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Home / Awate Team / Was Hacked Was Hacked

Since September 1, 2000, when this website was launched operating on a shoestring budget, we have been battling the ill-wishes of the PFDJ and its choir, as well as the random attacks from hackers who do that for a hobby. In many ways, it is a lot like battling fires set by mischievous kids or malicious adults: the motivation is different, but the end result is the same. One of the things we strive to be is the un-PFDJ: to inform, when the PFDJ’s modus operandi is to hide; to inspire and embolden Eritreans, when the PFDJ’s methodology is to sell fear and intimidation; to show Eritreans in all their diverse identity: history culture and values, an alternative to the PFDJ’s vision of uniformity and submission to a dominant culture. And the one thing that the PFDJ is famous for is its sickening paranoia so, in our attempt to be the un-PFDJ, we have not shared with you the many times we were given cause to be paranoid because we don’t want to even sound like them.

Prior to September 1, 2001, the “visionary” Eritrean regime was in the stone age: it didn’t even have a website. So as Gedab News broke one damaging news after another about the PFDJ’s criminality, they had no response other than to attempt to shut us down or to disseminate to their “community organizations” the message that we had to be destroyed (as an institution and as individuals.) When it emerged out of its stone age and launched in 2001 (courtesy of the administrators of, their website, in its inaugural issue (September 1, 2001) broke the “news” that the G-15 (who had, under the name selfi-democracy, launched a website called on May 24, 2001) had met in New York, NY on August 18, 2001. After the usual accusations of treason, sabotage, etc, shaebia had this to say about us:

“In regard to media work, the decision was taken to start a web-site, under the name ‘’. Participants were informed that had proposed that the two web-sites pool their resources and oprate as a single outlet, but the G-15 felt that that would be giving Awate importance that it did not deserve. It was pointed out that Awate had gained “popularity” only because it had been fed with constant information by the G-15.”

Besides the laughable claim that a by-then well-established website ( would merge itself into an upstart website (, now long-deceased) with no content, the implication was that would soon collapse and its Gedab News, starved of sources, would just wither. The PFDJ, which is best characterized by its unique ability to make outrageously inaccurate predictions, has been predicting for the last 11 years that we were on our last legs. But, through the years, as we changed hosts, website administrators, and conducted four complete redesigns, we never had a down-time that lasted more than a few hours. Because we didn’t want to succumb to PFDJ’s paranoia we always accused the technology, or our lack of expertise on the subject, and we moved on.

Until Friday, December 2, 2011.

This website was down from the afternoon of December 2, 2011 through the evening of December 6, 2011. That is 4 days, an eternity in the news and information dissemination business. During those days, we were repeatedly hacked, viruses were planted, and files damaged. Someone, some entity, tried to wipe out our system. The good news is that we lost nothing that can’t be reproduced. The even better news is that this actually motivates us even more to stick to our mission: inform, inspire, embolden, reconcile. The best news is that, for a new/information outlet that believes in the universal right of self-defense and fighting back, this aligns us with bigger organizations who are very good at slapping those who want to muzzle people’s right to free expression.

We are back.


About Awate Team

The Awate Team is a group of individuals who collaborate in preparing editorial contents that mainly appear under the PENCIL signature and other columns that carry the Awate Team signature. It represents the collective team's view.

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  • wed. garza

    He who stands for the truth be it institution or person will hardly die nor be muzzled. I’m sure the unqualified hacker’s of hegdef can not and certainly will not be able to cause any credible damage. your voice is the voice of the silent majority who are on the rising scale and theirs from day one approaches ZERO. Even the miracle of TV Ere will not give them a break. Time has changed and the momentum is with you.

  • Tecle

    Welcome back Awate and the other attacked Eritrean opposition sites. This attack clearly describes who PFDJ are and what they stand for. This should serve as a good confirmation to those who still try to see any value in the brutal PFDJ regime.

