Will the attack on the Iranian general, Qasem Soleimani, by the USA, lead to blowback in the Horn of Africa?

As the BBC reported: “Iran’s most powerful military commander, General Qasem Soleimani, has been killed by a US air strike in Iraq. The 62-year-old spearheaded Iranian military operations in the Middle East as head of Iran’s elite Quds Force. He was killed at Baghdad airport, along with other Iran-backed militia figures, early on Friday in a strike ordered by US President Donald Trump.”

But will this cost the Horn of Africa dearly? Some analysts think so.

But is Jason Patinkin right? Here’s the evidence he cites, which I have edited to make it more grammatical than the Tweets he wrote.

There is a latent Muslim Brotherhood presence in Sudan and Iranian nationals have been arrested in Kenya multiple times in recent years attempting to carry out attacks, while Iranian weapons flow across the Gulf of Aden into Somalia.

Iranian links with Somalia

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard has reportedly shipped weapons to the Houthis in Yemen through Somalia. Evidence for this is provided by a Reuters report from 2017 (See Report 1 below)

More details here from Conflict Armament Research report on weapons made in Iran (including anti-tank guided weapons, RPGs, sniper rifles, and apparently AKM-pattern rifles) which were intercepted en route to Somalia and/or Yemen, including on Iranian built vessels.

This is what the report says: “During a four-week period in February and March 2016, the warships HMAS Darwin, FS Provence, and USS Sirocco, operating as part of the multi-national Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), intercepted three dhows transporting weapons in the Arabian Sea. The dhows, and a significant quantity of military materiel on board, are suspected to have originated in Iran and were destined for Somalia and Yemen.

All three interdictions involved significant weapon seizures, with the weight of evidence

pointing to Iran as the original source and Somalia and/or Yemen as the intended


(See the Report by Conflict Armament Research in Report 2)

Iran and Sudan

Iran was also a long-time player in Sudan under deposed former president Omar al-Bashir. Until a few years ago, Bashir allied himself with Tehran, providing a haven for Muslim Brotherhood members in particular who were not welcome elsewhere in the Arab world.

Although Bashir publicly switched allegiances from Tehran to Riyadh and Abu Dhabi, Sudan continued to low-key harbour Muslim Brotherhood members, especially after al-Sisi came to power in Egypt and cracked down on the group.

In revolutionary Sudan, Islamists including Muslim Brotherhood members once sustained by Bashir are adrift. One Muslim Brotherhood member who fled Cairo to Khartoum in 2013, told me in May how his heart sank when Bashir was overthrown. It’s easy to see how such a person may be looking for new patrons.

The Saudis and UAE

All that said, the bigger Gulf influence in the Horn of Africa still comes from Saudi and UAE, who have more or less successfully courted Sudan, Ethiopia, Eritrea, and swaths of Somalia/ Somaliland.

The UAE in particular has significant military presence or influence in multiple countries – much larger than Iran. But this just underscores how ripe the region is for proxy conflict if Iran decides to retaliate.

With close relationships (including militarily) between the US and Somalia, Uganda, Ethiopia, Djibouti, and Kenya, it’s easy to see East Africans becoming victims of a US-Iranian conflict that has nothing to do with them. Let’s hope for restraint by all sides. End.

Report 1

Exclusive: Iran Revolutionary Guards find new route to arm Yemen rebels

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-gulf-kuwait-iran-exclusive/exclusive-iran-revolutionary-guards-find-new-route-to-arm-yemen-rebels-idUSKBN1AH4I4">Reuters: Jonathan Saul. AUGUST 1, 2017

LONDON (Reuters) – Iran’s Revolutionary Guards have started using a new route across the Gulf to funnel covert arms shipments to their Houthi allies in Yemen’s civil war, sources familiar with the matter have told Reuters.

In March, regional and Western sources told Reuters that Iran was shipping weapons and military advisers to the Houthis either directly to Yemen or via Somalia. This route however risked contact with international naval vessels on patrol in the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Sea.

For the last six months the Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) has begun using waters further up the Gulf between Kuwait and Iran as it looks for new ways to beat an embargo on arms shipments to fellow Shi’ites in the Houthi movement, Western and Iranian sources say.

Using this new route, Iranian ships transfer equipment to smaller vessels at the top of the Gulf, where they face less scrutiny. The transhipments take place in Kuwaiti waters and in nearby international shipping lanes, the sources said.

“Parts of missiles, launchers and drugs are smuggled into Yemen via Kuwaiti waters,” said a senior Iranian official. “The route sometimes is used for transferring cash as well.”

The official added that “what is especially smuggled recently, or to be precise in the past six months, are parts of missiles that cannot be produced in Yemen”.

Cash and drugs can be used to fund Houthi activities, the official said.

Kuwait on Wednesday denied Iran was using its waters to smuggle equipment to Houthi forces in Yemen.

A foreign ministry statement said the country’s waters were under the total control of the Kuwaiti navy and coast guard and there were no reports of suspicious movements at sea.

Kuwaiti officials had earlier not responded to questions.

Yemen is more than two years into a civil war pitting the Houthis against the government of President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, which is backed by a Saudi-led coalition. More than 10,000 people have died in fighting and a cholera epidemic has infected more than 300,000 in a country on the brink of famine.

In backing the Houthis against a coalition led by its Sunni enemy Saudi Arabia, Iran is stepping up support for a Shi’ite ally in a war whose outcome could sway the balance of power in the Middle East.


Efforts to intercept military equipment by the coalition have had limited success, with no reported maritime seizures of weapons or ammunition during 2017 so far and only a few seizures on the main land route from the east of Yemen.

Independent U.N. investigators, who monitor Yemen sanctions, told the Security Council in their latest confidential report, which Reuters has seen, that they continue to investigate potential arms trafficking routes.

They said the United Arab Emirates – which is part of the coalition – had reported 11 attacks since September 2016 against its ground forces by Houthis using drones, or UAVs, armed with explosives.

“Although Houthi-aligned media announced that the Sanaa-based Ministry of Defence could manufacture the UAV, in reality they are assembled from components supplied by an outside source and shipped into Yemen,” the report said.

The report added that the Houthis “will eventually deplete their limited stock of missiles.” This would force the Houthis to end a campaign of missile attacks against Saudi territory unless they are resupplied from external sources.

An earlier UN report in January said the Houthis needed to replenish stocks of anti-tank guided weapons.

The arms smuggling operation may not turn the tide of the conflict, but it will allow the Houthis receive stable supplies of equipment that is otherwise hard to obtain.


“The volume of the activity, I don’t call it a trade, is not very large. But it is a safe route,” a second senior Iranian official said.

“Smaller Iranian ports are being used for the activity as major ports might attract attention.”

Asked if the IRGC was involved, the second official said: “No activity goes ahead in the Gulf without the IRGC being involved. This activity involves a huge amount of money as well as transferring equipment to Iranian-backed groups in their fight against their enemies.”

A third senior Iranian official also confirmed the shipment activity and pointed to IRGC involvement.

The IRGC is Iran’s most powerful internal and external security force, with a sophisticated intelligence and surveillance network together with elite units which are playing a key role in the war in Syria in support of the government.        

The IRGC declined to comment on the arms shipments and Iranian foreign ministry officials could not immediately be reached.

Houthi officials were also not immediately available for comment but in March a Houthi leader, who declined to be identified, said accusations that Iran was smuggling weapons into Yemen were an attempt to cover up Saudi Arabia’s failure to prevail in the war there. A U.S. Navy spokesman said he had no information on the matter.

“(The territorial waters of) Iran, Kuwait and Iraq in the northern Persian Gulf butt up against each other,” said Gerry Northwood, of maritime security firm MAST and a former British Royal Navy captain who has commanded warships in the region.

“There is still plenty of room for smugglers to operate. In fact the whole Persian Gulf is a hive of small boat activity. And this is in an area where one man’s illegitimate trade is another’s legitimate trade.”

Hundreds of ships sail through the Bab el-Mandeb and Strait of Hormuz every day – waterways which pass along the coasts of Yemen and Iran. Many are small dhows, which are hard to track.

Western shipping and security sources said that since March there had been an increase in suspicious activity involving Iranian-flagged ships in waters near Kuwait.

“Waters around Kuwait are being used by Iranians to funnel … equipment to Yemen,” said an international arms dealer based in the Mediterranean area with knowledge of the matter.

“Consignments are either transferred to other craft, such as small boats, or they are dropped near buoys to be picked up by passing ships.”

The arms dealer, who declined to be identified, said there were many coves and deserted bays in neighboring Iraq that also provided opportunities for this type of covert activity.

The Western sources said consignments were transported from smaller Iranian ports across the sea lanes near Kuwait, which is 100 nautical miles from Iran.

To avoid detection, the mainly Iranian-flagged vessels switch off their identification transponders, sometimes for days. They rendezvous with other ships or drop supplies close to buoys, so the consignments can be recovered for onward transport, the sources said.

