The Eritrean Political Forces (EPF), first initiated in February 2020 by a call from the late Berhane Woldegebriel, former director of Eritrean Education and Publication Society, aims to enhance the voice and action of the Eritrean opposition camp under the slogan of “Let us unify the political forces to save the Nation.”
In view of our past experiences and the multiplicity of viewpoints and organizations, the work to unify our ranks was not taken to be an easy mission. However, progress was made through an accord reached in July 2020 to launch a phase of cooperation at the level of joint work in selected fields, and by April 2022, the partners agreed in principle to upgrade their relationship by eventually forming a wider political umbrella.
And it is true that the coordination phase did not only succeed to facilitate the EPF partners know one another better but also helped them to start conducting joint tasks, know each other’s thoughts and viewpoints and in the process build mutual trust and tolerance. On top of this, the joint platform helped enhance common understanding on the urgency of removing the dictatorial regime that brought untold suffering to the entire nation, and avert the looming threats to Eritrea’s national sovereignty. Yet, no one can deny that there existed differences that made joint works less effective. Those differences also delayed by at times stalling the process of establishing a wider umbrella. Nonetheless, breakdown of the lofty initiative was not acceptable to all EPF partners who were determined to continue the networking by acting only in areas in which full agreement was reached. It indeed was a stage full of challenges requiring persistence in continued dialoguing and giving more chance to keep the ideal going.
It is to be recalled that the EPF accord on the formation of a joint provisional leadership that could lead to the creation of a wide political umbrella within one year was made public on the occasion of celebration of the beginning of our armed struggle that took place on 2 September 2023 . However, on 10 November 2023, all four EPF partners held a meeting at which the ENCDC side informed that their alliance had encountered some misunderstanding that could not let the body to continue in the unity process at this stage, and wished success for the remaining three EPF partners. On their part, the remaining three forces hoped that the ENCDC would eventually clear their house and rejoin the ongoing process to form an inclusive national political umbrella for the opposition.
Soon after, the other three EPF partners, namely: the Eritrean United National Front (EUNF); the Eritrean People’s Democratic Party (EPDP), and the Red Sea Afar Democratic Organization (RSADO), met under the leadership of Gherezghiher Tewelde and his deputy in EPF, Yassin Abdalla, and formed four joint work departments. The EPF is, therefore, happy to announce that the 9-person body representing the three coalescing partners shall commence work under the name of Higher Transitional Body of the EPF.
The Higher Transitional Body shall be guided by the fundamental principles agreed upon by EPF on 1st of January 2023 as listed below:
- Remove the PDFJ dictatorship and in its place establish a constitutional democratic system of governance;
- Safeguard the unity of the Eritrean people;
- Defend Eritrean independence and sovereignty, and
- Secure and guarantee the basic rights and liberties of the people.
By taking into consideration the untold damage already done to the nation by the dictatorial PFDJ regime in the past three decades in addition to the ongoing threats to the very existence of independent Eritrea, we in the EPF are of the strong belief that it is now the 11th hour for all the Eritrean political forces and other forces for change to suspend their differences and close their ranks than ever before without delay. Indeed, we all have no choice other than rallying under a slogan of action to save the people and their hard-won independent state.
As EPF, we consider ourselves to be only at an early stage in unifying our ranks. Thus, this restart is backed by a determination to work effectively with all change seekers to remove the repressive regime based on the full understanding and conviction that the task of change in Eritrea cannot be done by specified forces, say by the EPF working alone. In short, the EPF is not for rivalry or competition with other forces but to complement the ongoing coalescing of our forces for change. Therefore, at this high momentum of resolve for joint work by all forces of change including civic formations, youth movements and women’s groups, we in the EPF solemnly call upon all of them concretize united action than at any time in our past history.
Victory to the Eritrean People’s Democratic Struggle!
Downfall to the Dictatorial PFDJ Regime!
Eternal Honour and Memory and to Eritrean Martyrs!