  • As the good old adage goes… "what does not kill you makes you stronger." I am certain our beloved will come out stronger and fiercer from this experience. PFDJ will be sorry they even tried their cheap shot.

  • belay

    Feraah aserte betru.That is the evidence.We know they will will ask where is the evidence.Missed you Awete.

  • Wedi Adem

    PFDJ and followers are dummies. Everything about them is uncivil, arrogance and stupidity. Do they
    forget it is 21 century, to act retarded in free world shows how dump they are.

  • Popular Front for Dictatorship and Jail(PFDJ)

    Hgdef medef has lost a lot of dollars to pay for hackers who live in north korea to come down many opposition party websites.. including…
    you can check for china daily news paper, so hgdef mendef you are a looser… nothing more… is a voice of 5 million eritreans not a voice of Isayas dictator ,barbaric and tyrnat regime..
    welcome back awate

  • Kemal ali

    Happy to see you again our Awatista. We miss your wisdom 4 couple of days.It is so long 4 a freedom,truth and peace loving citzen.

  • Nasser Abdella

    Dear Awate team and Saleh Gadi, without a doubt it has been a very lonely few days without my beloved is only now I realised how much I'm in love with this website and it's best Eritrean writers, such us Saleh Gadi, Saleh Younus, Amaniel Hidrat, Mohammed Ahmed, Fesshaye Woldu, Omer Jabirl.Aklilu Zere.As to the hackeing scandal, what would you expect from this dirty dogs, cheap Sheabia's other than scandalous and outrageous act.Welcome back my heroic and surely the struggle against the bastards will contuine much more ferociously than ever before.

  • Mohammed Ahmed

    The PFDJ regime is more like a dog chasing its own tail these days. Its attempts to silence Awate are just as futile. And mind you, this is not like they haven’t tried to do so in the past – they have tried many times using different tactics. What these thugs don’t understand is that Awate has achieved almost 99% of its stated mission over the past decade. It informed, inspired and emboldened millions of true Eritrean nationals who are prepared now more than ever before to chart their own destiny. That is the true essence of, and no matter how hard the PFDJ regime tries, it will never be able to reverse that achievement. Hacking a website is just a nuisance – an inconvenience at worst. Well come back Awate!

  • Sami

    Welcome back Awate..Every body knows means Truth and this truth is bitter to the liers and ditractors. To tell you frankly I really enjoy the news and especially the analysis made by both Saleh Gadi and Younis…I drink the your analysis like milk and it is tasty and full of truth and fact based prediction. I personally admire your genuine behaviour and you are working from the bottom of your heart for the betterment of Eritrea and its people.

    keep it up

    God bless you

  • I have been following since 2001 and honestly I respect and admire the contents of this website. I wish you all the best and may God/Allah give you all the strength to keep informing, inspiring, and emboldening us as usual. Job well done Saleh (Gadi).

  • Milkias M Yohannes

    Great to see you again My awate! The voice of the voiceless. Despite all the efforts of the terrorist PFDJ gangs to muzzle free press and information, thanks to the likes AWATE,Eritreans are much more informed aware and embolden than any time before! Every peace loving Eritrean is with you Awate.
    Death to the terrorsit fascist regime in Asmara
    Freedom to Eritrea!

  • Welcome back…

  • Mohamed Ibrahim Mohamed

    Thats the spirit, keep up the good work, and please lets us know how we could help.

  • Mussie D.

    Hi Awate!

