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From Moscow With Lies: Yemane Gebreab Interview

Yemane Gebreab, presidential adviser and director of Eritrea’s ruling (and sole legal) party was part of an Eritrean delegation–headed by Eritrean Foreign Minister Osman Saleh–that conducted a meeting with Russia’s Foreign Minister, S. Lavrov. In their joint press conference following the meeting,  the Russian Foreign Minister indicated that he had discussed the relationship between Eritrea and Ethiopia and how Russia wishes to normalize them and that the two parties had discussed, among other issues, investment opportunities for Russian companies. On February 17, 2014, the Arabic section of the RT Russian television interviewed Yemane Gebreab. The interview was conducted by Selam Musafir, the presenter of a program called “Qusari Alqol.” Yemane’s statements, similar to Isaias’ repeated statements: denied the existence of hundreds of thousands of Eritrean refugees languishing in refugee camps in Sudan since the sixties; claimed that Ethiopia has more migrants per capita than Eritrea; blamed the United States for the exodus of tens of thousands of Eritrean youth fleeing their homeland; ruled out any democratic reform–political pluralism–in Eritrea.

The interview was translated and transcribed from Arabic to English by the Awate Team.
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Selam Musafir [Introducing the subject]:  Do you remember Eritrea? This state that was liberated in the beginning of the nineties of the last century; and before that was occupying the first pages of the news agencies and newspapers and television stations? When the Eritreans people were struggling to achieve full independence from Ethiopia that was then occupying it. Soon after, the Arabs forgot the existence of this state that occupies a very important location on the Horn of Africa, close to the Bab El Mendeb and has the longest coast of any African country on the Red Sea. Eritrea is a country full of resources that are not exploited; is it possible for it to go out of isolation after the UN imposed a sanction on it? And after its allies, and friends, and the sisterly countries of Eritrea in the neighboring countries, and African countries support part of this sanctions? Here with us to talk about the forgotten Eritrea and its unexploited resources is Mr. Yemane Gebreab, the adviser of the Eritrean president. Welcome Mr. Yemane.

Yemane Gebreab: Thank you.

Selam Musafir: You are in Moscow on the occasion of the visit of the Eritrean delegation under the leadership of the foreign minister, and you have met today with Mr. Sergei Lavrov. Firstly, why this interest in Moscow –that is probably considered a surprise–by a country which, even neighbors close to it are about to forget its existence, and they didn’t come to its help when it is under sanctions?

Yemane: Thank you for this opportunity that you provided to me and the Eritrean delegation here in Moscow. We in Eritrea believe there is a wrong picture about Eritrea. Eritrea is not isolated; it is not forgotten. It has presence and an active and significant role in the Horn of Africa, in the Nile basin, in the Red Sea. It has strong relations, and relations of cooperation and partnership with many countries in the region. And the picture, the wrong picture of isolation of Eritrea, should be corrected. The visit to Moscow in itself shows that Eritrea is not isolated. Eritrea has connections in the region but also outside the region. The visit to Moscow comes within the [task][ of active Eritrean diplomacy. First, the priority of its diplomacy is [directed towards] the neighboring countries in the Horn of Africa, the Arab countries neighboring Eritrea with which it has ancient bonds, historical cultural …and mutual interest. Eritrea has a warm relations with the Gulf States which are close to Eritrea. Eritrea has a good and strong relations with Sudan, and Egypt which is considered one of the important countries in the Middle east. And Eritrea also has relations outside this region in Africa in Asia, in Europe and others. We believe that Russia is a big country; it is a great country; it is a state that has a significant role in the international community, particularly in this situation. The visit comes within this context.

Selam Musafir: Was there an agreement on some projects? Obviously Eritrea is in need of investment, is need of encouraging tourism, there are breathtaking regions in Eritrea and the climate is temperate year round. Do you intend to develop what is known as tourism industry and agreement with the Russian side on investments and projects inside Eritrea?

Yemane: First, the goal of this visit is for consultations with the Russian side on important regional and international issues that both countries and both states are interested in. We would like for Russia to have an effective, constructive, significant, and active role in the region. We and the region, in our view, suffered from the absence of Russia for a quarter of century.  Russia was busy with its internal issues and it went through a stage that can be considered difficult and complicated. This absence had a damaging effect on the region.

Selam Musafir:  Russia comes back actively in the regional and international arena…

Yemane: Regarding bilateral relations, we want to have commercial and investment relations with Russia…tourism could be one of the sectors but in our view there are more important fields…

Selam Musafir: Like what, for example…?

Yemane: We like to develop the infrastructure in Eritrea: airports, ports, roads, infrastructure, energy in Eritrea, water, and we wish to have the involvement of Russian companies in these sectors. We have the sector of industry, agriculture… on the trading sector. We want to buy basic materials from Russia. On the mining sector, we also want the Russian companies to be involved because there is involvement of companies from all over the world. And we want there to be an involvement, and in fact, there is already a Russian involvement.

Selam Musafir:  You said that you have good relations with the neighboring countries, but the opposition of the system in Eritrea say that your relations with Sudan is not alright because… accusations, claims, are directed against you–that you support secessionist movement in Sudan. Of course Ethiopia hosts what is known as National Council, and it is a group of opposition to the system of Mr. Afwerki. These important countries in the region, it seems, they probably contribute, one way or the other, to confirm that what you say that Eritrea is not isolated is [wrong]. What is the truth regarding these [allegations]?

Yemane:  This picture is not correct. There are no secessionist movements in Sudan at this moment. Our relations with Sudan is excellent. There is cooperation, and strategic cooperation at this moment. The Sudanese president visited Eritrea a month ago. The Eritrean president was in Port Sudan, in Sudan, last November. There are relations and partnership and there is cooperation in all aspects–this is a mutual, integration, between Eritrea and Sudan. The relations are excellent. Eritrea had a role, a constructive and positive role in finding solutions to the issue of Eastern Sudan. Eritrea played a role in eastern Sudan…

Selam Musafir: as a facilitator between the North and south?

Yemane: No. Between Eastern Sudan and the central government…

Selam Musafir:You mean Darfur’s and…

Yemane: No.  Eastern Sudan…

Selam Musafir: Eastern Sudan also…

Yemane: Also Eritrea played a role in the issue of Darfur and in the issue of South Sudan. And Sudan,  it has a role and still has. The relations of Eritrea is not limited to Sudan, Khartoum but…

Selam Musafir: But with all…

Yemane: …also with South Sudan, and Juba.

Selam Musafir: Regarding Ethiopia, it is considered a state that embraces the force that opposes the Eritrean leadership…

Yemane: We do not see an opposition force that has weight and acceptance in Eritrea. True, there is an attempt by the government in Ethiopia to create problems in Eritrea, but these policies were followed by Ethiopia for 15 years and they didn’t produce results. The problem in the Horn of Africa is not Ethiopia, the problem emanates from the wrong American policies in the Horn of Africa. The system, or the American administration, believes that Ethiopia can be its major support in the Horn of Africa and it protects [Ethiopia] in its transgressions against international law. At this moment, Ethiopia occupies Eritrean territories, and this is in spite of international ruling, after resolutions of Security council in the UN. The problem in Ethiopia is that of a minority government. Those who rule Ethiopia at this moment are from a small region, a region that doesn’t represent more than 5% of the peoples of Ethiopia, of the Ethiopian people.  And this force, this government, in order to remain in power, it practices divisive politics inside Ethiopia. It creates problems with all [its] neighbors including Eritrea, Somalia and others…

Selam Musafir: Okay. You talk of the role of America as if it is directed in its polices against Eritrea. There are reports that indicate that America is disturbed by the Eritrean policies because it sold, or leased islands to Iran. And these islands have become a spearhead against the neighboring countries. And Yemen complains more about that saying that through these islands Iran is sending support to the Huthiyis [Yemeni rebels]. Firstly, is it true that you sell islands, either to Iran or Israel, or you lease it to these countries? Is there an Eritrean role in the incidents of Yemen?

Yemane:  Firstly the Eritrean people struggled, as you mentioned, for thirty years. The liberation war took, the liberation war, and [Eritrea] paid precious price so that it can liberate its country and protect its dignity and protect its territories. The Eritrean people, after the struggle and after this precious price, do not have a will to sell Eritrean islands, or an inch of the Eritrean soil. This is far from the customs and political culture of Eritrea. Eritrea, the Eritrean people and the Eritrea government are known for protecting the national dignity, respect…

Selam Musafir: …Yes

Yemane: I will come to the question you raised. There are rumors that there is an Iranian military base and there are rumors that there is an Israeli military base also. Such talks are around, but they are not true. I wish that Russia can send a delegation of reporters to visit Eritrean lands and see from up close that this talk is not true. It is not there. We, in our political culture, we don’t follow such policies. Our relation with Yemen is considered a venerable relation and, in the end, we consider ourselves one people with the Yemenis; we do not wish to have a negative role in Yemeni issue. We defended the Yemeni unity, we pushed some policies, and we are still adamant about the safety and stability of Yemen. And these rumors are not true and have no basis in the current state on Eritrea.

Selam Musafir: It means there is no lease, no selling of military bases, neither to Iran or Israel…?

Yemane: To any country. Eritrea doesn’t accept any country to have a military base in Eritrean territories. Be it Iran. Be it Israel. Be it the USA, even the countries that are friendly and close to Eritrea. This is far from Eritrean policies.