17 November, 2023
Violent Eritrean Government Supporter Finds that British Justice Enforces Protections for JournalistsSunday, 19 November 2023 21:22 Written by Martin Plaut
Violent Eritrean Government Supporter Finds that British Justice Enforces Protections for JournalistsSaturday, 18 November 2023 20:56 Written by Martin Plaut
Martin Plaut posted: " Source: Human Rights Concern - Eritrea (HRCE) 10 November 2023 Eritrean Government Supporter, Yacob Ghebremedhin, who was given a 22-month sentence on 7 November by a judge at the Isleworth Crown Court, has a criminal history of targeting" Martin Plaut
Source: Human Rights Concern - Eritrea (HRCE)
10 November 2023
Eritrean Government Supporter, Yacob Ghebremedhin, who was given a 22-month sentence on 7 November by a judge at the Isleworth Crown Court, has a criminal history of targeting journalists in the UK with violence.
In the seeming belief that he could behave in Britain as he would in Eritrea, Ghebremedhin attempted to enforce his political beliefs with physical assaults and violent attacks on journalists who tell the truth and are critical of the Eritrean government. However, he has now had to face British justice for his criminal actions, and has received a prison sentence as a consequence.
In 2018, Ghebremedhin attacked a British citizen, former BBC Editor Martin Plaut, because of his reporting on events in Eritrea. Mr Plaut has often revealed the truth about violence and killings by the Eritrean state, which has made him the object of hate and aggression by the regime and its supporters. Ghebremedhin was arrested and charged, brought before Highbury Corner Magistrates Court, found guilty, and fined.
In November 2019, Ghebremedhin and a gang of four other violent Eritrean government supporters, attacked the founder of Assena Satellite TV, Amanuel Eyasu, because of the truths being revealed about Eritrea in the channel’s broadcasts. Once again Ghebremedhin was charged, found guilty, and sentenced at the Isleworth Crown Court to a 16-week suspended jail sentence, a £600 fine, and a 30-day 7:00 p.m. to 7:00a.m curfew. He was also given a restraining order prohibiting him from contacting Mr Eyasu for five years.
However, in June 2022 Ghebremedhin phoned Amanuel Eyasu from Eritrea. During this phone call he swore he would kill him and bury him underground, and Mr Eyasu reported the threat to the Police.
On 28 May, 2023, when Ghebremedhin returned to the UK, he was arrested at Heathrow Airport. Since then, he has remained in Wormwood-Scrubs prison. He appeared in court, and pleaded guilty to two offences: Threatening to Kill, and Breaching a Restraining Order. He was found guilty and sentenced to 22 months of imprisonment for threatening to kill and breaching a Restraining Order. Ghebremedhin was also given a 10-year restraining order.
Human Rights Concern Eritrea (HRCE) applauds the actions of the British police and judicial authorities. HRCE also wishes to point out that people who enjoy the benefits of democracy in the U.K, but who attack journalists and activists, and vow to continue such attacks, are also expressing disdain for British laws and should not be allowed to reside in the U.K. Instead, they should be sent back to serve the dictatorial regime that they support, the regime which is known for its cruelty and continues to commit crimes against humanity against its own people.------
These are some of their findings.
The Panel identified three such illegal enterprises that have been operating in
The Panel determined that the commander of the Petroleum Facilities Guard in Zawiyah, Mohamed Al Amin Al-Arabi Kashlaf (LYi.025), and the commander of the Libyan Coast Guard in Zawiyah, Abd al-Rahman al-Milad (LYi.026), together with Osama Al-Kuni Ibrahim (LYi.029), continue to run a large trafficking and smuggling network in Zawiyah.
Since the two commanders were listed in 2018, they have further expanded that network by including armed entities operating in the Warshafanah, Sabratah and Zuwarah areas. The expanded Zawiyah Network now encompasses elements of 55 Brigade, the Stability Support Apparatus command in Zawiyah, and in particular its maritime units, and individual members of the Libyan Coast Guard, all operating with a view to executing the Network’s common plan of gaining substantive financial and other assets from human trafficking and migrant smuggling activities.