Report 2


Source: Conflict Armament Research

Key Findings

During a four-week period in February and March 2016, the warships HMAS Darwin, FS Provence, and USS Sirocco, operating as part of the multi-national Combined Maritime Forces (CMF), intercepted three dhows transporting weapons in the Arabian Sea.

The dhows, and a significant quantity of military materiel on board, are suspected to have

originated in Iran and were destined for Somalia and Yemen.

Conflict Armament Research (CAR) obtained photographs of a cross-section of the weapons

seized from two of the dhows (HMAS Darwin and FS Provence), including a complete list of serial numbers of weapons from one of the seizures (FS Provence). In October 2016, CAR also documented military equipment that United Arab Emirates (UAE) forces had reportedly recovered in Yemen.

A portion of this materiel matches weapons recovered from one of the seized dhows (FS Provence).

CAR’s analysis of the seized materiel, and its investigations into the dhow trade around the

Horn of Africa, suggests the existence of a weapon pipeline extending from Iran to Somalia and Yemen, which involves the transfer, by dhow, of significant quantities of Iranian-manufactured weapons and weapons that plausibly derive from Iranian stockpiles.

All three interdictions involved significant weapon seizures, with the weight of evidence pointing to Iran as the original source and Somalia and/or Yemen as the intended destinations.

ርእሰ-ዓንቀጽ ሰዲህኤ

“From the point of view of justice, the opinion of the Eritrean people must receive consideration. Nevertheless, the strategic interest of the US in the red sea basin and consideration of security and world peace make it necessary, that this country has to be linked with our ally Ethiopia. /ብመንጽር ፍትሒ፡  ርኢቶ ህዝቢ ኤርትራ ኣብ ግምት ክኣቱ መተገበአ። እንተኾነ ኣብ ጋብላ ቀይሕ ባሕሪ ዘሎ እስትራተጅያዊ ረብሓ ኣሜሪካን ናይቲ ከባቢ ድሕነትን ናይ ዓለም ሰላም ኣገዳስነትን ኣብ ግምት ብምእታው፡ ምስ መሓዛ ኣሜሪካ ዝኾነት ኢትዮጵያ ክትቁረን ኣለዋ።/” (ሽዑ ኣብ ሕቡራት ሃገራት ኣምበሳድር ኣሜሪካ ዝነበረ፡ ጆን ፎስተር ዳሉስ ብ1952 ካብ ዝበሎ።)


“1) ኣብቲ ምስ ኢትዮጵያ ዝተኸየደ 19 ሺሕ መንእሰያት ዝተሰውእሉ ዳሕረዋይ ውግእ ኣይከሰርናን፡ 2) ነቲ ልዕሊ 60 ሺሕ ዝተሰውእሉ፡ ናይ 30 ዓመታት መሪር ቃልሲ ምእንቲ ናጽነት፡ ሰለስተ ወለዶታት ኣባኺንና፡ 3) ኤርትራን ኢትዮጵያን ክልተ ህዝቢ`ዩ ዝብል ታሪኽን ሓቅን ዘይፈልጥ`ዩ” (ኢሳይያስ ኣብ መገሽኡ ናብ ኢትዮጵያ ዝበሎ)

ከምቲ “ትውሕጦ እንተበልኩዋስ ትጐስሞ” ዝበሃል፡ ኢሳያስ ኣፈወርቂ፡ ምስ ቀዳማይ ሚኒስተር ኢትዮጵያ ሓድሽ ዕርክነት ካብ ዝጅምር ንነጀው፡ ብዙሓት ኣገረምትን ንኤርትራዊ ልኡላውነት ኣብ ሓደጋ ዘእትዉን ቃላት ክድርቢ ጸኒሑ እዩ። መብዛሕትና ኤርትራውያን’ኳ እዚ ረብሓ ህዝቢ ዘይረብሓኡ ዲክታቶር፡ ከምኡ ክብል ካብ ግምትና ወጻኢ እንተዘይነበረ፡ ውሑዳት “ደገፍቱ ኢና” በሃልቲ ውልቃውነት ዝዓንደረሎም ግና፡ ነቲ ቅድም ኣብ ፈቐዶ መድረኻት፡ ኮነ ኢሉ ዝበሎ ክነሱ፡ ከም ምላቕ ቆጺሮም “ድሕሪ ሕጅስ ኣይክደገሞን ግዲ ይኸውን” ዝብል ግምት ነይርዎም። ንሱ እቲ ጽሉልን ዘራግን ሰብኣይ ግና፡ ኣብዚ ቀረባ መዓልቲ ናብ ኢትዮጵያ ከይዱ፡ ናይ ብሄር ኦሮሞ ባህላዊ ክዳን ምስ ለበሰ፡ ከም ኣመሉ ብዘይርጉእ መንፈስ፡ ነቲ ህዝብና ተቓሊሱ ክንዲ ነጻነትን ልኡላውነትን ዝኣክል፡ ክቡር ኣኽሊል ዝደፈኣሉ መዋእል “ሰለስተ ወለዶታት ኣባኺንና” ብዝብል ልቢ ናይቶም ንነጻነት ኤርትራ ተሳዒሮም እምበር፡ ፈትዮም ዘይተቐበልዎ ኢትዮጵያዊ ወናገት ብዘረስርስ ላዛ ክገልጾ እንከሎ ሰሚዕናዮ። እዚ ምስቲ ኣብቲ ናይ 1998-2000 ውግእ ኤርትራን ኢትዮጵያን ኣይከሰርናን ምባሉ ደሚርካ ክምዘን እንከሎ፡ ክሳብ ክንደይ ካብ ባህጊ ህዝቢ ኤርትራ ይርሕቕ ምህላዉ ምግማት ኣየጸግምን፡

ወዮ በቲ ገለ ኤርትራውያን ምዃኖም ዘጠራጥሩ ወገናት፡ ነቲ ናይ 30 ዓመታት ህዝባዊ  ቃልስና፡ ተራ  ሽፍትነት፡ ናይቶም ናይቲ መስርሕ ስዉኣት ከኣ ተራ ምዉታት’ዮም፡ ብምባሎም ቆሲሉ ዘሎ፡ ናይቲ ደቁ ዝገበረ ህዝቢ ኤርትራ ልቢ፡ እዚ ዲክታተር መሊሱ ጐዲኡ ኣድምይዎ እዩ። እዚ ከኣ ከምቲ “ካብ ዓበቕካስ ተቖናደፍ” ዝበሃል፡ መሊሱ ነቲ ናይ ጥልመት መንገዱ’ዩ ዘጋድዶ ዘሎ። ወዮም “ኮንደኾን ናብ ልቡ ይምለስ” ዝብል ተስፋ ዝነበሮም ተደናገጽቱ፡ ደጊም  ካብዚ ዲክታቶር ተስፋ ቆሪጾም ኣብ መስርዕ ምድሓን ሃገርን ህዝብን ክጸንዑ ዝጽውዕ’ውን እዩ።

“ኤርትራዊ ልኡላውነት ብቃልሲ ህዝቢ ዝተረጋገጸ፡ በዕጽምቲ ስዉኣት ዝተነደቀን ብደሞም ዝተለሰነን ነባሪ መዘክርን ታሪኽን ስለ ዝኾነ፡ ብድሕሪ ሕጂ ብዘይ ድሌትን ፈቓድን ህዝቢ ብኢደወነናዊ ወስታ፡ ንድሕሪት ኣይምለስን እዩ፡ ዝብል መደምደምታ ኩልና ኤርትራውያን እንሰማመዓሉ እዩ። እንተኾነ ዝሓለፈ ተመኩሮናን ሎሚ ንርእዮ ዘለና ዘይጥዑይ ምልክታትን በቲ ኣቐዲሙ ዝተጠቕሰ መደምደምታ ጥራይ ተኣማሚንና ኣብ እነራጥጠሉ ኩነታት ከም ዘየለና ክንርዳእ ከድልየና እዩ። ታሪኽና ከም ዝሕብረና፡ ኣብ ሓደ መድረኽ፡ ጉዳይና ንድሌት፡ ምርጫን ባህግን ህዝቢ ኤርትራ ጓስዩ፡ ናይ ሓያላት ከባብያዊ ረብሓ ኣቐዲሙ ስለ ዝተቓነየ ክሳብ ክንደይ ኣብ ሓደጋ ከም ዝወደቕና ንሕና ኤርትራውያን ንዝክሮ ኢና። እዚ ተመኩሮዚ ሎሚ እውን ነቒሕናን ተወዲብናን እንተዘይዓቂብናዮ ዘይድገመሉ ምኽንያት የብሉን። ናይ ኢሳያስ  ኣፈወርቂ ወልደፍደፍን ናይ ግዳም ኣዕንገልቱ  ውጥም ቅልቅልን ከኣ ከነቕልበሉ ዝግበኣና መጠንቀቕታ እዩ።