Selam Musafir: There is another problem, it is probably highlighted in the media that a high percentage of those pursuing  immigration to the North, to Europe, and mostly they are exposed to the risk drowning in the seas, a large portion of them are Eritreans. Firstly, why this high exodus from a country that has resources, [and is] stable politically? Why do the youth leave in search of happiness or another life In Europe? And what about the million of Eritrean refugees who live in camps until now, as it is said, in the Republic of Sudan?

Yemane: Firstly, there is a wrong and misleading information in this aspect. Also there is politicization of the issue of immigration. Immigration, in our time, at this time, it is a normal issue. There is immigration from all countries to many [other] countries. There is immigration from Russia. There is immigration from Eastern Europe. There is immigration from states like Spain, Portugal, and Ireland, and there is also immigration from Africa….

Selam Musafir: Even from the happy Swedes, they migrate to America!

Yemane: True, this immigration in this era, has become natural, but there is politicization when it comes to Eritrea..

Selam Musafir: What is the reason [for that]?

Yemane: The reason is the enmity of America towards Eritrea. This is the problem. And there are policies that are followed to push people to immigrate, human trafficking, targeting Eritrea. We in Eritrea, we requested from the United Nations to carry out an independent investigation on this issue because we became victims of the policies that attempt….. encourages the Eritrean youth to leave their country. These policies are criminal and we requested an independent investigation by the UN of these problems. Also, in our meeting with the Russian foreign minister, Mr. Lavrov, we presented this issue and requested a position from Russia at the UN and the security council, to support this Eritrean request for independent investigation that is free and honest, for this problem. But when we see the issue of immigration and we compare the migration from Ethiopia and Eritrea for instance, immigration from Ethiopia is tens of folds, twenty folds compared to Eritrea…

Selam Musafir: But as you know the population of Ethiopia is bigger by tens of folds, maybe many [more inaudible] folds?

Yemane: True. But even the ratio of immigrants compared to the population. The immigration from Ethiopia is many folds the number of Eritreans but rarely do you hear about Ethiopian immigration problems. There is politicization, and the issue of encouraging…

Selam Musafir: How about the Eritreans who live in Sudan, is this number of a million true.. as if it is a state within a state?

Yemane: Firstly this information is also not correct. But we do not consider Eritreans in Sudan refugees. It is their country. And the Sudanese in Eritrea also, we do not consider them refugees. The Sudanese in Eritrea, we welcome them. It is their second country, it is their first country. We are neighbors and between neighbors there is continuous movement, and the border, as far as the people are concerned, it is not a border that prevents people. Therefore, there are Eritreans who started to live in Sudan since the forties, the fifties and sixties of the last century. They are naturalized and they are there and some have taken Sudanese citizenship and they are in Eastern Sudan. But there is also affiliation to Eritrea, and there is genuine bonds and strong [relations] with their brethren and friends in Eritrea.

Selam Musafir: It means there is no truth to the claim that there are refugees in Sudanese territories suffering from one [bad] conditions or another, and cannot return to their country? They can return any time…?

Yemane: No. No. Any Eritrean has the right to return to his country and this is his country and no one will deny him that, they can return to the country.

Selam Musafir: Since we opened files of complicated issues, let’s call it internal, there is also criticism directed at the policies of President Isaias, because it follows the policy of a single party. Don’t you think of opening up, the way for pluralism, carrying out elections? True, he enjoys the description of a national leader who led a liberation movement and … meaning, like Fidel Castro and others. Therefore he is said to enjoy what is known as revolutionary legitimacy and he remained in power for about… more than two decades, since the independence until now. Don’t you think of opening up the way for… Also, he froze the parliament, before two-years, there was a parliament and it was frozen since many years. Don’t you consider carrying out elections and establishing commissions, permitting political parties to work?

Yemane: First, Eritrea is a new country, a state in formation, it is, as you said, [only] twenty years old. We are in the beginning of building a country and a state in Eritrea. Talks about democracy, talk about political pluralism, there must be debate on this issue. For example, the latest development in South Sudan and people talk about democracy, talk about election. Is it wise that South Sudan, when it still cannot build state, thinks of pluralism and democracy? When we see the experiences of peoples, the experiences of the West that push for the issue of democracy–how many years, how many decades, how many centuries it took theses people to reach to the stage of building the current political systems in these countries? We always ask. When one talks about economic development, and one asks, how many years will it take a country like Eritrea for example, until it becomes an economically developed modern country? How many years? People say: thirty years, forty years. There are people who think Eritrea and African countries will not be industrial, economically developed countries, economically modern. But when it comes to the political system, they think it is possible to build a developed, modern political system in a year or two! This is incomprehensible. The socio-economic development and the political development must be balanced and issues should pass through many paths and not only in one path. We in Eritrea are not in a hurry on this issue. We are a small people…

Selam Musafir: we reached the end of the program. I understand from that you will open democratic life only after you are confident that the state has been built with its establishments and issues … you are not in a hurry so that instability doesn’t happen in the country. Mr. Yemane Gebreab, the political adviser of the Eritrean president, thank you for these highlights and information about Eritrea which, it seems,  is not going to be forgotten after today. Thank you dear viewers. This is Selam Musafir wishing you pleasant times.

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  • merhaba

    The interview was translated and transcribed from Arabic to English by the Awate Team.

    That one statement discredits this whole report…, unless its for your brainless supporters because they are already on your side. You just wish to badmouth eritrea. Actually trying to prove a point or offer a solution is not even in your realm of thinking. Nothing from woyane backed websites awate.com and asmarino.com can be taken with any seriousness. The objective is for simple blackening the name of Eritrea or anything related.

  • Nathan Aman

    It is beyond any human understanding for anyone at this juncture of our Eritrean history to spend irrelevant article many young Eritreans were being punished in Sawa , parents were losing their irrelevant article many young Eritreans were being punished in Sawa , parents were losing their hours writing a litany of garbage. For Semere Tesfai to devote that many paragraphs, explanations, and descriptions e.tc in his article in order to absolve the dictatorial regime in Eritrea of his criminal acts against our beloved people of Eritrea. Semere Tesfai while he was writing his meaningless and irrelevant article many young Eritreans were being punished in Sawa , parents were losing their children to be taken away to Sawa without their consent. Many other Eritreans were and still are suffering every minute he and the likes of him defend the mafia regime in Eritrea.

    Now why would anyone write like Semere Tesfai did unless he is out of this planet or he is the dictator himself! The other thing that comes to mind is therefore, people even in our beloved Eritrea like to be slaves of a dictator and defend him in such a manner. If Semere Tesfai really cares about our people and opposes this barbarian dictatorial regime he should have spent his time asking the regime such questions as:

    Why the regime did started the 1998-2000 war with Ethiopia? As has been proved and told by many Ex-PFDJ soldiers and cadres that Isayas gave orders to the military to fire the first shot at the Ethiopians before leaving for Saudi Arabia. The dictator as has been described by many leaves the county after giving orders either for war or rounding up innocent young children for Sawa in his absence. Then he blames the actions taken to those on lower level. But people are smart enough to know his tricks and they did.

    Why the Eritrean regime didn’t report the issues of the border conflict to the U.N and other international bodies instead of sending soldiers unilaterally attacking a few Ethiopian soldiers/representatives at the border? Also why didn’t you use your valuable time you wasted writing your article to ask why the dictatorial regime in the middle of a confusion in the world during the September, 11th, 2001 terrorist attack in the United States jailed all the G15 members and most Free Press journalists in Eritrea without the due process of the law. By the way in case you forgot they are still in jail with some believed to be deceased.

    Why didn’t you ask the dictatorial regime why he did not implement the Ratified Eritrean Constitution of 1997? You did not bother to question the regime why can’t he let the youth in Sawa leave after finishing their tour of 18 months as was originally planned and is the norm in most countries in the world? Don’t give us the lame excuse we hear nowadays from HIGDEF sympathizers, worshipers and the brainwashed and the clueless that the reason the regime is keeping them in Sawa Is because of national security! Why do we have to lose our Eritrean youth all over the world including the Sahara the rough seas and many other places to run away from the inhumane treatment of the regime? There is nothing more dangerous to our national security than losing our best minded and future leaders and producers of Eritrea being drained out of our country just to run away from this horrible government.

    Why didn’t you scold the PFDJ government and the dictator Isayas as to why he let the Eritrean Media describe the Italian Island of Lampedusa Tragedy of our hard to get back people that perished 360 of them in the Mediterranean Sea as illegal African Immigrants? This while fully aware of their identities which as we all know were about 95% Eritrean nationals. Please do not make excuses for the regime that he did not knew about the victims’ identities. As is known the regime knows everything that takes place day in and day out by micro managing everything throughout his government. Ultimately, everything that happens to Eritrea and Eritreans is the SOLE responsibility of the DICTATOR. As the saying goes “you bought it you own it” The dictator decided to control, rule and subjugate Eritrea and Eritreans, therefore he is the ONLY one responsible for its good and bad outcomes. Of course those who work, support, ally, protect, defend, and apologize for & on his behalf are as much RESPONSIBLE as him!