The Network has established an irregular detention system that comprises the Al-Nasr, Al-Maya and Al-Zahra detention centres for migrants, as wells multiple temporary detention places in the areas of Zawiyah and Harsha, where elements of the Network committed serious violations of international humanitarian law and international human rights law against 34 detainees. This detention system has enabled the Network to exercise physical control of trafficked or smuggled persons for the purpose of gaining financial and other profits for the benefit of its members.
Libya. The UN Security Council confirms sanctions on coastguard traffickers
Nello Scavo Friday 20 October 2023
The tightening of sanctions for the bosses of human beings, oil and arms trafficking was unanimously approved. From the coast guard "Bija" to the heads of the "oil police" up to the director of the "lagers"
In the center the major of the Libyan coast guard al-Milad (Bija) and to his left, in a blue shirt, Mohammed Kashlaf, head of the "oil police" accused of being the head of the criminal organization
Libya is not a safe port of disembarkation, and the direct connections between the Libyan coast guard and traffickers in human beings, oil and weapons are the driving force behind the chain of exploitation and enrichment. The United Nations Security Council unanimously accepted the requests of the UN investigators , who proposed tightening sanctions against the main bosses of a criminal system that brings together politics, militias and clans.
The decision puts the Italian government and the Piantedosi directives in difficulty, according to which humanitarian rescue organizations should first coordinate with the so-called Libyan coast guard, which the UN instead indicates as one of the main mechanisms of the criminal system.
After a long internal discussion, the Security Council accepted the requests of the UN investigators in Libya, whose mandate was renewed until 2025. The representatives for whom the freezing of assets and the absolute travel ban are requested are five, but one died on March 16 this year in Egypt.
The other members of the "Libyan poker" are heavy names, starting with Saadi Gaddafi, the ex-footballer son of Colonel Gaddafi, who is trying to sell a property in Canada by circumventing the sanctions also through the Libyan consulate in Turkey. The fifty-year-old Gaddafi would have traveled undisturbed and on 27 June 2023, UN experts wrote to the Turkish government «regarding the implementation of the asset freezing and travel ban measures. No response was received." According to investigators, Gaddafi's signature on a power of attorney filed in Turkey constitutes "proof of Turkey's failure to comply with the travel ban measure".
If the Gaddafis represent the past that continues to loom over Libya, especially due to the enormous legacy left by the dictator patriarch and never truly quantified, the list of those sanctioned includes the new bosses of today's Libya. Like Mohammed Al Amin Al-Arabi Kashlaf .
"The Group of Experts has established that the Petroleum Facilities Guard of Zawiyah is an entity that is nominally under the control of the Government of National Unity", therefore not a private police in the strict sense but an armed group affiliated to the central authorities and responsible for monitor the main oil plants, from which however a certain quantity of hydrocarbons is illegally disappeared and then placed on the European market thanks to a dense network of smugglers.
"The group of experts - it continues - has asked the Libyan authorities to provide updated information on the implementation of the asset freeze and travel ban against this individual, including details on the current status and chain of command of Petroleum Facilities Guard in Zawiyah, as well as on his financial activities and personal economic resources."
Also in this case the Libyan authorities "have not yet responded".
Connected to Kashlaf is Abd al-Rahman al-Milad , perhaps the best known of the clan. Also known as "Bija", he used "forged United Nations documents in an attempt to lift the travel ban and asset freeze imposed on him". However, Bija moved forward, finding support both "in the Libyan government and in private interlocutors within Libya", with the aim of obtaining support "for his request for cancellation" of the sanctions. In particular, UN investigators are in possession of "an official Libyan document, issued on 28 September 2022 by the Office of the Attorney General, in which the responsible authorities are ordered - the experts report - to remove Al-Milad's name from the system national monitoring of arrivals and departures".