ኣብዚ እዋንዚ፡ ኩሉ’ቲ ዘራጊቶ ኢሳያስ ዝገብሮ ተዋሰኦታት መዳህለሊ ኮይኑ፡ ሓቀኛ ዕላማኡ ኣብ ስልጣን ምቕጻል ጥራይ እዩ። ናይ መራሒ ሱዳን ዝነበረ፡ ዑመር ኣልበሽር ዕድል ከመይ ከም ዝኾነ እንዳረአየ፡ ኣብ ኢድ ህዝቢ ኤርትራ ዝወድቀሉ ኣፍደገ ክኸፍት ባህርያዊ ኣይኮነን። ኢሳያስ ነዚ ዓይኑ ዘይሓስየሉ፡ ኣብ ስልጣን ናይ ምቕጻል ሕልሙ ብጽቡቕ ድሌትን ፈቓድን ህዝቢ ኤርትራ ክረኽቦ ዝነበሮ ዕድል ከም ዝሃደሞ ይፈልጥ እዩ። ምኽንያቱ ግብሩ ስለ ዝፈልጥ። ስለዚ በቲ ሓደ ወገን ብዘይካ ኣብ ስልጣን ምቕጻል ካልእ መተካእታ ካብ ዘይሃለዎ፡ በቲ ካልእ ወገን ከኣ፡ ነዚ ህጣራ ድሌቱ ብፈቓድ ህዝቢ ኤርትራ ከውሕሶ ዘይክእል ምዃኑ ካብ ተረድአ፡ ካልእ ነዚ ጻምኡ ኣብ ምርዋይ ዝሕግዞ ሓይሊ ዳምዳም ክብል ባህርያዊ እዩ።

ኢሳያስ ኩሉ መደርኡ፡ መገሻኡን ስምምዓቱን ናብዚ ዘቕነዐ እዩ። እቶም ነዚ ጥሙሑ ኣብ ምውሓስ ዝሕግዝዎ ወገናት ንጽድቂ ዝሰርሑን ዘስንቑን ዘይኮኑስ፡ ኣብቲ ብዋጋ ልኡላውነትና ከረጋግጽዎ ዝብህጉ ከባብያዊ ረብሓ ይሕግዝ እዩ ኢሎም ስለ ዝኣመንሉ እዩ። እቲ ኢሳያስ ኣብ ፈቐዶ መድረኽ ኣብ ኢትዮጵያ ድዩ ካለኦት ሃገራት ከይዱ፡ ዘስምዖ ዘይርጡብ መደረታት እምበኣር፡  ክልተ ብልሒ ዘለዎ እዩ። በቲ ሓደ ወገን ንህዝቢ ኤርትራ ይጠልሞ ከም ዘሎ ክመላኽት እንከሎ፡ በቲ ካልእ ገጽ ከኣ፡ ነቶም ዞባዊ ረብሓና ኤርትራዊ ልኡላውነት ብምኽላስ እዩ ዝረጋገጽ ዝብሉ ወገናት ከኣ ተኣማንነቱ እዩ ዝገልጸሎም ዘሎ።

እቶም ኢሳያስ ከምቲ ዝለኣኽዎ ዝኾነሎም ዘሎ ናይ ግዳም ወገናት፡ ክንእድዎ፡ ከቀባጥርሉን ኣዋርቕ ክሽልምዎን እዮም። ምናልባት እውን ካልእ ዘይበልዖ ናይ ሕልሚ እንጀራ ይሓልምሉ ይኾኑ። ንሕናኸ? ንሕና ከኣ “በቲ ካልእና ደኣ ንግበር እምበር፡ ኤርትራዊ ልኡላውነትናስ ኣይክኹለፍን’ዩ” ብዝብል ዕግበት ከየራጠጥናን ከየስተርሓናን፡ ነቲ ክፍጠር ዝኽእል ውዲት ትኩራት ኮይና ክንቋመቶ ይግበኣና። እዚ ልዕሊ ኩሉ ዝስራዕ፡ ኤርትራዊ ኣጀንዳ ስለ ዝኾነ፡ በቲ መጻኢት ኤርትራ ከመይ ትመራሕ ዝብል ዘለና ዘይመሰረታዊ ፍልልያት ከይተሻበብና፡ ብሓደ ቃልን ስሙር ቅልጽምን ክንቃለሶ ይግበኣና። ኣብዚ ደጋፍን ተቓዋምን ስርዓት ዝበሃል የለን። ምኽንያቱ እቲ ኣጀንዳ ልዕልቲ ኣብ ህልውቲ ኤርትራ ዝንጸባረቕ ናይ ኣተሓሳስባ ፍልልይ ዝስራዕ ስለ ዝኾነ። ግደና ኣብ ምዕቃብ ልኡላውነት መሰረታዊ ስለ ዝኾነ ኢና ከኣ “ታሪኽ ይደገምዶ ኣይድገምን ኣብ ኢድና’ዩ” ንብል ዘለና።

Friday, 03 January 2020 19:45

Radio Dimtsi Harnnet Kassel 02.01.2020

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Thursday, 02 January 2020 05:08

Eritrea Liberty Magazine Issue NO. 60

Written by
Thursday, 02 January 2020 04:58

Eritrea Liberty Magazine Issue NO. 60

Written by


ኤርትራ ዋናኣ፡ በዓል ብዙሕ ቋንቋ፡ ሃይማኖት፡ ባህሊ፡ ኣውራጃን ካልእ መግለጺ ብዙሕነትን ህዝባ ምዃኑ ብሩህ እዩ። እዚ ህዝባ ኣብ ዝተፈላለየ መዳያት ስራሕ፡ ሓረስታይ፡ ነጋዳይ፡ መጓሰ ሰራሕ መንግስትን ዝተዋፈረ እዩ። ኤርትራውያን ኣብዚ እዋንዚ ኣብ ገዛእ እታ ብቓልሶም ዘምጽእዋ ልኡላዊት ሀገረ-ኤርትራ፡ መጻኢኦም ንምጥጣሕ ብሞያኦም፡ ብጾታኦም ወይ ብዕድሚኦም ተወዲቦም ብዛዕባ ዝኾነ ሃገራዊ ጉዳይ፡ ናይ ሓባር ድምጾም ናይ ምስማዕ መሰል የብሎምን። ምናልባት መንግስቲ ህግዲፍ  መሳርሒ ክኾንዎ፡ ንሱ ብዝመርጾ ሕግን ዕማምን ዝውድቦምን ብናቱ ሰባት ዘምረሖምን፡ ስማዊ ብሳንብኡ ዘተንፍሱ፡ ውዳበታት ይህልዉዎ ይኾኑ። ማሕበራት ደቂ ኣንስትዮን መንእሰያትን ናይዚ ኣብነት እዮም።

ኣብዚ መዳይዚ ሓይልታት ምክልኻል ኤርትራ ብዝምድናዊ ኣመዛዝና፡ ዝሓሸ ውዳበን ዕጥቅን ዘለዎ ትካል እዩ። ከምኡ ዝኾነሉ ምኽንያት ከኣ እቲ ኣብ ስልጣን ዘሎ ጉጅለ በዚ ትካልዚ እንዳተሓለወ ኣብ ስልጣን ናይ ምቕጻል ሕልሚ ስለ ዘለዎ እዩ። ምስዚ ንህዝብናን ሃገርናን ዘጋጥሞም ዘሎ ዓማሚ ጸገም ከኣ፡ ሰራዊት ኤርትራ፡ ካብቲ መሳርሒ ንክኾኖ ዘሰልጥኖን ዘዕጠቖን ጉጅለ፡ ንጉዳያት ዝተፈልየ ኣመዛዝና ክህልዎ ባህርያዊ እዩ፡ ዝብል እምነት ስለ ዘለና ኢና፡ ኣብ ርእሲቲ ባዕሉ ዝርደኦ እነዘኻኽሮ።