    Why do you, the puppets, the blind supporters of the dictator and the dictator blame the West, the U.N and the Opposition among others for the regime’s short comings? The west has not done anything to hurt Eritrea that has been proven. In fact the U.S mediated the cease fire that ended the border war between Eritrea and Ethiopia. I remember how the Issyas regime treated Susan Rice the former U.S Assistant Secretary of State for African affairs. The Isayas regime doesn’t know how to play in the diplomatic arena so they fight with everyone even the ones coming to their rescue. What a weird way to deal with the international community. On the contrary the West is hosting thousands of Eritreans on its soil. “Kindi Zekholeskus Idey Tenekhesku indiu” Now I know our culture teaches us to be respectable to those who are nice to us, especially those who give and shelter us. It also has a saying that goes like “Nzigeberelkas Way Giberelu Way ka’a Nigerelu” As a matter of fact I pray for the U.S every day for sheltering me and my family for countless years without violating my our rights to date. I always say the Good Lord is so good to me and my family and others as fortunate as us that what would have happened to thousands of us Eritreans that live in these wonderful democratic and humane societies of the West such as The U.S.A, Canada and other European countries and others that are hosting us. We are very lucky unlike the very unfortunate people of our Eritrea that are suffering in Eritrea as I write this article.

    I remember a few years after the border war between Eritrea and Ethiopia ended and settled due to the international intervention, the European Parliament held a SPECIAL MEETING for ERITREA. In those meetings the E.U Parliamentarians begged the Eritrean Government to settle the issue once and for all and offered to pay the cost of the war for both Eritrea and Ethiopia. Now will our enemies do anything like that if they don’t care about us? Semere Tesfai never said anything positive about all these countries including the yearly good will gesture the E.U does by giving the Eritrean government about 138 million dollars to show they still care about Eritrea. In the U.S the Eritrean government using a certain lobbyist by the name of Thomas Mountain lobbied to get the U.S government’s attention for years till few years ago paying about 50.000 U.S dollars a month. When that did not work the regime went on full scale attack against the U.S. It is all a lie when the regime says they need us (the U.S) more than we need them but we know the truth of their false claim, what a shame.

    The U.N was not able to continue its problem solving activities in Eritrea due to the Eritrean government’s incursions in most of East and Horn of Africa. First it started war with Yemen, then involved it’s self in The Sudan’s internal affairs, then it started the war with Ethiopia 1998-2000 and later it attacked Djibouti not to forget the help it is currently providing the Al- Shabaab in Somalia as has been reported and proved by the U.N Monitoring Group of Eritrea and Somalia. Now if you look at the regime in Eritrea it is like a bad kid in the block that no one wants’ to deal or play with. So can you really blame any group or country for Eritrea’s predicament when it is the dictatorial regime causing all the problems in Eritrea and beyond?

    I would like to agree with Semere Tesfai on the issue of the opposition parties (partly). It is true the opposition groups have been slow to bring about rapid change to the Eritrean people’s suffering. It is also true that they are not united enough to form a strong challenge to the regime. Having said that it is very disingenuous of you to put all or most of the regime’s shortcomings on them. Remember they are not the ones in POWER they are only doing their best in standing up on behalf of the most suffering people of Eritrea .Surely the chaos that the regime is causing in Eritrea is only due to the regime’s horrible way of ruling the country. When a country is ruled without laws then you have no way of controlling the ruling party when it is taking the country into the abyss. All these would have been avoided if the PFDJ and the dictator would have implemented the Ratified Eritrean Constitution of 1997.

    In conclusion I feel sorry for those of you who support the regime with no questions asked whatsoever. Also for those who like to prolong his domination and punishment of our most disadvantaged people of Eritrea, SHAME ON YOU! You would have been on the side of the majority of Eritreans now when it is the critical moment but you chose to be on the side of the killer, jailer, thief, harasser and controlling dictator in Eritrea. There would be time you will regret your actions sooner than later. History does keep track of people like you and when people find out about you, you will be brought into justice for the crimes you are committing against the most hurt people in the planet/Earth today the Eritrean people. It is unbelievable for you all to forget the promise of the GHEDLI Suwua’at who fought and died to free and indulge their fathers, mothers, children, sisters and brothers and all the Eritrean people by extension.

    Freedom, peace and Hope for our beloved people of Eritrea and shame and disgrace to those who constantly hurt them!!!!

    Nathan Aman

  • Semere Tesfai

    Serray

    Thank you for your detailed response. Having said that, let me be very clear about my position with regards to Isaias, PFDJ, EPLF, opposition, Ghedli and all.

    – Without a doubt, I oppose the current PFDJ government; but I don’t have any animosity against the people who toiled, invested and still believe in PFDJ. I believe – like me, you and everybody else, PFDJ members with no exception should have every right to live free, to speak freely, to elect and to be elected freely, to invest freely and to work freely in their own country without being judged, intimidated or lynched (weeded-out) for their political belief. I don’t see the wisdom of walking a slippery slop that no one knows where to start and end (from ELF to EPLF to PFDJ)

    – As an opposition, our objective ought not be to defeat and deny the rights of those whom we oppose or believe are doing us harm (PFDJ/EPLF crowd in this case) but to give to those on the other side of the PFDJ fence, equal rights and equal protection under the law to the level of those whom we perceive are free (PFDJits).

    – I don’t have any problem, if those on the other side of the PFDJ fence lead Eritrea tomorrow morning; but they have to earn it. And the mantra of any civilized opposition is ‘WE CAN DO BETTER’ than the governing regime. And if the Eritrean opposition want to remain relevant, they have to prove to the Eritrean people that they can do a better job than the PFDJ regime. They have to prove they can defend Eritrea better than PFDJ; they have to prove they can grow the Eritrean economy better than PFDJ; they have to prove they have better representative leaders than the PFDJ regime; they have to present their case and prove that they could stop the exodus of our young; they have to come-up with a balanced ‘Eritrean policy’ that would bring sustainable peace to our north and south. And they don’t have it; and you don’t have it. The PFDJ government being bad is not reason enough people to rally behind the opposition. And the proof is the current status of the opposition.

    – Ghedli denigrating, trying to re-write history, trash talking, insulting the intelligence of those you disagree with is repulsive. It doesn’t help to your cause and mine. Let’s face it, we are where we are. Eritrea is a sovereign country and there is no going back. If need be, let’s fix what was broken in the past through trust and respect. Please stop being fixated in our past and stop disrespecting others. These kind talks hurts the image of the opposition more than it does harm the PFDJ regime. And one more thing, please, stop your obsession with Isaias; politics is not a one man game; it is about competing ideas and competing interests vying to dominate and control. And that is not a sin.

    – coup or not coup – well, Serray either you are for a new idea (civilized opposition) or for the hopeless old idea (coup) that has been practiced by Africans and other poor countries for over six decades. And I choose civilized opposition every time. That way, I don’t have to lie to myself and to my countrymen/women by saying we will start democracy after the coup.

    Lampadosa: it might be tempting to use it against the PFDJ regime, but it is not smart politics. I believe Intelligent people like you shouldn’t use it; because it is not a winning argument. But let me test your reasoning skill and honesty about Lampadosa so you can understand where I’m coming from. So, tell me: why are those leaving the country predominantly from ethnic Tigrigna? Why do the “victims” of the regime end-up being the backbone of their “tormentors” once in the West? Why are Eritreans dying at the coasts of Lampadosa not at the coasts of Madagascar? Why are Eritreans dying at Sinai desert and not at Kalahari desert. If the problem is the PFDJ regime why are Eritreans traveling beyond Sudan, Ethiopia and Djibouti trekking in one direction (West)? Why are the West taking young Eritreans from the Eritrean border? And I don’t believe you have honest answers for these questions. I hope you got my drift.

    • haile

      Semere Tesfay

      oh man, you drive a hard bargain!!! Despite making blasphemous observation against the dead Eritrean children, mothers and youth that perished at sea, by retorting “why didn’t they stop in Sudan, Ethiopia…” Well, I give you that you sound ever slightly more discerning than the dHur and gesreT dictator IA who bluntly called the them “thieves”. You also swiped at the legitimate call for the dictator to leave as a result of the tragedy, his regime’s role in causing it and his handling of the aftermath, by calling those who raise it as “not smart”. Let me tell you in point blank that may be Mengistu has outdone you slightly in this case for charging mothers for bullets with which he shot their children. But, don’t worry, the system to which you’re up to protect from justice seekers did actually exceed Mengistu in other forms of sadism and brutality. I said you drive hard bargain, noting your expectation that PFDJ enabler would walk the streets with their heads up once this dirty system of child killers are disposed of. That surprised me a lot, because as a matter of fact, I find it the mother of jokes to be lined up as an Eritrean with those having your kind of bloody mindedness towards the issues of our people. It is a real joke.

      Mind you, also that in both of your replies to serray, you only had to specific missions to get across:

      1: To paint the Eritrean justice seeking communities with one brush, deny the fact that they have literally turned the diaspora a no go for PFDJ and are taking the battle to the dictators hideout. In stead you wish to lie here by pretending that the weakest groups in the opposition spectrum are the only opposition and this justify for people to “go to PFDJ”. Those who go to PFDJ today have no option, we know them. They are people who are incapable of being seen to oppose but fully curse the dictator — surprise that actually what dictatorship is, forcing people to follow you.

