledge and/or skepticism of the actions of the Government of Eritrea over the last 25 years:…

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It’s Late, But Not That Late For Bronwyn Bruton

Bronwyn Bruton was one of the three individuals who provided their personal testimonies at the US Congress’s Foreign Affairs Committee (Subcommittee on Africa) on September 14, 2016.  This fact alone is an incredible feat for Ms. Bruton: a person who would have struggled to find Eritrea on a map 5 years ago is now an expert witness…

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The Eritrean “System” is a Monocracy

And in this case, the monocracy is a manocracy. Welcome to the long-running debate between Awatista columnist Amanuel Hidrat and Al-Nahda on whether the regime lording over Eritrea is “a system” (his position) or a One-Man-Show (my position.)  In the past, each side presented arguments to make his case not as an intellectual excercise but…

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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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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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Funeral Ceremony Held for Egyptian Terrorist Victims

10 Apr 2017 Gedab News Comments (11)

Amid tight security arrangements, and guarded by nervous armed Egyptian officers, funeral services were held for the victims of the…

Are Muslims or Muslim Societies Prone to Violence?

06 Apr 2017 Ismail Omer-Ali Comments (157)

I want to highlight three points in this article. First, I want to underscore the obvious fact that killing of…

Abreha The Adulisian And The Soi-Disant Agazians

07 Apr 2017 "Gheteb" Comments (242)

As an introduction and in an effort of rendering a general overview, here is a thumbnail account of a man named…

Ciham's Fifth Birthday Inside Isaias' Jail, More Arrests

03 Apr 2017 Awate Team Comments (162)

Today, April 4, 2017, Ciham Ali Abdu turns twenty inside an Eritrean prison. She was fifteen years old when she…

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