ኤርትራውያን ብዛዕባ ኣተናትናን ኣገላልጻን ህልዊ ኩነታት ሃገርና ኣብ ግዝኣት ህግዲፍ ምናልባት ኣዝዮም ንኡሳት ፍልልያት ይህልዎም ይኸውን። ብዓብይኡ ግና ህልዊ ሓፈሻዊ ኩነታት ኤርትራ፡ ፍረ ቃልሲ ህዝቢ ዝተጨውየላን ሕድሪ ስዉኣት ዝተጠልመላን፡ ህዝቢ ብዘይፈልጦ ፖሊስታት ዝመሓደረላን ብዘይመረጾም ጉሒላታት ዝመሓደረላን፡ ህዝቢ መሰል ሓሳቡ ምግላጽ፡ ምውዳብን ናጽነት እምነትን ዝተነፍገላ፡ ከመዚ ኢልካ ከተዘንትዎ ዘጸግም ሕጽረት ዘይኮነስ ስእነት መንግስታዊ ኣገልግሎት ዝሳዕረረላ፡ ወልቀ-ሰብ ልዕሊ ሕጊ ኮይኑ ኩሉ መሰል ህዝባ ዝገፈላ፡ ብዓብይኡ ከኣ ብዕድመ ዝደፍኡ ክሓሙ እንከለዉ ዘልዕሎም፡ ክሞቱ እንከለዉ ከኣ ጉድጓድ ኩዒቱ ሓመድ ኣዳም ዘልብሶም መንእሰይ ዝስኣኑላ ሃገር ኮይና ከም ዘላ መላእ ህዝቢ ኮነ ሰራዊት ኤርትራ ዝረዳድእሉ ህልዊ ሓቂ እዩ።

ወዮ ከምቲ ለባማት “መነባብሮይ ኢልካ እንተ ተቐቢልካይ፡ መቓብር እውን ይመዉቕ” ዝብልዎ ኮይኑ እምበር፡ ህልዊ ኩነታት ሃገርና ጸልማት እዩ። ነዚ ንዓለም ዘገርም ህይወት ኤርትራውያን ቀይርካ ናብ ንቡር ንምምላሰ ኣብ ዝግበር ቃልሲ ኩልና ኣብ ዓዲ ኮነ ኣብ ወጻኢ ዘለና፡ ኣብ ዝተፈላለየ ሙያ ዝተዋፈርና ኤርትራውያን እቲ እንብህጎ ለውጢ ንክገሃድ ከነብርክት ናይ ግድን ኣብ ዝኾነሉ ህሞት ኢና ዘለና። ኣብዚ መስርሕ ግደ’ቲ  ሰራዊት  ኣዝዩ ዕዙዝ እዩ። ግደ ሰራዊት ዕዙዝ ዝኾነሉ ምኽንያት፡ ብመሰረቱ እዚ ትካልዚ ካብቲ ካልእ ህዝቢ ምናልባት እውን ብዝለዓለ ግዳይ ወጽዓ ጉጅለ ህግዲፍ ስለ ዝኾነ እዩ። ብሰንኪ እቲ ግዳይ ምዃኑ፡ ፈትዩ ዘይኮነስ ተገዲዱ ካብታ ክሃንጻ ዝግበኦ ሃገሩ ይስደድ ምህላዉ ሓደ መረጋገጺ እዩ። ገለ ነቲ ኩነታት ዝከታተሉ ወገናት ኣብዛ ትማሊ ዘፋነናያ ዓመት 2019 ኣስታት 20 ሺሕ ኣባላት ሰራዊት ኤርትራ ዝነበሩ ብወገን ኢትዮጵያ ከም ዝተሰዱ ይምስክሩ ኣለዉ።

ነቲ ሰራዊት ከቢድ ሓላፍነት ዘሰክሞ ግና እዚ ጥራይ ኣይኮነን። ምስቲ ካልእ ክፍሊ ሕብረተሰብ ኤርትራ ክወዳደር እንከሎ እቲ ወጻዒ ጉጅለ ንገዛእ ርእሱ ተሓልዩ ቀጻልነቱ ከውሕስ ክበል ብዝኸፍቶ ጸቢብ ዕድል ዝሓሸ ናይ ምውዳብን ተቐራሪብካ ናይ ምልዛብ ጸቢብ ዕድል ኣለዎ። እዚ ክንብል እንከለና ግና ሰራዊት ኤርትራ እውን ኣብ መጻወዲያ ዝተፈላለየ ናይ ስለያ ቀጸላታት ምህላዉ ዘንጊዕና ኣይኮናን። ናተይ ኢሉ ሓላፍነት ወሲዱ እንተ መኪትዎ ግና ክሰግሮ ዝኽእል ምዃኑ ክሰሓት የብሉን። ህዝቢ ኤርትራ ከምቲ ኣደታትን ኣቦታትን ናይዚ ሰራዊት ክቡር ህይወት ከፊሎም ልኡላዊት ሃገረ-ኤርትራ ዘውሓሱ፡ እዚ ህልዊ ሰራዊት ከኣ፡ ዲሞክራስያዊ ስርዓት ክተክል ስለ እንጽበዮ፡ ናይ ህዝቢ በዓል ዕዳ እዩ። እቲ ዕዳ ግና ገንዘባዊ ወይ ካልእ ነገራዊ ዘይኮነ፡ ህዝብን ሃገርን ናይ ምድሓን ተወፋይነትን ትብዓትን እዩ።

ናትና ደኣ ምስቲ ናይ ካለኦት ክወዳደር እንከሎ ይገድድ እምበር፡ ከማና ብሰንኪ ሕድሪ ህዝቢ ዝጠለሙ ሃንጐሊማ መንግስታት ክጭቆኑ ዝጸንሑን ጌና ዝጭቆኑ ዘለዉን ህዝብታት ብዙሓት እዮም። ተመኩሮ ናይቶም ካብ ወጽዓ ወጺኦም፡ ሓድሽ ዲሞክራስያዊ ህይወት ክምስርቱ ተተይ ዝብሉ ዘለዉ ህዝብታት ምስ እንድህስስ ከኣ፡ ግደ ሰራዊት ኣብዚ ዘለናዮ መድረኽ፡ ኣንተ ንልምዓት እንተ ንጥፍኣት ኣዝዩ ዕዙዝ ኮይኑ ንረኽቦ። እዚ ተመኩሮዚ ንሰራዊት ኤርትራ፡ ህዝብን ሃገርን ናይ ምድሓን ቅዱስ ቅንእን ኒሕን ክሓድሮ ሓላፍነት ዘሰክሞ እዩ። ባዕሉ እቲ ሰራዊት ርሑቕ ከይከደ፡ ተመኩሮ፡ ሱዳን፡ ግብጺ፡ ቱኒዝያን ካለኦት ሃገራትን ሃሰስ እንተ ኢሉ ነቲ ሓቂ ክረኽቦ ይኽእል እዩ። እዚ ንሰራዊት ኤርትራ ነሰክሞ ዘለና ዕማም፡ ኣብ ኤርትራ ኣይተፈተነን ማለትና ኣይኮነን። እቲ ብጉጅለ ህግዲፍ ጸቢብ ሃይማኖታዊ ትርጉም ክወሃቦ ዝተፈተነ፡ ንቕሎ ወዲ ዓልን ብጾቱን ዝዝንጋዕ ኣይኮነን። ካለኦት ተፈቲኖም ከይተዘርበሎም ዝቐሃሙ ንቕሎታት ከም ዝነበሩ እውን ካብ ሰራዊት ኤርትራ ዝተሰወረ ኣይኮንን።  በዚ ኮነ በቲ፡ ሰራዊት ኤርትራ ብሰራዊት ነቑሉ ብዘይተዓወተ ተመኩሮታት ክስንብድ ኣይግበኦን። ኣብ ክንዳኡ ካብቲ ዘይተዓወተ ፈተነታት ተማሂሩን ተመኲሩን ኣተሓዛኡ ከጸብቕ’ዩ ዝግበኦ።

ኣብ ምድሓን ህዝብን ሃገርን መሪሕ ሓላፍነት ክወስዱ ይግበኦም ዝነበሩ፡ ናይ ቀደም ተጋደልቲ፡ ናይ ሎሚ ላዕለዎት ኣዘዝቲ ሰራዊት ምንባሮም ዝሰሓት ኣይኮነን። እንተኾነ እዞም ኣብ ቃልሲ ምእንቲ ነጻነት ቅያ ከም ዝሰርሑ ዝንገረሎም፡ ገዳይም ተጋደልቲ ኣዘዝቲ ሰራዊት ኤርትራ፡ ሎሚ ክልተሳብ ተራእዮም እዮም። ትማሊ ምእንቲ ህዝብን ሃገርን ተበዓት ዝነበሩ፡ ሎሚ ናይቶም “ሓደራኹም” እናበልዎም ዝተሰውኡ ሰማእታት ኤርትራን ዝኣተዉዎ ሕድርን ጠሊሞም፡ “ዘበን ውራውራ ነብስኻ ኣይተዕብራ” ኢሎም፡ ደድሕሪ ረብሓ ዝጐዩ፡ ንዲክታተርን ዲክታተርነትን ዝረዓሙ ኮይኖም ስለ ዘለዉ እቲ ሓፋሽ ሰራዊት ብኣኣቶም’ዩ ክጅምር ዝግበኦ። ብመንጽር’ዚ ካብቶም ቅድሚ ህዝቢ ከብዶም ዘቐድሙ ቀቢጹ “ኣነስ ምስቲ ሰራሕ ታሪኽ ህዝበይ’የ” ክብል መድረኽ ይጠልቦ ኣሎ። ከምቲ “ገረብ ብሓኽላ” ዝበሃል፡ ነዚ ኣብ ላዕለዋይ መዓርግ ዝደየብን ብጹርራ ዝተዓሸወን፡ ህዝብን ሃብቲ ሃገርን ዘበሳብስ ዘሎ ወገን፡ እቲ ሰራዊት ኣብ ክንዲ ደሓር ዝጠዓስ፡ ሎሚ ክደፍሮ መድረኽ ይጠልቦ ኣሎ። ሰራዊት ኤርትራ ነዚ ከቢድ ህዝባዊ ሕድሪ ደጋጊሙ ከስተማቕሮን ከስተብህለሉን ከኣ ኣብ ምጅማር’ዚ ሓድሽ ዓመት ንጽውዖ ኣለና።

December 30, 2019 (KHARTOUM) - A Sudanese court handed death sentences to 29 members of the security service on Monday for their role in the torture and murder of a political detainee during the popular uprising against the former regime.