      2: To white wash PFDJ culpability in deaths of thousands of Eritreans who died trying to find a safe haven. You made such a pathetic case against these victims by implying that they were economic migrants. That is shameless and sick in your part. As they say temen mEnti kebdu yKeyd Bkebdu, I know the situation in Eritrea, I know every parent can’t wait to SAFELY exit their child that is turning 16/17 out of the country, the life there is so oppressive, so hopeless, so dark that I sometimes suspect it is done purposely to drive out the population. Yet, you are acting an enabler here and once the gesreT and dhur animalistic regime is overthrown, you have smartly paid your deposit by way of ha…btw I oppose the PFDJ. You wish..zeAKlen Thinen, Nbealemariam ybla… so belated opposition if you ask me.

      In the end, one of two things will happen: either you and the regime will have your day where Eritreans are depopulated the rest killed off or massacred, whatever the final objective is, OR Eritreans will fight back and save themselves. If you’re into movie, always the bad guys lose and if you’re into reality well it is so foolhardy to try to gang up against the PEOPLE. The latter is an ocean and would swallow you alive.

      Peace

      P.S. Here is a recently released movie trailer, while we are talking in the subject:

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=67SSOrS5CBg

    • Jo

      Hey Semere,

      Well done! after all there is at least one sensible person in here. People, specially, the likes of Serray and Amanuel Hidrat, I wonder, if they are so dismissive of anything that doesn’t fit in their scheme now, how dismissive they are going to be when they attain what they are longing for? Shouldn’t we all aspire for inclusiveness and common good? Can we afford to marginalize and alienate people who disagree with us? Can we afford to let, the wheel of vendetta, spin endlessly? For what reason? You are complaining and whining about the existing system in Eritrea, sorry!!! but you don’t seem any different to me. To me, the likes of you and those who are in the government are like the “Darlington pair” to borrow a term from electronics, feeding each other hate and amplifying it towards the whole society. Enough with your hate mongering.

      Serray, please don’t let the unrealistic “smart…smart” and “ajoKha…ajoKha” cheer that you get in this room get in your head. I can not believe the moderators of this room even allowed you to use the vulgar terms you used in your article, but as long as it is to bash the GoE, I guess, everything goes, huh? But one question, you having said, “Finally, about calling the pfdj and ypfdj dogs with rabies, or whores, it is the picture of them I have on my mind. Give me time, I will come up with something even better… bloodsucking parasites…mindless robots…just to name a few of the candidates.”, all that just because the GoE went to Russia, what kind of picture do you paint of you or the opposition who went to Ethiopia? Can you tell us how far you had to pull your skirt up? Never mind, I don’t want to see or hear how perverted your imagination could be. All I am trying to do here is to make a point that what ever you are doing is fruitless. About coup, I can only say is there any country in the world that have gone through a coup, that have managed to have a stable government and no reoccurring problems?

      Amanuel Hidrat, with all due respect, after reading what you wrote about Melles (God bless his soul!) i can’t help but question your integrity or moral values, understanding of human rights and democracy. Is your stand in human rights country specific? don’t you think human rights is a universal issue and we should hold responsible all violators wether they are in Eritrea or elsewhere in the world? I can’t wait to see what you are going to write about Mugabe; by the way, have his people contacted to write his eulogy?

      Serray and Amanuel, my intention is not to be disrespectful, but to shade some light what regular people like myself could infer from your writings. You have been given a great gift to reach so many with the power of pen without even leaving your sit, use it to sow unity and love and the rest is details. Respecting others will win you good friends, to be arrogant and have unrealistic ambitions will poison your mind and corrupt your soul. Please, for the sake of us all, snap out form the mind set of hate and revenge that so many of you have been trapped in.

      If I misread your articles, with apologies, I will stand corrected.

      Jo

  • Amanul9

    Selam Saay,

    I am pulling back to the top our previous thread for purposes others to engage to the subject we were debating. First and foremost thank you for the link. A lot of information pertinent as to how the legal framework of Au works, and the instruments and policies concerning unconstitutional changes. The author indicate in many instances conflicts in the articles of the charter (articles of constitutive act) and the PSC protocols.He criticized AU of failing to have a nuanced policy. In general the author made an interesting argument on the discrepancies of certain articles and lack of clear definitions on certain terms and phrase like “serious threat” and “legitimate order.”

    In any case, in light the OAU’s inability to react to a changing international system and to effectively engage against Humanitarian violations ,a new organization AU was created. They started to realize OAU’s principle “the principle of sovereignty and non-interference often ignores case of grave human right violations. The gradual shift of the doctrine of AU from non-interference to no-indifference and humanitarian intervention is a step forward in the right direction. It is on the bases of these new development and change of policy that I call IGAD to act on the human right violator and unruling regime of Asmara (refer to my article “Leadership and the geopolitics of the horn”).

    Even if the AU policy is against coup that overthrow a legitimate government, the Eritrean regime is not an elected government by any standard since they came from the jungle. So there are many reasons to argue against this tyrannical regime and destabilizing agent of terrorism. And If like “Wedi Ali” come to exist and do the job (remove the despot) I have no doubt that the AU will go along. IGAD has the leverage in AU to argue along our forces of change.The issue is do we have like him in store. Let us work our home work in the international stage to educate the international community that in Eritrea coup is a possible instrument for change as there is no way for peaceful resistance inside Eritrea. If we take this as a strategy sooner or later they will be on our side rather on the side of the isolated and “hermit kingdom” of the horn to borrow Michela Wrong. So in my view there are good and bad coups depending on the circumstances and aims they purported.

    Amanuel Hidrat

    • saay7

      Selamat Emma: Thanks for the follow-through. Here are points where we agree and disagree:

      Agree: there are good coups and bad coups. When I explained my support for a “democratic coup”, it is fair to say you were skeptical and I am glad we are in agreement on the subject.

      Disagree: I do not think IGAD is a cohesive group–and the impressions that follows of IGAD (Ethiopia, Sudan, Kenya, Uganda, Somalia, Djibouti) as if it is a partnership of equals is not right. I would say only Ethiopia, Sudan and Djibouti see themselves as stakeholders in matters Eritrean and, of the three, the intensity of stakeholder entitlement is most pronounced in Ethiopia and, given our complicated history, what it favors results in knee-jerk opposition by a large segment of our population.

      Disagree: AU’s policy on coup d’etats, as written now, is not nuanced. It condemns all coup d’etats regardless of whether they are replacing a duly elected government or a dictatorship. This is because the AU is made up of dictatorships not committed to liberal democracy. Recall that, as of today, only 3 African countries have ratified the AU’s Charter on Democracy.

      saay

  • Araya

    Aman the Ethiopian government is inviting Eritrean intellectuals
    I mean opportunists; are you going to Addis Abeba again? You are already contaminated; Why not, go take the FEZAZ Weyane money.

    • Amanul9

      Araya,
      Do you know our traditional adage says “zemam hanti derfu”. Always you are! Is Amanuel getting benefit from Ethiopia or “Araya and his family” who travel back and forth often to do his business in the country he despises. Look to your face what you are saying and what benefit you are getting from Ethiopia yourself and your family. It is shame to you.

      Amanuel Hidrat

      • Araya

        Aman. My family own business and helped the country build brick by brick. Ethiopia and Ethiopians better be thankful for our services. It is not like I accepted a charity from the weyane like you have done.
        I am assuming you are disappointed by the TPLF cancellation of
        the free trip. Don’t you fell a little shame and dishonor when you accept a
        free staff from the enemy of your people?

        • Kim Hanna

          Dear Araya, Araya, Araya!
          Don’t you feel just a little bit ashamed to help the ENEMY of your people be strong by helping them build brick by brick.
          Do you think your family members share your view? When you go to Addis ,do you tell your enemies how you truly feel or just sizzle in your own blind hatred? This is from one of those ungracious Ethiopians.
          I hope you are just lying about everything. There is a disease like that you know.
          KH

  • Amanuel Hidrat

    Dear Serray,

    Your rebuttal is impressive not only in substance but also in the way you conveyed it. Semere and his likes are stuck with the regime and I don’t think you could convince him what ever facts you lay down. Because he is doing it purposely. So don’t take him serious. You can’t win against arrogance in a debate. You can win if you make the oppressed Eritrean rise up and overwhelm them in the confrontation and regain their rights. So focus in teaching the public and feed them the right stuff to unite and challenge the regime.

    Amanuel Hidrat

  • Rodab

    Good rebuttal Semere.
    My head is a little too slow today so could you elaborate on what you meant by “And I suppose, like every poor third world country, Eritrea could only recycle (sleep with) its old clients/abusers”? Are you refering to Russia (they were our former abusers)? Is that a sarcastic statement or what? And is the relation between two countries of the colonized and the colonizer destined to the way you described? A little help please…
    Anywho…one thing the PFDJ is at disadvantage with regards to its foreign relations is that it is prone to criticizim either way, when absent and when present – and no one but the regime brought this on itself. When absent, obviously it is lashed at as isolated and when it seemingly takes initiatives [on foreign relations], the move is seen in suspesion and reluctancy. This is due to the regime’s habitual tactical moves taken not out of Eritrea’s best interests but for personal grudges and spites. PIA’s state visit to Iran, a country we never had/have economic relations with, and publicly stating Iran has the right to nuclear use can be mentioned to that effect. And of course many more such illustrations exist.