A cover-up at the highest level of the judiciary, which had already acquitted him of the oil trafficking charges, and which "would allow Al-Milad to leave Libya with the assets in his possession, in violation of the asset freezing measure". On 25 January 2023 «the Panel asked the Libyan authorities to provide updated information on the effective implementation of the asset freeze and travel ban against Al-Milad. The request was made following the resumption of his professional duties in the Libyan Armed Forces, including appointment as an officer at the Janzour Naval Academy following his release from pre-trial detention on 11 April 2021." Nine months later, the Libyan authorities "have still not responded".
The resolution approved by the Security Council is also based on another accusation from the «Panel of Experts» who «established that the commander of the Petroleum Facilities Guard of Zawiyah, Mohamed Al Amin Al-Arabi Kashlaf, and the commander of the Guard coastal Libyan Zawiyah, Abd al-Rahman al-Milad (Bija), together with Osama Al-Kuni Ibrahim , continue to operate a vast trafficking and smuggling network in Zawiyah." The sanctions did not hurt them. “Since the two commanders were listed in 2018, they have further expanded the network to include armed entities operating in the Warshafanah, Sabratha and Zuara areas.” Everything revolves around prisons for refugees. « The Zawiyah network continues to be centralized in the Al-Nasr migrant detention facility in Zawiyah, managed by Osama Al-Kuni Ibrahim», Bija's cousin identified thanks to some images published by Avvenire in September 2019. The name he appears in several investigations. Based on «ample evidence of a consistent pattern of human rights violations, the Panel found - the panel added - that Abd al-Rahman al-Milad and Osama al-Kuni Ibrahim continued to be responsible for acts of torture, forced labor and other ill-treatment of persons illegally confined in the Al-Nasr detention centre ", with the aim of extorting "large sums of money and as punishment".
The criminal business model is precisely what Rome does not want to recognize, but which the UN investigators and the Security Council reiterate: «Zawiyah's expanded network - we read in the report - now includes elements of the 55th Brigade, the command of the Stability Support Unit in Zawiyah, particularly its maritime units, and individual members of the Libyan Coast Guard, all working to execute the network's joint plan to obtain significant financial and other resources from human trafficking activities and migrants".
The graph with which UN experts showed the Security Council the criminal system involving members of the Libyan coast guard and human traffickers - Panel of UN experts
The Security Council was shown the scheme which includes «four operational phases: (a) the search and return to land of migrants at sea; (b) the transfer from disembarkation points to the detention centers of the Directorate for the fight against illegal migration; (c) the abuse of detainees in detention centers; (d) the release of prisoners who are victims of abuse." Once the migrants are released, they re-enter the cycle of exploitation: put back into the sea, leaving a percentage to be captured by the coastguards to justify Italian and European support for the so-called Libyan coast guard, and again «transfer from the disembarkation points to the centers of detention by the Directorate for the fight against illegal migration; the abuse of prisoners in detention centers; the release of prisoners who are victims of abuse".
The UN report and the unanimous vote of the 15 countries that sit in the Security Council are a slap in the face. «With regards to the travel ban and the freezing of assets - we read in a summary note of the session at the Glass Palace -, the Member States, in particular those in which the designated persons and entities are based, have been invited to report" to the Sanctions Committee on "their respective actions to effectively implement both measures in relation to all persons included in the sanctions list".
All the exponents indicated by the "Panel of experts" are included in the Interpol "alert" list. The resolution approved yesterday also concerns the smuggling of oil and weapons. The Security Council extended “the authorization of measures to stop the illicit export of petroleum products from Libya and the mandate of the group of experts helping to oversee this process.”
Martin Plaut posted: " From the Eritrean Seaman Union We, the Eritrean Seaman Union, issue this official statement on 21 October 2023 in response to recent statements made by the Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed concerning Eritrea's territorial sovereignty and its waters" Martin Plaut
We, the Eritrean Seaman Union, issue this official statement on 21 October 2023 in response to recent statements made by the Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed concerning Eritrea's territorial sovereignty and its waters in the Red Sea.