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Ahmed Khair

Ahmed Khair, a school teacher in Kassala, in eastern Sudan was detained on 31 January and died two days later while in detention last February. His case was a symbol of the crackdown and violence practised by the former regime against peaceful protesters.

While hundreds of people gathered outside the court waving flags with the pictures of the slain in their hands, the Omdurman court found the intelligence officers guilty of deadly abuse against Ahmad al-Khair, who was beaten and tortured to death in detention.

"According to what has been proven to the court, the twenty-nine defendants have been convicted under Articles 21 (criminal participation) and 130 (willful killing) of the Sudanese criminal law, and it has been decided that they are sentenced to death by hanging," said Judge al-Sadiq Abdel-Rahman.

In line with Islamic law, the judge further asked Khair’s family if they want to forgive the defendants, but his brother Saad who was present at the court declined the pardon.

"We want retribution," Saad said as tears filled his eyes.

Speaking to reporters outside the court, he hailed the verdict saying it was a day of "victory for the revolution".

The justice for the crimes committed by the security services against the civilians during the four-month protests remains a hot issue in the country one year after the start of the revolution.

The Sudanese Professionals Association, which spearheaded the protests welcomed the rule saying it resorted confidence in the judiciary and that the families of the martyrs should be reassured as the day of justice is approaching.

The SPA was alluding to the protesters killed on 3 June by the security forces as the government is awaiting the findings of an independent investigation committee.



Tuesday, 31 December 2019 19:43

10 Conflicts to Watch in 2020

Written by
A member of the Afghan security forces stands guard next to damaged army vehicles after a Taliban attack in Ghazni city, Afghanistan on 15 August 2018. REUTERS/Mustafa Andaleb

Friends and foes alike no longer know where the United States stands. As Washington overpromises and underdelivers, regional powers are seeking solutions on their own – both through violence and diplomacy.

Local conflicts serve as mirrors for global trends. The ways they ignite, unfold, persist, and are resolved reflect shifts in great powers’ relations, the intensity of their competition, and the breadth of regional actors’ ambitions. They highlight issues with which the international system is obsessed and those toward which it is indifferent. Today these wars tell the story of a global system caught in the early swell of sweeping change, of regional leaders both emboldened and frightened by the opportunities such a transition presents.

Only time will tell how much of the U.S.’s transactional unilateralism, contempt for traditional allies, and dalliance with traditional rivals will endure – and how much will vanish with Donald Trump’s presidency. Still, it would be hard to deny that something is afoot. The understandings and balance of power on which the global order had once been predicated – imperfect, unfair, and problematic as they were – are no longer operative. Washington is both eager to retain the benefits of its leadership and unwilling to shoulder the burdens of carrying it. As a consequence, it is guilty of the cardinal sin of any great power: allowing the gap between ends and means to grow. These days, neither friend nor foe knows quite where America stands.

The roles of other major powers are changing, too. China exhibits the patience of a nation confident in its gathering influence, but in no hurry to fully exercise it. It chooses its battles, focusing on self-identified priorities: domestic control and suppression of potential dissent (as in Hong Kong, or the mass detention of Muslims in Xinjiang); the South and East China Seas; the brewing technological tug of war with the U.S., of my own colleague Michael Kovrig – unjustly detained in China for over a year – has become collateral damage. Elsewhere, its game is a long one.

Russia, in contrast, displays the impatience of a nation grateful for the power these unusual circumstances have brought and eager to assert it before time runs out. Moscow’s policy abroad is opportunistic – seeking to turn crises to its advantage – though today that is perhaps as much strategy as it needs. Portraying itself as a truer and more reliable partner than Western powers, it backs some allies with direct military support while sending in private contractors to Libya and sub-Saharan Africa to signal its growing influence.

To all of these powers, conflict prevention or resolution carries scant inherent value.

To all of these powers, conflict prevention or resolution carries scant inherent value. They assess crises in terms of how they might advance or hurt their interests, how they could promote or undermine those of their rivals. Europe could be a counterweight, but at precisely the moment when it needs to step into the breach, it is struggling with domestic turbulence, discord among its leaders, and a singular preoccupation with terrorism and migration that often skews policy.

The consequences of these geopolitical trends can be deadly. Exaggerated faith in outside assistance can distort local actors’ calculations, pushing them toward uncompromising positions and encouraging them to court dangers against which they believe they are immune. In Libya, a crisis risks dangerous metastasis as Russia intervenes on behalf of a rebel general marching on the capital, the U.S. sends muddled messages, Turkey threatens to come to the government’s rescue, and Europe – a stone’s throw away – displays impotence amid internal rifts. In Venezuela, the government’s obstinacy, fuelled by faith that Russia and China will cushion its economic downfall, clashes with the opposition’s lack of realism, powered by U.S. suggestions it will oust President Nicolás Maduro.

Syria – a conflict not on this list – has been a microcosm of all these trends: there, the U.S. combined a hegemon’s bombast with a bystander’s pose. Local actors (such as the Kurds) were emboldened by U.S. overpromising and then disappointed by U.S. underdelivery. Meanwhile, Russia stood firmly behind its brutal ally, while others in the neighbourhood (namely, Turkey) sought to profit from the chaos.

The bad news might contain a sliver of good. As leaders understand the limits of allies’ backing, reality sinks in. Saudi Arabia, initially encouraged by the Trump administration’s apparent blank check, flexed its regional muscle until a series of brazen Iranian attacks and noticeable U.S. nonresponses showed the kingdom the extent of its exposure, driving it to seek a settlement in Yemen and, perhaps, de-escalation with Iran.

To many Americans, Ukraine evokes a sordid tale of quid pro quo and impeachment politics. But for its new president at the center of that storm, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, a priority is to end the conflict in that country’s east – an objective for which he appears to recognise the need for Kyiv to compromise.

Others might similarly readjust views: the Afghan government and other anti-Taliban powerbrokers, accepting that U.S. troops won’t be around forever; Iran and the Syrian regime, seeing that Russia’s newfound Middle East swagger hardly protects them against Israeli strikes. These actors may not all be entirely on their own, but with their allies’ support only going so far, they might be brought back down to earth. There is virtue in realism.

There’s another trend that warrants attention: the phenomenon of mass protests across the globe. It is an equal-opportunity discontent, shaking countries governed by both the left and right, democracies and autocracies, rich and poor, from Latin America to Asia and Africa. Particularly striking are those in the Middle East – because many observers thought that the broken illusions and horrific bloodshed that came in the wake of the 2011 uprisings would dissuade another round.

Protesters have learned lessons, settling in for the long haul and, for the most part, avoiding violence that plays in the hands of those they contest. Political and military elites have learned, too, of course – resorting to various means to weather the storm. In Sudan, arguably one of this past year’s better news stories, protests led to long-serving autocrat Omar al-Bashir’s downfall and ushered in a transition that could yield a more democratic and peaceful order. In Algeria, meanwhile, leaders have merely played musical chairs. In too many other places, they have cracked down. Still, in almost all, the pervasive sense of economic injustice that brought people onto the streets remains. If governments new or old cannot address that, the world should expect more cities ablaze this coming year.

1. Afghanistan

More people are being killed as a result of fighting in Afghanistan than in any other current conflict in the world. Yet there may be a window this coming year to set in motion a peace process aimed at ending the decades-long war.

Levels of bloodshed have soared over the past two years. Separate attacks by Taliban insurgents and Islamic State militants have rocked cities and towns across the country. Less visible is the bloodshed in the countryside. Washington and Kabul have stepped up air assaults and special-forces raids, with civilians often bearing the brunt of violence. Suffering in rural areas is immense.

Continuing with the status quo offers only the prospect of endless war.