  • saay7

    Hi Emma:

    Please read this piece from Vanderbilt University on “The Club of the incumbents” at the AU:
    http://www.vanderbilt.edu/jotl/manage/wp-content/uploads/omorogbe-cr.pdf

    Just think: if The next Wed Ali succeeds, the AU will consider the coup leader as illegitimate. And judging on his legitimacy will be people like Campaore and Idris and Museveni. The AU defines a coup as extra-constitutional even if the person doing the overthrowing is doing it because the incumbent is unconstitutional. The AU is a joke: only 3 African countries have adopted its Charter on Democracy. 3 out of 54.

    saay

    • Amanuel Hidrat

      Selam Saay and Ermias,

      Saay – Just from the glance to the intro, it looks very interesting paper. Let me read it and get back to you. Thanks for the link.

      Ermais – Yes I scratched my head to hear from a sensible person (Rodab) to say that Issayas is a legitimate regime. Legitimacy is only measured if one is elected by the people based on institutional democratic process. In fact Rodab showed relectance to call him what he is. Whether a regime is legitimate or illegitimate call it the way it behaves.

      Regarding the coup, this is my take: Anyone who came to power without election or without harvesting votes in a democratic process (popular support) from his/her own population is always illegitimate government (regime). Legitmacy by international community reflects only respecting “national sovereignty” leaving the nature of government to be determined by the people of any particular nation. Legitimacy of any nation on the eye of international community and legitimacy in the eye of its own people are two different things – only to be measured by different values and norms. So Rodab may be putting himself on the pedestal of international norm – meaning taking himself out of the loop of the Eritrean people request. Just speculating.

      Amanuel Hidrat

  • Hagos

    Tigray’s Alleged Inferiority Complex. Interesting article on the real causes of the border war.

    http://www.madote.com/2014/02/tigrays-alleged-inferiority-complex.html

  • Ermias

    Great analysis Aman. One thing I like to ask you for the sake of discussion is when you say:

    “As to the policy of the AU which says “stand with the legitimately elected leaders” is a right policy in my opinion…”

    How about in the case of IA? Rodab strongly argues that IA is legitimate hence he consistently refers to him as PIA? Do you think IA is legitimate? If so, then a coup would not be justified but Serray and others myself included think that a coup is the only way any change can come about.

    P.S. I like how you still use NB, I haven’t used it since high school.

  • AboyTesfay

    Serray, good to see you. I see from old awate Mr tsase, nitricc, i wedieri (osman?). Where are the rest?:)

  • Amanul9

    Merhaba Serray,

    Welcome back. We have missed your input for sometime. Good to see you back.

    Amanuel Hidrat

    • Serray

      Thanks Aman. Happy to be back.

  • Saba

    One minute journey in the minds of Awate Team: a softer interview( more softer than this) of our Prime Minister is coming soon:) We just trying to build a personal connection with him so that we will know where to place the pillows to make him comfortable, as we did with PMMZ. So far we tried everything but he said that he does not have a good vibe.

  • Nitricc

    A response TO GEDAB NEWS AT TESFA NEWS; FROM MOI?
    CONFUSING! LOL
    Eritrea: Normalisation Cannot Come Before Removal of Occupation
    By MOI,
    A wild story has been circulating in the past weeks alleging that President Isaias is “desperately looking for immediate normalization” with Ethiopia and had nudged, “with a sense of urgency”, President Al-Bashir to deliver on this “cardinal mission” during his visit to the country in mid-January.
    The story delves into the itinerary of President Beshir’s visit, digressing into a graphic description of the “picturesque Filfil-Solomuna road” and narrates “tidbits of a purported chat” that both Presidents had “during a boat trip to some Islands in the Dahlak Archipelago”. Thus we are told: “a trustworthy source indicated that, several times during the journey, Isaias Afwerki asked Al Bashir, ‘do you see any Israeli bases here’?”
    The creative narration, the montage photo of both Presidents as well as the frequent references to “our diplomatic sources in the Sudan” have been carefully choreographed in order to imbue the story with some degree of authenticity and credibility. But we know full well the identities and modus operandi of those engaged in frantic disinformation and smear campaigns against Eritrea for ulterior motives. And if one of their objectives was to spur mutual acrimony and drive a wedge between Eritrea and the Sudan through fabricated stories, we can only tell them to wallow in their pipe dream.
    In as far as the real facts and Eritrea’s firm position are concerned; we underline, for the umpteenth time, the following:
    1. Eritrea has not asked, and cannot ask, the good offices of President Beshir or any other intermediary to facilitate “normalization with Ethiopia”. The interests of regional peace and security cannot be enhanced by dwelling on imaginary scenarios and those who harbor such diversionary dreams should come to their senses to focus on real issues.
    2. For several years now, various intelligence agencies have been fervently cultivating fabricated stories on the “presence of military bases of Israel and Iran in Eritrea’s Dahlak Islands”. The utter absurdity and fallacy of these allegations are too palpable to merit elaboration here. But the stories are repeated ad nuseum for purposes of disinformation as part and parcel of the invective campaigns against Eritrea.
    In the event, we can only reiterate that Eritrea’s land will never be mortgaged for any military base. In the same token, Eritrea has not and does not need to orchestrate pompous visits for President Beshir or any other Head of State to refute the phantom presence of Israeli or Iranian military bases in its territory.

    • saay7

      Hey Nitricc:

      You know how you call yourself Mr. Truth-Teller? Now compare two articles:

      On February 21, Awate Team wrote http://awate.com/from-moscow-with-lies-yemane-gebreab-interview/. Then, just so there is no “oh, really, I didn’t know!” explanations from websites who have made stealing, plagiarism a habit, (and from those of you who support their thievery last time) it placed this as a footer: “Copyright 2014 Awate.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without written consent.”

      On February 22, Tesfa News published this http://www.tesfanews.net/yemane-gebreabs-interview-with-russia-today/. They are so lazy with their stealing that an easy editorial trick we used to trap them (use only Yemane’s first name, use both first name and last name of the interviewer) caught them. In their footer, they wrote “outsourced from awate.com”, whatever that means.

      Now, Mr. Truth, give your verdict. Use any plagiarism software, and it will tell you they stole 90% of our product. I told you that your president, Isaias Afwerki, hasn’t had an original idea since 1969. It turns out that his young lieutenants at Tefash News are just as bankrupt:))

      saay

      • Saba

        Ha ha kilite gohalu hamikushti sinkom:)

      • Nitricc

        SAAY, the article I posted last night throw a monkey wrench to everything I have done in preparation going at it with you. I just don’t know how to approach it. It is very Strange and weird at the least. Why would they respond and respond in a strange way for something it is not true and something it did not happen? Huh!
        Let me sleep on the article of tesfa news and I will have my say. The good thing is there is a way out of this; can plea the 5th? Lol
        One way or the other I will address it.

  • Serray

    Selamat,

    Good interview specially coming from the Russians. It could have used some prodding but it still showed the regime’s lies and its undisciplined nature. I love the way the interviewer introduced shaebia’s eritrea as a forgotten nation. I guess something is lost in translation; he probably meant ignored, not forgotten. This fits the picture of shaebia ruled nation perfectly. Eritrea under isaias is like an ugly and obnoxious whore who goes to a formal party and is avoided and ignored by every self-respecting guest. So she does what it does best, hike its skirts high and hope the low lives are noticing.

    Here is a proof of regime’s whorish diplomacy? Yemane said,

    “We and the region, in our view, suffered from the absence of Russia for a quarter of century…This absence had a damaging effect on the region”.

    Only a desperate and undisciplined lier will miss a country that flooded the region with arms – first by arming and touting somalia to invade ethiopia and then, lo and behold, switching sides in the middle of the war and arming dergi to a tune of billion of dollars – including weapons of mass destruction, helping mengistu not just defeat the somalis but almost crush the eritrean struggle. Eritrea still bears the scars of Russia’s “engagement” and yemane, the other street whore who parades the streets of world capitals prostituting our nation tells the Russians their “absence had a damaging effect on the region”. If this is not the worst and cheapest way of prostituting a nation, then nothing is.

    But what makes the regime’s whorish approach to diplomacy unique is this illusion that there are johns out there interested in its old, ugly, rotting system. They say some things learned and some things are innate; a system led by such repulsive liars like isaias from its birth can only be what it is because it was born that way. When I think of shaebia, when I hear isaias, yemane or any of its minions, I am grateful that death exists and it is starring most of them right in the eye as we speak. Isaias said in his last interview that “ginbar” will be with us forever. No, dummy, shaebia is not a zombie; even though its soul has died long ago, your rotting liver is the only thing standing between it and its eternal death.

    The latest whorish diplomatic offense seems to be aimed at finding new sugar daddies. Like a battered and spent old whore, shaebia is making rounds begging its old abusers to come back. The vomits and the dogs with rabies (the pfdj and the ypfdj) in diaspora, blissfully ignorant of history (or even what they said yesterday), are happily cheering the regime’s latest diplomatic offensive as independence from the west when in fact it nothing more than the regime’s final gasps.

    On unrelated topic, on her latest piece, Michela Wrong said that Isaias was supposed to be in the MoI building for a meeting on the day Wedi Ali took over the place temporarily. If true, this changes everything. They were not there to ask isaias to implement the constitution or free the prisoners, they were there to do it over his dead body. I don’t know about you but I like the sound of that. Here is the link,

    http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2014/02/20/definitely_going_to_blow_eritrea_africas_hermit_kingdom

    • Ermias

      Serray. Okay hold it mister. Where have you been? Some of us have been making a fool out of ourselves and we left no doubt for anyone to see about our ignorance. If you and your likes show up more often, then the novices like me can just simply watch and learn. That helps keep this forum cleaner and more tolerable. I am on the bench now. You said it all immaculately.