Recent developments in the Red Sea region, particularly Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed's statements regarding the ownership of the Red Sea, have raised significant concerns for us.
These statements not only raise questions about Eritrea's sovereignty in the Red Sea but also present legal and diplomatic challenges.
It appears that these statements are driven by the aspiration for a 'Greater Ethiopia' and territorial unity in the Red Sea region, potentially compromising both the aspirations of Greater Ethiopia and the sovereignty of the Eritrean Red Sea.
Consequently, we strongly urge all relevant parties to prioritize the sovereignty and well-being of the Eritrean Red Sea.
We emphasize the importance of resolving these issues through diplomatic dialogue, adhering to the principles of international law.
We call for an immediate cessation of any actions that threaten Eritrea's sovereignty.
We sincerely hope that collaborative efforts will lead to a peaceful resolution, in line with international law, and respect the rights of the rightful owners of the Eritrean Red Sea. Eritrean Seaman Union
Norway prepares to prevent “Transnational Repression” by foreign powers against diaspora communitiesTuesday, 24 October 2023 20:27 Written by Martin Plaut
Mon 10/23/2023 12:29 PM
War is likely in the Horn. It is just a matter of who, when and over what
By Makeda Saba
I observe the following issues in the Horn of Africa.
The relationship between President Isaias and PM Abiy
Tigray – TPLF unfinished business
Isaias is unhappy about the Pretoria Cessation of Hostilities Agreement and has made it known that he disapproves.
Isaias is unhappy that twice PM Abiy pulled the ENDF out of Tigray—the first time soon after claiming victory and the second time just before the Pretoria Agreement.
Fano militia – Eritrea backing, arming training. We have seen the videos.
Afar militia in Ethiopia – Eritrea backing, arming, training. They even returned to Eritrea, Eritrean Afar Soldiers fleeing the regime.
Oromo – History of Eritrea support – officially suspended in 2018, but....? There is no information on any Eritrea Oromo reconnection, but anything is possible in the game of politics of convenience and power.
Bademe may be under Eritrean control, but it is a Kunama area. In recent history (2002), they asked for the protection of the Ethiopian Government.
The Irob border, a part of the territory, should be handed over to Eritrea as per the Eritrea-Ethiopian Boundary Commission. However, the Irob people in the area want to remain part of Ethiopia; they do not want to be separated.
Eritrea has closed all the central and Eastern borders
Ethiopia has closed the OmHajer/Humera border to cut off the Fano militia
The border dispute still needs to be resolved, and the Eritrea Djibouti Agreement sponsored by Qatar is not fully implemented. Critically, to date, Eritrea has not fully accounted for all of the Djibouti POWs.
The hottest border contestation within Ethiopia has to be Welkait – Western Tigray, claimed by the Amhara and the people of Tigray. Per the Pretoria Agreement, the Amhara Fano militia had to withdraw from Welkait and hand over to the ENDF. This is an outcome the Fano are not happy with, especially since the mechanism for resolving the dispute is stillborn.
Eritrea is keen for the Amhara to hold on to Welkait because it:
Denies Tigray access to Sudan in general and specifically Port Sudan
Provides Eritrea with an even longer border with Sudan
In Ethiopia, there are other internal land and border contestations, such as:
Benishangul – the issue is land taken for the GERD, land assigned to Amhara and other highlanders, without consultation in the 1980s
External border between Afar and Somali Region
Internal border between Oromia and Somali Region and so on.
In each case, there is no credible, trusted and independent institutional process to mediate, arbitrate, or adjudicate the disputes.
Ethiopia Sudan – Al Fashiga
The dispute over this border, specifically over the access to very fertile land in the area, is a source of continuous tensions between Ethiopia and Sudan. Within Ethiopia, access to the land in question is primarily of interest to the Amhara. Therefore, the possible annexation by force of arms of Welkait set a precedent for the region that any Sudanese factions could not ignore.