Amid the uptick in violence, presidential elections took place in late September. Preliminary results, announced on 22 December, give incumbent President Ashraf Ghani a razor-thin margin over the 50 per cent needed to avoid a run-off. Final results, following adjudication of complaints, aren’t expected before late January. Ghani’s main opponent, Abdullah Abdullah, whose challenge to results based on widespread fraud in the 2014 election led to a protracted crisis and eventually a power-sharing deal, is crying foul this time too. Whether the dispute will lead to a second round of voting is unclear, but either way it will likely consume Afghan leaders into 2020. 

Last year did, however, see some light in U.S.-Taliban diplomacy. For the first time since the war began, Washington has prioritised reaching a deal with the insurgents. After months of quiet talks, U.S. Envoy Zalmay Khalilzad and Taliban leaders agreed on and initialed a draft text. Under the deal, the U.S. pledged to pull its troops out of Afghanistan – the primary Taliban demand – and, in return, the insurgents promised to break from al-Qaeda, prevent Afghanistan from being used for plotting attacks abroad, and enter negotiations with the Afghan government as well as other key power brokers.

Hopes were dashed when Trump abruptly declared the talks dead in early September. He had invited Taliban leaders to Camp David, along with Ghani, and when the insurgents declined to come unless the agreement was signed first, Trump invoked a Taliban attack that killed a U.S. soldier as a reason to nix the agreement his envoy had inked.

After a prisoner swap in November appeared to have overcome Trump’s resistance, U.S. diplomats and Taliban representatives have started talking again, though whether they will return to the same understanding remains unclear. In reality, the U.S. has no better option than pursuing a deal with the Taliban. Continuing with the status quo offers only the prospect of endless war, while precipitously pulling U.S. forces out without an agreement could herald a return to the multifront civil war of the 1990s and even worse violence.

Any deal should pave the way for talks among Afghans, which means tying the pace of the U.S. troop withdrawal not only to counter-terrorism goals but also to the Taliban’s good-faith participation in talks with the Afghan government and other powerful Afghan leaders. A U.S.-Taliban agreement would mark only the beginning of a long road to a settlement among Afghans, which is a prerequisite for peace. But it almost certainly offers the only hope of calming today’s deadliest war.

2. Yemen

In 2018, aggressive international intervention in Yemen prevented what UN officials deemed the world’s worst humanitarian crisis from deteriorating further. 2020 could offer a rare opportunity to wind down the war. That chance, however, is the product of a confluence of local, regional, and international factors and, if not seized now, may quickly fade.

The war’s human cost is painfully clear. It has directly killed an estimated 100,000 people while pushing a country that was already the Arab world’s poorest to the brink of famine. Yemen has become a critical fault line in the Middle East-wide rivalry between Iran on the one hand and the U.S. and its regional allies on the other. Yet a year after it briefly grabbed international headlines, the five-year-old conflict is at risk of slipping back out of international consciousness.

The loss of focus is the flip side of recent good news. A December 2018 deal known as the Stockholm Agreement, fostered a fragile ceasefire around the Red Sea port city of Hodeida between the internationally recognised government of President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi and the Huthi rebels who seized the capital, Sanaa, from him in September 2014. The agreement likely prevented a famine and effectively froze fighting between the two sides. Since then, the more dynamic aspects of the conflict have been a battle within the anti-Huthi front pitting southern secessionists against the Hadi government, and a cross-border war that has seen the launch of Huthi missiles and retaliatory Saudi airstrikes.

The lull in violent conflict in the second half of 2019 should not be mistaken for a new normal. The opportunity for peace should be seized now.

Today’s window of opportunity reflects movement on these latter two fronts. First, fighting between loyalists of the Southern Transitional Council (STC) and the government in August 2019 pushed the anti-Huthi bloc to the point of collapse. In response, Riyadh had little choice but to broker a truce between them to sustain its war effort. Second, in September, a missile attack on major Saudi oil production facilities – claimed by the Huthis, but widely suspected to have been launched by Tehran – highlighted the risks of a war involving the U.S., its Gulf allies, and Iran that none of them seems to want. This helped push the Saudis and Huthis to engage in talks aimed at de-escalating their conflict and removing Yemen from the playing field of the regional Saudi-Iran power struggle; both sides have significantly reduced cross-border strikes. If this leads to a UN-brokered political process in 2020, an end may be in sight.

But the opportunity could evaporate. A collapse of the government’s fragile deal with the STC in the south or of its equally vulnerable agreement with the Huthis along the Red Sea coast would upend peacemaking efforts. The Huthis’ impatience with what they consider the Saudis’ sluggishness in transitioning from de-escalation to a nationwide ceasefire, coupled with their access to a stockpile of missiles, could rapidly reignite the cross-border war. Heightening U.S.-Iranian tensions could also spill into Yemen. The lull in violent conflict in the second half of 2019, in other words, should not be mistaken for a new normal. The opportunity for peace should be seized now.

3. Ethiopia

Perhaps nowhere are both promise and peril for the coming year starker than in Ethiopia, East Africa’s most populous and influential state.

Since assuming office in April 2018, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has taken bold steps to open up the country’s politics. He has ended a decades-long standoff with neighbouring Eritrea, freed political prisoners, welcomed rebels back from exile, and appointed reformers to key institutions. He has won accolades at home and abroad – including the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize.

But enormous challenges loom. Mass protests between 2015 and 2018 that brought Abiy to power were motivated primarily by political and socio-economic grievances. But they had ethnic undertones too, particularly in Ethiopia’s most populous regions, Amhara and Oromia, whose leaders hoped to reduce the long-dominant Tigray minority’s influence. Abiy’s liberalisation and efforts to dismantle the existing order have given new energy to ethno-nationalism, while weakening the central state.

Ethnic strife across the country has surged, killing hundreds, displacing millions, and fuelling hostility among leaders of its most powerful regions. Elections scheduled for May 2020 could be violent and divisive, as candidates outbid each other in ethnic appeals for votes.

Adding to tensions is a fraught debate over the country’s ethnic federalist system, which devolves authority to regions defined along ethno-linguistic lines. The system’s supporters believe it protects group rights in a diverse country formed through conquest and assimilation. Detractors argue that an ethnically-based system harms national unity. It is past time, they say, to move beyond the ethnic politics that has long defined and divided the nation.

Ethiopia’s transition remains a source of hope and deserves all the support it can get, but also risks violently unraveling.

Abiy has generally sought a middle ground. But some recent reforms, including his merger and expansion of the ruling coalition, the Ethiopia People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), move him more firmly into the reformers’ camp. Over the coming year, he’ll have to build bridges among Ethiopian regions, even as he competes with ethno-nationalists at the ballot box. He’ll have to manage the clamor for change while placating an old guard that stands to lose.

Ethiopia’s transition remains a source of hope and deserves all the support it can get, but also risks violently unraveling. In a worst-case scenario, some warn the country could fracture as Yugoslavia did in the 1990s, with disastrous consequences for an already troubled region. Ethiopia’s international partners need to do what they can – including pressing all the country’s leaders to cut incendiary rhetoric, counselling the prime minister to proceed cautiously on his reform agenda, and offering multiyear financial aid – to help Abiy avert such an outcome.

4. Burkina Faso

Burkina Faso is the latest country to fall victim to the instability plaguing Africa’s Sahel region.

Islamist militants have been waging a low-intensity insurgency in the country’s north since 2016. The rebellion was initially spearheaded by Ansarul Islam, a group led by Ibrahim Malam Dicko, a Burkinabé citizen and local preacher. Though rooted in Burkina Faso’s north, it appeared to have close ties to jihadis in neighbouring Mali. After Dicko died in clashes with Burkinabé troops in 2017, his brother, Jafar, took over but reportedly was killed in an October 2019 airstrike.

Violence has spread, blighting much of the north and east, displacing about half a million people (of the country’s total population of 20 million) and threatening to destabilise regions further afield, including the south west. Precisely who is responsible is often murky. In addition to Ansarul Islam, jihadi groups based in Mali, including the local Islamic State and al-Qaeda franchises, now also operate in Burkina Faso. Militant strikes can be intermingled with other sources of violence, such as banditry, herder-farmer competition, or all-too-common disputes over land. Self-defence groups that have mobilised over recent years to police rural areas fuel local intercommunal conflicts. Old systems to manage disputes are breaking down, as more young people question the authority of traditional elites loyal to a state that itself is distrusted. All this makes fertile ground for militant recruitment.

Unrest in the capital, Ouagadougou, hinders efforts to curb the insurgency. People regularly take to the streets in strikes over working conditions or protests over the government’s failure to tackle rising insecurity. Elections loom in November 2020, and violence could affect their credibility and thus the next government’s legitimacy. The ruling party and its rivals accuse each other of preparing vigilantes to mobilise votes. The country appears close to collapse, yet elites focus on internecine power struggles.