      • Serray

        Selamat Ermias,

        You guys are holding the place fine. Between you, Hayat, Amanuel etc…what needs to be said is being said. The reason you think you are making a fool of yourself is because you are dealing with nitrcc. He is one person I know who thinks the anonymity forums like this offer protects him from his real self.

    • AOsman

      Selamat Serray,

      The information on the planned meeting at MOI is not new, either Awate or Assenna had reported it at the time. Information was leaked in advance and this prevented the arrest of DIA, if you remember the story of the day was that Wedi Ali wanted to target DIA residence, but some of the middle men managed to cool him down…the rest is history.

      Regards
      AOsman

    • Araya

      This person is sick to the head. Who talks in a reference of a whore? The author must have some experience have it his way with hookers; if not who talks that way?

      It is very true; Africa is abused by the USA in the absence of a balancing power of Russia to the lonely super power USA. How is this true statement translated to a whore?

      I am just glad death exists, so, worthless and liars people like will die off. How can you deny that Africa is raped in a broad day light by US because the absences of a balancing act of another super power? It is very, very true. When you are YG’s slave anything is possible .

    • saay7

      Hey Serray: Welcome back, it’s good to see you.

      I would like you to consider this from a different angle. Ukraine, Uganda. Political actors from the two countries have indicated that Russia is a better model than the European Union or the United States because, unlike the latter two, Russia actually practices the “non-interference in the internal affairs” of other nations, whereas the US and EU selectively interfere in the internal affairs of other nations. That is: they won’t criticize Saudi Arabia’s brutal human rights violations, but they are relentless when it comes to nations not in their sphere of influence.

      Clearly, the Isaiasists, for their own self-preservation, consider Russia and China as their natural allies: governments who are about “doing business” irrespective of how brutish you are in the treatement of your own citizens because they, themselves, have a long history of treating their citizens badly.

      The question is: how do we advanced the alternative view–that rights are universal, that the US is an ally to universal rights–when it has been limping along on that specific issue since 2001 and when it has been very selective about which countries it would harangue and which ones it will leave alone?

      saay

      • Ermias

        Saay, with all due respect, I think you are twisting a bit too much. Serray made no mention of the EU or the US. He simply stated that yemane’s claim that the Russians have been dearly missed in the Horn of Africa is a blatant lie. You made no mention of whether you agree with that or not. You guys did us a great service in bringing that interview translated. Thank you! Now let’s give Serray the credit he deserves for breaking it down so eloquently. No need to find holes in his analysis.

        • saay7

          Ermias: The intent was to expand the discussion further because if anyone can, it is the scary-smart Serray. Apology accepted.

      • Serray

        Selamat Sal,

        Same here…sometimes I forget reading and running counts as absence.

        About Russia and china, if you really think about it, these two are notorious interferers; look at the poor Ukrainian president; he listened to them and now he is running and hiding. First thing is to remove the illusion of “noninterference” by Russia or China. When you fall under their influence, they are like suicide pills. They give you too much of things that will eventually kill you. Think of all the countries the Russians and Chinese “non-interfered” and are dead now….the whole Eastern bloc and the little tyrants like mengstu and saide barre and now Assad of Syria, armed to the teeth by Russia.

        The regime has started to eat itself like a wounded hyena. Begging for close ties with Russia and china and telling them I miss you sound desperate.

        Araya,

        You are right, I have to apologize to the whores. You know, I laughed when isaias said ginbar will be with us forever in his last interview. I thought of people like you, ypfdjs, the true imitation of pfdj, going to eritrea and ruling after the liver of every last one them exploded. A regime approaching its end hoping vacationing kids will carry its legacy; what a pathetic end.

        • saay7

          Selamat Serray:

          But isn’t the entire UN one that is more like Russia and China and less than EU and US? By that I mean the whole world is structured now in such a way that the most important thing is a border: any crime that is committed by a tyrant within his border is tolerated, endured, encouraged (national soverignty); it is only when one tyrant crosses the border that the whole UN rises up to condemn and censure.

          Next up, the African Union. Here’s a club of mostly megalomaniac tyrants who got to power by stealing elections or staging coups. Consider its policy against regimes that come to power through coup d’etat. Imagine: Musevini, Campaore, Al Bashir, Idris Deby, Yahya Jimmie–all Africans who assumed power in a coup are going to sit in judgement of the new coup engineers in Egypt. What do you think of that?

          saay

          • Amanuel Hidrat

            Hi Saay,

            The carrot and stick policy is always on the West (US & EU). Of course when the west want to install their puppets, there is always a reflexive reaction by Russia and China using their veto power more often after the cold war. Look how US and EU interfere in Ukraine right inside the city to guide the protest. If you recall the conversation of the US Assistant secretary of State Victoria Nuland and US Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt, which was intercepted – was indeed pure meddling into the affairs of Ukrainian people. Read the link below.

            http://wikkorg.wordpress.com/2014/02/08/intercepted-phone-call-shows-us-meddling-in-ukraine/

            So for good or bad the West are more aggressive to interfere into the affairs of others. And by the way the UN is dictated by the west. They are tolerant or intolerant to tyrants depending on their interest, and not on the value they claim to advocate. Take the examples of African leaders you mention in your comment.

            As to the policy of the AU which says “stand with the legitimately elected leaders” is a right policy in my opinion and good exercise of abiding to the rule of law, especially to our continent, yet to learn the institutional democratic process.

            Sal, in Egypt if General Sissi came to power in the coming formal election, it will be the continuation of Mubarek..And as such the revolution will be like a foiled coup (not in content but in appearance), only the revolution which took three years to survive without legitimacy on and off, might give it different look. In the finally analysis it will be a foiled revolution surround to the Military force. We shall see how it will end anyway.

            NB – This argument must not in any shape or form infer my support to Russia and China’s foreign policy. It is just to make straight-for grab the truth on the ground in regard to interference. There are good interference and bad interference – a subject of its own and great importance for the future.

            Amanuel Hidrat

          • Serray

            Selamat Sal,

            About the freaks judging freaks, it is funny how the african strongmen grandfathered themselves. In egypt’s case, the rulers are rushing to have an election to get a pass. To be meaningful, this requirement should raise the standard higher to cover the human rights records of the vanquished regime. If it is a regime of cannibals like ours, this policy is a joke. How can you change a regime like ours without a coup? The idiots at AU should drop the coup part and stress the record of the regime overthrown. As long as the rule of law is not supreme in a nation, any means of shoving brutal and inhuman regimes like shaebia must not only be permitted but encouraged.

            If that happens, it will be good for african people. The only way you can rein in on blood thirsty and deeply corrupt regimes like shaebia is by making them look behind their shoulders for bigger powers with bigger stick. Discouraging coup in countries like eritrea is a death sentence on the people…and bad for africa. Shaebia has spilled more african blood than any african nation since it became a regime. Shaebia’s bloody hands are allover sudan (both south and north) Djibouti and Somalia. This is in addition to hit jobs they do for rich arab rulers. A regime that disrespects its citizens is by definition a destabilizing force and making a blanket policy about coup hurts african than not having one.

    • Semere Tesfai

      Serray:

      You are known for calling Isaias Afewerki “dummy”; and that’s fine. And today you’ve gone a step further: you are calling the whole PFDJ/YPFDJ crowd in the Diaspora “idiots” “the vomits and the dogs with rabies”. Well, I hate to say this, but the only “smart” thing I have seen in you is, using a pen name. Not only your characterization of the whole PFDJ camp is wrong, but also, I don’t believe you can defend your words in a broad daylight. And I’m more than happy to be proven wrong.

      Having said that, I’m not here to defend the PFDJ crowd or PFDJ leaders, but to defend common decency.You said “The latest whorish diplomatic offense seems to be aimed at finding new sugar daddies. Like a battered and spent old whore, shaebia is making rounds begging its old abusers to come back. The vomits and the dogs with rabies (the pfdj and the ypfdj) in diaspora, blissfully ignorant of history (or even what they said yesterday), are happily cheering the regime’s latest diplomatic offensive as independence from the west when in fact it nothing more than the regime’s final gasps. Only a desperate and undisciplined lier will miss a country that flooded the region with arms…. Eritrea still bears the scars of Russia’s “engagement” and yemane, the other street whore who parades the streets of world capitals prostituting our nation tells the Russians their “absence had a damaging effect on the region”. If this is not the worst and cheapest way of prostituting a nation, then nothing is.”

      Well, Serray, true Eritrea has been “brutally battered and abused” by many powers – yes from the North, from the South, from the East and from the West. And I suppose, like every poor third world country, Eritrea could only recycle (sleep with) its old clients/abusers. And I know exactly which old client/abuser you want Eritrea to “prostitute” to. But I don’t want to put words in your mouth. So, impress me – put yourself in the shoes of the “dummy” and his “dogs with rabies” – and tell me, what Eritrea’s correct policy ought to be. Smart as you are, one would expect from your caliber to tell us a magic policy that could perfectly satisfy the concerned stakeholders to our North and to our South. But you know what – you can’t. The reason: you being a disciple of YG says it all. And YG brand – “Shaebia’s bloody hands are allover….. This is in addition to hit jobs they (PFDJ) do for rich arab rulers.” type Islam-phobic attitude is not going to bring us a balanced, smart-policy that would guarantee Eritrea a sustainable peace with its neighbors. Therefore, you don’t have a bright idea; you’re just whining.