    What else can we expect from a desperate brutal regime. But the truth is that they cannot hack Awate for ever, Awate represents the inspiration of the millions silent Eritrean people, Awate is a faithful servant of us, those who fight for democracy in eritrea. All the years has Awate stauchly fought for the preveilance of justice, democracy and peace in Eritrea. Not only now when the PFDJ is loosing ground in all places, but even when they were trrorizing people even in abroad Awate and its staff has managed to show us all that it is possible to fight. Welcome back Awate.
    The regime in Eritrea led by the Mad Man whose trade mark is WEGAHH TBEL LEYTI and SEGRETOS do not have the capacity to understand that it is impossible to stiffle the peoles of Eritrea. They dont have the slightest idea that heir inhuman system is UNSAVABLE, that it is doomed to failuare. Knowlwdge and awareness doesnot come by itself, one has to learn, read and discuss. PFDJ, starting with the Mad Man do not have time to that, they are busy with killing, arresting people, conspiring against each other and last but not leat are busy with drining alchol.

  • wow, Awate dagmay anbebe shewete, dagmay bezehe berkete,
    denbe PFDJ stela'e selam stelmete, tesebrere anewe teferkete:

    Welcome, this shows how much PFDJ has come down and are no more able to chanllange Awate. the war will continue till we let PFDJ go out of the country.

  • Omer Hamid

    Welcome Back our Awate, I love the determination, bravery and steadfastness of Saleh Gadi Johar, shaeiba would have silenced long ago if it had been confronting any person other than Saleh Gadi, this man never gives up never kneels down and never ever get intimidated, shaebia aklabat such as the dirty bitch called sofia had tried to assassin Saleh Gadi but they failed. the bitterness that shaebia feels towards Saleh Gadi is unimaginable, they hate him only because he keep telling the truth and discloses what they wanted to hide. abshirka Saleh Gadi kulana misilka halena. KEEP GOING ON BROTHER SALEH, I AM SURE YOU ARE THE VICTORIOUS AT THE END.

    • thank you Omer… My appreciation and respect to Saleh Gadi and all who work around him. Keep it up

    • Omer Hamid

      Kokhob Hariray , thanks Kokhob I do also appreciate all the people around such as Saleh Younis and others , but I still believe that Saleh Gadi had been at the forefront fighting the evil shifta regime of shaebia for which he deserves a standing ovation.

  • Welcome back AWATE! Like u said, it felt like eternity.

  • Senai Hagos

    Welcom back Awate. We love you and admire all the news you provide us. PFDJ soon will be gone and Awate, Asmarino, Assenna and other news outlets will be a good resource for our new Eritrea.

  • Ahmed Abdelrehim

    Welcome back, your voice is stronger. Keep on Informing, Inspring, embolden and Reconciling.

  • Down with awate

    I thought the PFDJ was dying and toothless? how did it managed to do all this high tech and knowledge to attack you? you wish PFDJ did this, the truth is PFDJ stopped to acknowledge your existence since the day you slept with the weyane, for a matter of fact every real Eritrean come to understand you are nothing but a bunch of old and grudge driven individuals. hey, by the way, congratulations, Eritrea got sanctioned lol. I am loving it! lol

    • Kokhob

      Now do you think PFDJ’s tooth is sharp just for stopping this site for some days?

    • wed. garza

      you remember once hegdef paid for a lobbying company in USA 50,000 dollars in a month to decorate brightly his brutal face though failed phenominally later. Snatching resources from the needy elderly, widows and orphans just to do that.The pattern is the same, he can repeat paying double to hackers to do the evil mission againt Awate webb, I find it’s in line with the thug’s character, don’t you see…!

  • said

    waw good to see you back awate, becouze of cowardice act pfdj your website was missed by all eritreans,
    and my wish to you guys are to be more vigiliant from this brutal act of pfdj interrupting the only one true information we get, and hopefully this won;t happen again, BRAVO AWATE TEAM. keep up the good work.
    its obvious why they did this becouze you guys have a lot intelectuals who can tell about sanction and motivate yougsters like me to wake up and fight for our rights before its too late.

    yes to sanction kkkkk

  • mekonen

    Welcome back awate.

  • Selamawi

    Well come back Awate!

    It has to be said that this business is a hard work and perhaps draining in many ways. May God give you all the strength you need; and the wisdom we all need. Readers should contribute financially…

    Best wishes