Burkina Faso’s volatility matters not only because of harm inflicted on its own citizens, but because the country borders nations along West Africa’s coast. Those countries have suffered few attacks since jihadis struck resorts in Côte d’Ivoire in 2016. But some evidence, including militants’ own statements, suggest they might use Burkina Faso as a launching pad for operations along the coast or to put down roots in the northernmost regions of countries such as Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana, or Benin. In May 2019, Ivoirian authorities report having disrupted planned attacks in the country’s largest city, Abidjan. Coastal countries exhibit weaknesses militants have exploited in their northern neighbours, particularly neglected and resentful peripheries. Some – notably Côte d’Ivoire – also face contentious elections this year. This both distracts their governments and means any crisis would make them more vulnerable still.

In Burkina Faso itself, the government’s response to the expanding insurgency, relying overwhelmingly on force, has tended to make matters worse. Soldiers are often abusive, fuelling anger at the state. As is the case elsewhere in the Sahel, officials often tarnish the Fulani ethic group, particularly some nomadic subtribes, as jihadi sympathisers. Operations targeting Fulani then force them to seek protection from militants, feeding a cycle of stigmatisation and resentment.

Cooperation between Burkina Faso and its neighbours thus far has focused mostly on joint military operations. Coastal states may be gearing up to do the same. Yet governments in the region would be better off focusing as much on intelligence sharing, border controls, and policies aimed at winning over villagers in areas affected. Without those, the turmoil appears set to spread further.

5. Libya

The war in Libya risks getting worse in the coming months, as rival factions increasingly rely on foreign military backing to change the balance of power. The threat of major violence has loomed since the country split into two parallel administrations following contested elections in 2014. UN attempts at reunification faltered, and since 2016 Libya has been divided between the internationally recognised government of Prime Minister Fayez al-Sarraj in Tripoli and a rival government based in eastern Libya. The Islamic State established a small foothold but was defeated; militias fought over Libya’s oil infrastructure on the coast; and tribal clashes unsettled the country’s vast southern desert. But fighting never tipped into a broader confrontation.

Libya has long been an arena for outside competition.

Over the past year, however, it has taken a dangerous new turn. In April 2019, forces commanded by Khalifa Haftar, which are backed by the government in the east, laid siege to Tripoli, edging the country toward all-out war. Haftar claims to be combating terrorists. In reality, while some of his rivals are Islamists, they are the same militias that defeated the Islamic State, with U.S. and other Western support, three years ago.

Libya has long been an arena for outside competition. In the chaos after former leader Muammar al-Qaddafi’s 2011 overthrow, competing factions sought support from foreign sponsors. Regional rivalries overlaid the split between the two rival governments and their respective military coalitions, with Egypt and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) backing Haftar-led forces and Turkey and Qatar supporting western armed groups loyal to Sarraj.

Haftar’s latest offensive has found support not only in Cairo and Abu Dhabi but also in Moscow, which has provided Haftar military aid under the cover of a private security company. U.S. President Donald Trump, whose administration had supported the Sarraj government and UN-backed peace process since coming to office, reversed course in April 2019, following a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi. Turkey, in turn, has upped support for Tripoli, thus far helping stave off its fall to Haftar. Ankara now threatens to intervene further.

As a result, the conflict’s protagonists are no longer merely armed groups in Tripoli fending off an assault by a wayward military commander. Instead, Emirati drones and airplanes, hundreds of Russian private military contractors, and African soldiers recruited into Haftar’s forces confront Turkish drones and military vehicles, raising the specter of an escalating proxy battle on the Mediterranean.

The proliferation of actors also stymies efforts to end the bloodshed. A UN-led attempt in Berlin to bring the parties back to the table appears to be petering out. Whether the peace conference that the UN and Germany hoped to convene in early 2020 will take place is unclear. For their part, Europeans have been caught flat-footed. Their main concern has been to check the flow of migrants, but disagreements among leaders over how to weigh in have allowed other players to fuel a conflict that directly undercuts Europe’s interest in a stable Libya. 

To end the war, foreign powers would need to stop arming their Libyan allies and press them into negotiations instead, but prospects of this happening appear dim. The result could be a more destructive stalemate or a takeover of Tripoli that could give rise to prolonged militia fighting, rather than a stable single government.

6. The U.S., Iran, Israel, and the Persian Gulf

Tensions between the U.S. and Iran rose dangerously in 2019; the year ahead could bring their rivalry to boiling point. The Trump administration’s decision to withdraw from the 2015 nuclear agreement and impose mounting unilateral sanctions against Tehran has inflicted significant costs, but thus far has produced neither the diplomatic capitulation Washington seeks nor the internal collapse for which it may hope. Instead, Iran has responded to what it regards as an all-out siege by incrementally ramping up its nuclear program in violation of the agreement, aggressively flexing its regional muscle, and firmly suppressing any sign of domestic unrest. Tensions have also risen between Israel and Iran. Unless this cycle is broken, the risk of a broader confrontation will rise.

Tehran’s shift from a policy of maximum patience to one of maximum resistance was a consequence of the U.S. playing one of the aces in its coercive deck: ending already-limited exemptions on Iran’s oil sales. Seeing little relief materialise from the nuclear deal’s remaining parties, President Hassan Rouhani in May announced that his government would begin to violate the agreement incrementally. Since then, Iran has broken caps on its uranium enrichment rates and stockpile sizes, started testing advanced centrifuges, and restarted its enrichment plant in its Fordow bunker. With every new breach, Iran may hollow out the agreement’s nonproliferation gains to the extent that the European signatories will decide they must impose their own penalties. At some point, Iran’s advances could prompt Israel or the U.S. to resort to military action.

A diplomatic breakthrough to de-escalate tensions between the Gulf states and Iran or between Washington and Tehran remains possible.

A string of incidents in the Gulf in the past year, culminating in the Sept. 14 attack against Saudi energy facilities, underscored how the U.S.-Iranian standoff reverberates across the broader region. Meanwhile, recurrent Israeli military strikes against Iranian and Iran-linked targets inside Syria and Lebanon – as well as in Iraq and the Red Sea basin, according to Tehran – present a new, dangerous front. Any of these flash points could explode, by design or by accident.

Recognition of the high stakes and costs of war has nudged some of Iran’s Gulf rivals to seek de-escalation even as they continue to back the Trump administration’s “maximum pressure” approach. The UAE has opened lines of communication with Tehran, and Saudi Arabia has engaged in serious dialogue with Yemen’s Huthis.

The potential for conflict has also prompted efforts, led by French President Emmanuel Macron, to help the U.S. and Iran find a diplomatic off-ramp. U.S. President Donald Trump, eager to avoid war, has been willing to hear out his proposal, and the Iranians are also interested in any proposition that provides some sanctions relief.

But with deep distrust, each side has tended to wait for the other to make the first concession. A diplomatic breakthrough to de-escalate tensions between the Gulf states and Iran or between Washington and Tehran remains possible. But, as sanctions take their toll and Iran fights back, time is running out.

7. U.S.-North Korea

The days of 2017, when U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un hurled insults at each other and exchanged threats of nuclear annihilation, seemed distant during most of 2019. But tensions are escalating.

The dangers of 2017 yielded to a calmer 2018 and early 2019. The U.S. halted most joint military drills with South Korea, and Pyongyang paused long-range missile and nuclear tests. U.S.-North Korea relations thawed somewhat, with two Trump-Kim summits. The first – in Singapore in June 2018 – produced a flimsy statement of agreed principles and the possibility of diplomatic negotiations. The second – in Hanoi in February 2019 – collapsed when the gulf between the two leaders on the scope and sequencing of denuclearisation and sanctions relief became clear.

Since then, the diplomatic atmosphere has soured. In April 2019, Kim unilaterally set an end-of-year deadline for the U.S. government to present a deal that might break the impasse. In June, Trump and Kim agreed, over a handshake in the demilitarised zone that separates the two Koreas, to start working-level talks. In October, however, an eight-hour meeting between envoys in Sweden went nowhere.

The two leaders have at times floated the idea of a third summit, but they have backed away at least for the time being. That may be for the best: another ill-prepared meeting could leave both sides feeling dangerously frustrated.

Meanwhile, Pyongyang – which continues to seek leverage to obtain sanctions relief and an end to joint military drills – stepped up short-range ballistic missile tests, which are widely understood not to be covered by the unwritten freeze. North Korea seemed to be motivated by both practical reasons (tests help perfect missile technology) and political ones (those tests appear intended to pressure Washington to propose a more favourable deal). In early December, Pyongyang went further, testing what appeared to be the engine for either a space-launch vehicle or a long-range missile and related technology, at a site that Trump claimed Kim had promised to dismantle.

Trump and Kim should steer clear of high-level pageantry and high-drama provocations, and empower their negotiators to get to work.

Although Pyongyang’s warning of a “Christmas gift” for Washington if the U.S. does not propose a way forward it deems satisfactory had not materialised at the time of writing, prospects for diplomacy seem to be dimming.