      Again you said, “How can you change a regime like ours without a coup? The idiots at AU
      should drop the coup part and stress the record of the regime overthrown.The only way you can rein in on blood thirsty and deeply corrupt regimes like shaebia is by making them look behind their shoulders for bigger powers with bigger stick. Discouraging coup in countries like eritrea is a death sentence on the people…and bad for africa.”

      Really? How could you reconcile “democracy” and “coup d’etat”? How could you reconcile “sovereignty” and call for “foreign intervention”? How could you reconcile being “tool of foreign powers” and “national pride/stability”? But again, what is the point of asking you, when you don’t have the burden/stamina to defend your position outside the shadows of darkness.

      But if you care to know, there is one thing that has never changed in Africa since the days of slavery: vengeful/drooling locals willing to sell/kill their neighbors/people to serve foreign interests. And the more things change in the world, the more the slave mentality of Africans stayed the same. And instead of believing on your ability and the ability of your people to make changes, your mental belief in foreign powers to solve your problem, is a testament to that.

      • Amanuel Hidrat

        Hi Semere Tesfay,

        I can’t help it, but your comment gives me the impression of “Baby sitting-gate” to Issayas and his entourages. And I am sure he will give you the signal of wink and nod for a job well done. On the other hand your attitude of choice also seems let us stop bridging, but if it happens we will cross the bridge definitely when we see it on the horizon. Am I right Semere? I sincerely believe that you are better than that.

        Amanuel Hidrat

      • Serray

        Semere,

        First, I am calling Isaias dummy for brevity. He is a leader of a party that enslaves its youth and works hand and glove with human traffickers to sell them (or their organs) to the highest bidder – mouthful, don’t you think?

        I made two damaging statements above. If I go by your latest piece, you think the youth are not enslaved but defending the country and the reason they are fleeing is because they are brain washed by ghedli generation opposition. This position of yours is based on sequential lies. Even though there is an international court decision that the dummy himself accepted (without any reservation) that he ignited the war, you replaced this fact by a fiction whose only source of authority is you and your experience. Unlike you, I would rather base my position on transparent facts than your “trust me, I know what I am saying” type innuendo. Based on my fact centered position, eritrean youth are not taken from their parents at tender age to defend the country (because all wars since shaebia came to power WERE ignited by shaebia) but to serve shaebia bosses as slaves without any rights and to break theirs and their parents spirit. Second,

        What I find dismaying about people like you (ex-tegadelti) is the perverted view you adapt about the superiority of land, about a country that exists above and beyond the welfare of its people. You tell us that at one time you went to medda to fight for your peoples freedom but look at you now, you are justifying a policy that completely strips the young of their freedom because a piece of land is held by woyanes and you are okay with it. Even worse, when the youth had enough and flee, you, a man who went to medda long before he was made a slave, completely and shamefully forget that the young are fighting for their freedom by running away from a future of slavery shaebia has in store for them.

        You wrote, “Well, Serray, true Eritrea has been “brutally battered and abused” by many powers – yes from the North, from the South, from the East and from the West”. All repressive regimes share one thing in common; they fix the world as their enemy. In 1996, the First Lady of america visited eritrea; isaias supported Bush’s invasion of Iraq; in 2003, the regime offered a military base to america but when it refused the regime and you guys changed your tune. I wonder what would you be saying now if americans have a military base in Asseb. Listen, since 1991, eritrea’s abuse and its pariah status got to do 100 percent with shaebia’s insatiable appetite for blood and corruption. Scapegoating the world might work for the dogs with rabies, not for me, the buck stops with shaebia and isaias.

        Nothing that is happening to eritrea was inevitable; from lampadosa to underground prisons and slavery; the mess we are starring at was planned and executed by shaebia regime. Unlike you, I don’t turn fatalistic trying to explain why things are happening the way they do; I hold responsible those who had unlimited power to do what they please for the last 23 years and chose to follow the road of destruction. I have no illusion about the source of our misery and that is where you and I defer. By the way, the regime cheerleaders, the dogs with rabies, were happy with your latest article; you did two things they like very much: you hold an opposition with absolutely, completely, no power inside or outside the country responsible for the mess, and you killed it for them.

        You asked me what should the correct policy be for eritrea; easy, 23 years is a long time to evaluate the effectiveness (or lack thereof) of any government. Shaebia has proved beyond any shadow of doubt that it is incapable of leading a nation at peace. The correct policy is to implement the constitution and disband shaebia as a governing body and give back all its property to its rightful owners, the eritrean people. And that leads me to another insane statement you made regarding AU position on coup. Isaias has said a number of times that he intends to stay in power for decades. Even worse, the regime has made it clear that it has no intention of giving power to the people. Meaning, the only way change can come to eritrea is by force, a coup or some sort of uprising. If the past is any guide, nobody is clambering to help us; the ethiopians have tasted life without us and they are enjoying it. When I criticize the AU for their half assed policy of sitting in judgement of a coup, I based it on two factors: first, most of them came to power through coup and second, and most important, that countries like ours led by unelected, illegitimate, ignorant regimes have no ability for change other than a coup or an uprising. Since you disagree, tell us how change is coming to eritrea.

        I know a big chunk of what I wrote is based as much on your last article as it is on your comment here, I hope you don’t mind. Finally, about calling the pfdj and ypfdj dogs with rabies, or whores, it is the picture of them I have on my mind. Give me time, I will come up with something even better… bloodsucking parasites…mindless robots…just to name a few of the candidates.

  • Dawit

    You are speaking as if you owned this website 😉 You said “It still is an Eritrean website, and it does not mean you have a free pass to come all the way here and puff…” , making yourself the decider in chief on who should comment on this site.

  • Guest

    [Moderator: Anatsu, watch your own language before chastising others.]

    This is for the Horizons and other Ethiopians,
    Here is the deal, Just because this website happens to be a country, Government and President basher by design; and just because most of the forum members happened to have invested something in Ethiopia and Tigray, hence have developed some sense of inferiority or subordinatio to Ethiopia, it still is an Eritrean website, and it doesnt mean you have a free pass to come all the way here and puff and rain your Ethiopian xxxxx here. Sure, your comming here could be hospitable to some extent and all, and may be this is people to people thing, but rememeber your country is the cause of everything bad in Eritrea. And curb your mouth or hand ot brain from running away from you.
    Stick with talk about music or something

  • Papillonn

    Eritrea is left out un-invited by the White House come August 2014. Isaias is one sadist pathetic loser.

  • Saba

    This is the daily meat by awate team to the cyber opposition because they do not have their own to say. Do you need AWAZE?

  • Saied A. Idris

    Mr Yemane has to present his answers diplomatically and less harshly as he did. He always keeps in mind what his boss ‘s reply would be if Issayas was in his place, his answers were neutral and peaceful and rendered E.P.L.F policy as harmless. Yemane took Africa as a whole as an excuse for not willing to be industrialized (whenever African nations became independent), just talking about something else, so as to shift the attention away from Eritrean situation. I bet it was hard for him to coop with the questioning

  • Pingback: Yemane Gebreab's Interview with Russia Today Arabic Television | TesfaNews()

  • Horizon

    Why a small and poor country like Eritrea would choose the most powerful country in the world (the USA) for an enemy, is a mystery. Is this not equivalent to not knowing ones capabilities? The Eritrean government official reminded me of Peter Sellers film “The mouse that roared”.

    Sometimes it is difficult to understand what they are trying to prove. In this intertwined world, the worst politics is confronting the only super power, especially from a weak position. These people have been blinded by too much egoism that simply they do not care about the interest of their people.

    Even if there are more refugees from Ethiopia compared to Eritrea, which I doubt, this does not make the flight of young Eritreans a minor issue. Accusing the US for immigration of Eritreans and human trafficking is utter nonsense. Of course, one of the obligations of a politician is to tell lies for the sake of the regime he/she represents, and this person is very good at it.

    • Hayat Adem

      When you are in a slippery road and sheer-dropping at that, you would stretch your hands and grab anything, even the spider web, to postpone the crush day. The only magic card I see for them to continue beyond this is doing something with the Ethiopians. They can put maximum diplomatic effort to revive a relationship with any big country, the Ethiopians can spoil it effortlessly. Let’s say, they earned some nodding from the Egyptians, a small harmless concession can be enough to win the Egypian heart for the Ethiopians, and Eritrea would be left in the cold freezing again. It is all futile.

      • Horizon

        For how long will this gambler’s mentally
        continue? They caused complete disruption of the life of the Eritrean society, and still
        they believe that they can recoup the losses and
        come out winners in the end. Two generations already lost for the most foolish
        reason one can imagine, and yet they remain so remorseless. They continue
        to be harbingers of the most unfortunate news, (continuation of the one man/one party dictatorship), while in front of their eyes, the country is becoming a failed
        state, and day by day, month by month and year by year, it is losing its young
        (its future). The type of country they are planning to create is simply
        difficult to imagine.
        Blinded by hate, they might even stand with Egypt against
        Ethiopia’s rights to use her rivers, thus forfeiting the chance to develop Eritrea’s
        economy using cheap electricity Ethiopia will be producing in the future, as Sudan,
        Kenya, and Djibouti are trying to do. On top of this, one should add the big market that is going to be created in the horn of Africa through integration of the economies of the countries of the region. Can Eritrea afford to remain outside this club of nations?