GERD – Sudan, Egypt, Eritrea, Nile Basin
Before 2018, Eritrea supported Egypt’s position on the dam. President Isaias even gave an interview from Cairo to the effect that the dam was a big white elephant. After 2018, they flipped in support of PM Abiy, who, before becoming PM, was not supportive of the dam. However, after 2018, the dam became a rallying point for all Ethiopians; hence, PM Abiy flipped. The dam is still a rallying point for all Ethiopians. Within this story is the mysterious death of the dam engineer – deemed a suicide, but there are sufficient anomalies to cast doubt as to whether it genuinely was suicide. I digress...
President Isaias seems to have flipped back to Egypt – hence his recent visit to Cairo and flip on the Sudan Coup Generals. He, officially at least, flipped from supporting Hemeti and the Janjaweed to supporting Burhan, whom Egypt supports. Therefore, Eritrea remains a crucial player in the Sudan crisis/ /resolution, but Ethiopia is nowhere to be seen.
Isaias’s flip to Egypt can be seen as shoring up support in the event of any attempt by Abiy to annex Assab.
Isaias also seems to have repaired his relationship with Somalia by allowing the repatriation of the Somali soldiers trained in Eritrea. I am sure A three-year training programme included political formation, hence the mastery of how to manipulate and control people; therefore, we should be very cautious about a three-year training programme.
Omo River – Somalia, Kenya
The water dispute that does not make the news is the one that concerns the Omo River in the South of Ethiopia. In this area, there are dams and water irrigation projects that take minimal to no account of the water needs of the neighbours.
Red Sea – Assab
There is a deliberate clouding of the issues
Access – is definitively possible. It is an arrangement that Ethiopia already has with Djibouti, Mombasa, etc...But the devil is in the details because access to Assab will require extensive upgrades ( to international shipping standards) of the port and possibly the area around it. This raised the question of who pays for it. Eritrea will want Ethiopia to spend and expect to profit from the deal from the get-go. It is the arrangement they have with the mining companies. The inability to agree on terms and conditions for access was the source of tension before the 1998-2000 border war started. The same failure to reach an agreement was also the reason the Oil refinery in Assab was closed by Isaias in 1997.
Possession – This would require that the Eritrean government to hand over Assab to Ethiopia.
The conventional thinking and the thinking of every Eritrean anywhere is that this is not possible because Assab was the first point of the Italian colonisation of Eritrea, and we all want to keep the State of Eritrea as established by the Italian/ Ethiopian Colonial treaties and as it was before the annexation of Eritrea by Emperor Haile Selassie.
However, we are dealing with people who apply such thinking only if it is convenient to them and their hold of power. Isaias and Abiy have transported us back to the 18th and 19th centuries when taking territory by force of arms was not only legitimate, it was the mark of a leader. In addition, since 2018, we have not learned what PM Abiy and President Isaias have agreed to do because of the total lack of transparency. Hence, it is possible that a secret deal over Assab was reached and is not going as planned because of personal differences between the two leaders.
No War, No Peace
Based on my outline above, we are returning to No War No Peace. This suits Isaias as he gets to maintain his iron grip over Eritrea and can fall back on the narrative of “You cannot trust Ethiopians”, switching back from “Tigray” and “Woyane”. We are already starting to see the Tesfanews, etc, making this switch, calling Abiy on the issue of the Red Sea, and circulating previous videos where Abiy thanked the EDF for their sacrifice and support in Tigray.
We already know President Isaias is comfortable with the No War, No Peace scenario. The issue will be whether he will allow TPLF and PM Abiy to reconcile. I do not think he will. Hence, he is not pulling out of Tigray (i.e. Ethiopian territory) and will continue to arm and support militias in Ethiopia.
Abiy staked his reputation on the normalisation of the relationship between Eritrea and Ethiopia, the opening of the border and gaining access to the Red Sea via Eritrea. Therefore, he will not be comfortable with a No War, No-peace scenario and Eritrean troops in Ethiopian territory.