      • Guest

        Man, you are walking on thin ice here, with your continous call for mama Ethiopia.

    • ethiopia

      considering the dire situation in ethiopia, if the UN open a refuge camp in neighboring countries for Ethiopians and provides assistance including asylum to the western countries, half of ethiopians(45 million) will be refugees in 3 month.

      • Guest

        True even the late/current prime minister and the whole of TPLF whold have floked to that camp, in one day

      • Horizon

        Politics aside, do you really believe it? The majority of Ethiopians are economic immigrants, who are looking for a greener pasture. They are not running from an open ended military service, as most Eris are doing, or for not being able to practice their religion or assemble, etc. That is why the more than 100,000 Ethiopians who returned from the Saudi Arabia hell were more than happy to return to their country.
        I am not saying that Ethiopia is the Mecca of democracy, nor is the EPRDF/TPLF government an example of a democratic government. Far from that; but you can not compare the two governments. Many Eris would have liked to see a somewhat benevolent dictator than the one they have, because there is a chance it could improve somehow with time. Right or wrong, the Ethiopian government is trying to explain the shortage of democracy with the so called developmental state. Can the regime in Asmara say the same thing? No, it cannot. Therefore, do not compare two things that are moving in the opposite direction.

        • ethiopia

          i don’t know the people in north shewa and tigrai what they feel about eprdf/tplf government but if u ask the rest of ethiopians they will tell u , they feel like they r under minority ethnic apartheid rule .that makes the regime in ethiopia worst than any other regimes.
          160,000 ethiopians didn’t returned to ethiopia willingly , they deported,

        • Guest

          For a citizen of that hideous country who has been bleeding Eritrea, like forever, you open your mouth too wide in an Eritrean website. If you feel like talking about Eritrea, at least be true and tell your stinking woyanie to abide by law and leave Eritrea be.
          If you think you earned or deserved or chose to be friend of the Eritrean people enought to spend some of your time here in this forum, and also if you feel free to mok our national service, which by the way is what it is because of your stinky government, at least, now and then say something like “Ethiopia has not right to hold Eritrean territory” or something. Otherwise stick to none political issues or something.

  • Dawit

    FP has an interesting article entitled ‘Definitly Going to Blow’: “is Africa’s hermit kingdom heading toward a military coup?” , in which it talks, among others, about the interview Issayas had with local reporters, Forum for National Dialogue (Medrek?), and Forto.

    Here are excerpts from the article.

    For example talking about people like Salih Gadi, the article states

    Despite public mea culpas from former Isaias allies, ELF survivors of that fratricidal rebel war are quick to detect incipient arrogance from exiled EPLF cadres who, they argue, are now seeking to topple the unaccountable presidency they originally created.

    Speaking of the interview , FP states

    The dogged intransigence on display in the interview, staged during celebrations to mark his former rebel movement’s 1990 capture of the strategic port of Massawa, was typical of the man… who has moved, in many of his own citizens’ eyes, from heroic liberator to iron-fisted saboteur of Eritrean independence.

    The online Journal believes that Issays exhibits a hostile and warlike attitude.

    Isaias’s obduracy also sends an inadvertent message: If change in Eritrea cannot be achieved either peacefully or gradually, it must come about through violence.

  • haile

    Hello Awatitas,

    Yemane inviting the Russians to come and verify the truth rhymes with the Russian FM’s assertion in the press conference about the centrality of UN as a proper way venue to address international matters of peace and security (i.e. he is politely turning down this tired old tirick of PFDJ “come and see” while both UN mandated experts are refused entry: UNSC HR rap. and SEMG experts).

    Over to our sisters now…

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elFK3Fk7q-M

  • Tesfu, fight it out at Disqus. We don’t control registration 🙂

    • Tesfu

      Awate Moderator
      I won’t be boneheaded or cretinous Christian over name at Disqus.

  • said

    Eritrean sacrificed for the hope of joining enlightened nation , the liberator turned to be a
    nightmare and dictator , people are still fleeing their country in droves , in the past
    Eritrean refugees fleeing their homes were escaping the horrors of war and in the hope, as true in almost all similar circumstances, that they one day soon,as also true of civilians fleeing the ravages of wars, they would all go back to their homes and enjoy again their belongings, properties and rightful possessions, back to their fatherland. Many Eritrean are not of those who turn a blind eye and keep their mind closed in the face of obvious dire misery, oppressions and wrongdoing. The only game of politics became wide open door for injustice and violation. So DIA would become in charge of the nation and control its wealth, and he does what
    he wishes, and to play havocs with lives of people and he kills them without slightest justice fiction and flinch of remorse , and the people divides them ,others he coerce and buys them.
    And of those willing strong minded and hearts, he fill prisons with them, completely
    disregarding their human rights and basic justices in order for him to stay in power. But the cruel regime from day one has come to shut honourably voices, he intimidate, silence and eliminated the voice of patriotic and nationalist opposition and to push them into exile. The regime that has monopolized and dominated over everything. It does not give a dame or care listen to international opinion or reasonable voice. They remain defying and arrogant, True Honourable and dignified Eritrean and for those who remained loyal to their universal human
    rights and value, they have not betrayed the nation, and nation will not betray
    them. You are amongst honourable voices. Based on common goods, righteousness,
    respecting faith and rich culture and the public good. Eritrea should not be
    left to the tiny group of people of criminal mind.

    Today Eritrea face multiple basic challenge with no hope insight ,no aspiration to look forward, no jobs no flourishing farming, no small manufacturing, no tourist services, no personal
    security or, no peace. the youth, the pride and future of the country face Mass
    unemployment, dire poverty, very inadequate healthcare, unreformed and under-funded education, misery and all the rest – come to realise that the country’s structural problems are proven and beyond DIA capability and capacity to fix and solve problems ?

    Ruled by gangster tags, thirsty for blood, trading and profiting in human lives and organ bodies that they ever are eager for wealth at the expense of the poor of the poorest, letting the poor nation in worst economic condition.

    Today we know the roots and danger of dictatorship and fascism, and how an ideology combined with a conformist mind-set can reshape people’s minds. Totalitarianism across small
    Eritrea, ideology of one heart and one people, in forcing conformity, fear and collective psychosis that came with it. “Fear is an awful and irrational thing,” “It must yield to reason.” The same lies, the same old mantra we are the trusty and guardian of the nation nothing else than protecting the country from a big “American plot” to weaken the nation. With old nostalgia for Bolshevism and Stalinism. DIA was Maoism student and hard core Communist which is
    the foundational ideology of the regime and Eritrea dictatorship, definitely copying patterns inherent to other Bolshevist and Stalinist few remaining fascist states from former disintegrated
    soviet union , the ideology of total blind submission and obedience to authority, the persecution
    of those who think freely, independently and differently, and the propaganda machine of unifying around a common enemy, in this case, the American are coming to get you, blame all your problem to American conspiracy .would any one left take them seriously? What does it mean when the dogs cries dogs? Most obviously, Asmara propagandists take us for ideates and fools— Eritrea is ready to set its own course, needs normal and intelligent public debate, the creation
    of parliamentary democracy and pluralism , and amicable ,beneficial and workable good relations with all of its neighbours. Eritrea is not south Sudan to compare with. Eritrea with is full of sophisticated, educated and ambitious people and those who are so submissive and foolish to fall for the Bolshevism and Stalinism state will one day have to ask themselves just how, and in the service of what.

  • Ermias

    Maybe 13 or 14 years ago, most Eritreans would have woowwwwwwed this interview admiring yemun anbesa. The talk on the street would be “shaebia eko kelelti aykonun, amet kilte amet habom, neza kula alem kezarbuwa eyom. Nay kulen hagerat eyom kaa wishten wishate’an zfeltu.’

    But now we all know who they are and how empty their bluff is. For some of us “they are who we thought they were.”*

    If you can’t feed your children, are you going to do everything you can to feed them or say ‘the neighboring guy cannot feed his kids either thus you are picking on me because I am a short and bald guy.’

    *Courtesy of Lovie Smith.

  • Tesfu

    AWATE Moderator
    Who is using my name. I am the first to use it

  • Samuel N.

    Very poor interview. The journalist just run through the questions he had.
    Q. Why are you isolated
    A. We are not isolated
    Q. Ok. why are there refugees
    A. There are no refugees
    Q. Ok thank you Mr Yemane for your time.
    A. You are welcome. Thank you for the opportunity.

  • ethiopia

    it is true that immigration from ethiopia (150 thousands return, 1/2 million still in saudi, 100s of 1000 in south africa, 100s of 1000 in yemen and another 100s of 1000 in neighboring countries) is many folds the number of eritreans but rarely we hear about it. it is also true those who rule ethiopia at this moment occupies eritrean territories and those who rule ethiopia r from a small region that doesn’t represent more than 5% of the peoples of ethiopia. but u hear lies from pretender 24/7 .

    • Manny H

      Are you wish to be an Ethiopian for future after your shabians disappeared and that is why you call your self Ethiopia you junk shabians dog.

      • ethiopia

        am ethiopian that is why i call myself ethiopia. for me i see eritrea as i see u tigraiyns just because for stealing purpose u(wayane) call yourself ethiopian that doesn’t make u different with shabians, u wayanes r junk thieves.

  • Tesfu

    What else can he say? Alu ketan!!! He is a big liar, that’s why he is still alive.

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