Another round of war in the Horn is much more likely than we think. Because both leaders:
do not think of power and politics in modern terms. They think of it as did their ancestors during the era of the Princess. Therefore, war is not the failure of politics- it is politics;
have learnt that they can do anything, any horror, and all will be forgiven because their territories have International geo-political and strategic importance. Post-Tigray war, the US, EU, etc, could not wait to normalise relationships with Ethiopia and the UAE; the Saudis do not care.
President Isaias is actively pushing for a multipolar world and consequently has aligned Eritrea behind Putin over Ukraine. The Russians are looking for a naval base on the Red Sea, and Eritrea will likely allow it. Dahlak Islands were the site of the USSR naval base; though it is in ruins, the site is still there.
The recent US naval presence in the Red Sea in response to the Palestine conflict is likely to expedite the establishment of a Russian naval base in Eritrean territorial waters.
The Israeli-Palestine conflict and the failure of the international community to see that what Israel is doing to the Palestinians is wrong and is fast heading to disaster provides the cover of a perfect storm for Abiy and Isaias to create another Horn of Africa war. After all, the US presidential elections and COVID-19 provided cover for the Tigray war.
As a final point, we should pay attention to who provides which drones to whom.
Martin Plaut posted: " Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) stated: “The Nile and Red Sea determine Ethiopia’s future. They will contribute either to its development or demise.” Red Sea takes center stage as Ethiopia looks to assert regional presence Source: The Report" Martin Plaut
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) stated: “The Nile and Red Sea determine Ethiopia’s future. They will contribute either to its development or demise.”
Red Sea takes center stage as Ethiopia looks to assert regional presence
October 14, 2023
Ministry crafts nation building, national interest documents
A draft document prepared by the Ministry of Peace has proposed that the current administration should seek to reaffirm Ethiopia’s strategic and economic national interests in the Red Sea. These interests have been of great geopolitical importance to Ethiopia for centuries, until Ethiopia has become landlocked.
Titled “Ethiopia’s National Interest: Principles and Content,” the draft document emphasizes the imperative for Ethiopia to exercise its right to construct and utilize ports, ensure access to the Red Sea, as well as the Eden and Gulf Peninsula regions, and exercise its right to port development and utilization.
The Horn of Africa and the Red Sea region have become a magnet to superpowers competing for their geopolitical, geo-economic, and geostrategic interests, according to the document. Therefore, “Ethiopia should engage with other nations in the area to ensure its access to the ports and be able to overcome geostrategic impediments in this respect, the draft document noted, before such actions start to impede the development of the region,” it states.
The document provides a list of priorities, including the preservation of the country’s territorial integrity, enhancing regional influence, promoting peace and security, effectively advancing Ethiopia’s interests in the Red Sea and Gulf Peninsula area, and fostering pan-African development.
Establishing principled bilateral and multilateral relationships, securing Ethiopia’s right to use the Nile River, ensuring access to ports, and maximizing the utilization of untapped natural resources, are also listed as priorities.
Considering its proximity to the Red Sea, “coupled with its growing population and economy, Ethiopia should promote its security, geopolitical, and economic interests in the red sea.” The document further asserts that the African Union should have ultimate authority over Africa’s water resources, seas and ocean shores.
In a documentary broadcasted on the state television channel last Friday, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (PhD) stated: “The Nile and red sea determine Ethiopia’s future. They will contribute either to its development or demise.”
The Ministry has produced another draft document titled “Ethiopia’s National Identity and National Values Identification/Decisions.”
This document outlines a new plan for Ethiopia to reconstruct its national identity. It addresses the necessary steps, principles, and approaches required for the implementation of Ethiopia’s revitalized nation-building project at various levels. It emphasizes Ethiopia’s new national identity project on the global stage and suggests the registration of patent rights.
The nation-building document recommends that the envisioned national values incorporate a range of factors, including the country’s diversity and historical heritage.