Yet both sides should think about what will happen if diplomacy fails. If the North escalates its provocations, the Trump administration could react much like it did in 2017, with name-calling and efforts to further tighten sanctions and by exploring military options with unthinkable consequences.

That dynamic would be bad for the region, the world, and both leaders. The best option for both sides remains a confidence-building, measure-for-measure deal that gives each modest benefits. Pyongyang and Washington need to put in the time to negotiate and gauge possibilities for compromise. In 2020, Trump and Kim should steer clear of high-level pageantry and high-drama provocations, and empower their negotiators to get to work.

8. Kashmir

After falling off the international radar for years, a flare-up between India and Pakistan in 2019 over the disputed region of Kashmir brought the crisis back into sharp focus. Both countries lay claim to the Himalayan territory, split by an informal boundary, known as the Line of Control, since the first Indian-Pakistani war of 1947-48.

First came a February suicide attack by Islamist militants against Indian paramilitaries in Kashmir. India retaliated by bombing an alleged militant camp in Pakistan, prompting a Pakistani strike in Indian-controlled Kashmir. Tensions spiked again in August when India revoked the state of Jammu and Kashmir’s semi-autonomous status, which had served as the foundation for its joining India 72 years ago, and brought it under New Delhi’s direct rule.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government, emboldened by its May re-election, made the change in India’s only Muslim-majority state without any local consultation. Not only that: before announcing its decision, it brought in tens of thousands of extra troops, imposed a communications blackout, and arrested thousands of Kashmiris, including the entire political class, many of whom were not hostile to India.

These moves have exacerbated an already profound sentiment of alienation among Kashmiris that will likely further fuel a long-running separatist insurgency. Separately, the Indian government's new citizenship law, widely regarded as anti-Muslim, has sparked protests and violent police responses in many parts of India. Together with the actions in Kashmir, these developments appear to confirm Modi’s intention to implement a Hindu nationalist agenda.

New Delhi’s claims that the situation is back to normal are misleading. Internet access remains cut off, soldiers deployed in August are still there, and all Kashmiri leaders remain in detention. Modi’s government seems to have no roadmap for what comes next.

Pakistan has tried to rally international support against what it calls India’s illegal decision on Kashmir’s status. But its cause is hardly helped by its long record of backing anti-India jihadis. Moreover, most Western powers see New Delhi as an important partner. They are unlikely to rock the boat over Kashmir, unless violence spirals.

The gravest danger is the risk that a militant attack sets off an escalation.

The gravest danger is the risk that a militant attack sets off an escalation. In Kashmir, insurgents are lying low but still active. Indeed, India’s heavy-handed military operations in Kashmir over the past few years have inspired a new homegrown generation, whose ranks are likely to swell further after the latest repression. A strike on Indian forces almost certainly would precipitate Indian retaliation against Pakistan, regardless of whether Islamabad is complicit in the plan. In a worst-case scenario, the two nuclear-armed neighbours could stumble into war.

External actors should push for rapprochement before it is too late. That won’t be easy. Both sides are playing to domestic constituencies in no mood for compromise. Resuming bilateral dialogue, on hold since 2016, is essential and will necessitate concerted pressure, particularly from Western capitals. Any progress requires Pakistan taking credible action against jihadis operating from its soil, a non-negotiable precondition for India to even consider engaging. For its part, India should lift the communication blackout, release political prisoners, and urgently re-engage with Kashmiri leaders. Both sides should resume cross-border trade and travel for Kashmiris.

If a new crisis emerges, foreign powers will have to throw their full weight behind preserving peace on the disputed border.

9. Venezuela

Venezuela’s year of two governments ended without resolution. President Nicolás Maduro is still in charge, having headed off a civil-military uprising in April and weathered a regional boycott and a stack of U.S. sanctions. But his government remains isolated and bereft of resources, while most Venezuelans suffer from crushing poverty and collapsing public services.

Juan Guaidó, who as National Assembly head laid claim to the interim presidency last January, attracted huge crowds and foreign backing for his demand that Maduro, re-elected in a controversial poll in 2018, leave office. Yet the unpopular government’s survival has offered Guaidó, as well as the U.S. and its Latin American allies such as Brazil and Colombia, harsh lessons. No one can rule out the government’s collapse. Still, hoping for that is, as one opposition deputy told my Crisis Group colleagues, “like being poor and waiting to win the lottery”.

For a start, Maduro’s rivals underestimated his government’s strength – above all, the armed forces’ loyalty. Despite hardship, poor communities remained mostly unconvinced by the opposition. U.S. sanctions heaped stress on the population and decimated an ailing oil industry, but were circumvented by shadowy actors working through the global economy’s loopholes. Gold exports and cash dollars kept the country afloat and enriched a tiny elite. Many of those left out joined the mass exodus of Venezuelans, now numbering 4.5 million, who in turn funneled remittances back home to sustain their families.

The crisis is having other ripple effects. The UN estimates that 7 million Venezuelans need humanitarian aid, many of them in border areas patrolled by armed groups, including Colombian guerrillas. Though sharing more than 1,300 miles of criminalised, violent, and largely unguarded border, the Colombian and Venezuelan governments no longer talk to each other, instead trading insults and blame for sheltering armed proxies. The border has become Venezuela’s primary flashpoint. In the meantime, the split between those Latin American countries backing Guaidó and those supporting Maduro has aggravated an increasingly polarised regional climate.

But there is still a negotiated way out of the turmoil. It would entail compromise from all sides.

With the U.S. seemingly downplaying the possibility of a military intervention – even as Venezuelan opposition hardliners pine for one – the issue is now whether Maduro’s obstinacy and the opposition’s and Washington’s lack of realism will mean a deepening crisis and possible flare-up, or whether more pragmatic voices can find a path to agreement. The omens are not overly promising. Government-opposition talks facilitated by Norway were suspended in September.

But there is still a negotiated way out of the turmoil. It would entail compromise from all sides: the opposition would need to drop its demand that Maduro leave now; the government would have to accept steps ensuring a credible and internationally monitored parliamentary election in 2020 as well as an early – and equally credible –  presidential poll in the near future; and the U.S. government would need to incrementally relieve sanctions as progress is made toward a resolution. This would be an acceptable price for Venezuela’s peace and stability, and to avoid a far worse calamity.

10. Ukraine

Ukraine's comedian-turned-president, Volodymyr Zelenskyy, elected in April 2019, has brought new energy to efforts to end Kyiv’s six-year-old conflict with Russia-backed separatists in the country’s eastern Donbas region. Yet if peace seems slightly more plausible than it did a year ago, it is far from preordained.

Zelenskyy’s predecessor, Petro Poroshenko, negotiated the 2014-2015 Minsk agreements, which aim to end the Donbas conflict; they call for the separatist-held areas’ reintegration into Ukraine in exchange for their autonomy, or “special status”. But the agreements remain unimplemented as Kyiv and Moscow disagree on their specifics and sequencing.

Zelenskyy pledged while campaigning to make peace. He interpreted his and his party’s landslide wins in 2019 elections as mandates to do so. He started by negotiating mutual withdrawals from front-line positions and a ceasefire with Russia and its proxies. In September, he cut a deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin on a prisoner swap. The following month, he endorsed the so-called Steinmeier Formula put forward in 2016 by Frank-Walter Steinmeier, then Germany’s foreign minister and now its president, which proposed that elections in separatist-held areas would trigger first provisional, and then, if the vote was credible, permanent special status and reintegration into Ukraine.

Zelenskyy’s take on the formula required Ukrainian control in those territories before the vote. He nonetheless faced immediate domestic backlash from an unlikely coalition of military veterans’ organisations, far-right groups, and public intellectuals. In contrast, Moscow and separatist leaders welcomed Zelenskyy’s acceptance of the formula, despite his conditions.

In December, Zelenskyy and Putin met in Paris with Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel. The leaders failed to agree on Minsk sequencing but left with plans for a more comprehensive ceasefire, further disengagement at front-line positions, increased Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe monitoring, and new crossing points for civilians at the line of contact separating Ukrainian and separatist forces.

Zelenskyy’s detractors at home appear satisfied he did not sell out in Paris. This gives him more room for maneuver. If things go as planned, the next meeting in France, set for spring, should tackle other components of the Minsk agreement, including amnesties, further troop withdrawals, and a path to reintegrating separatist-held areas into Ukraine.

Much could go wrong. Ceasefire and disengagement plans might collapse and fighting could escalate. Even if they hold, Zelenskyy needs Moscow to compromise for peace to stand a chance. So far, however, although Moscow has been more amenable to deals with Zelenskyy than with his predecessor, its core positions remain unchanged: it denies being party to the conflict it initiated, fought in, and funded. It insists Kyiv should negotiate Donbas’ self-rule with separatist leaders.

Peace would offer clear dividends for Ukraine and carry benefits for Russia: it could bring sanctions relief and remove the burden of financial and military support to separatist-held areas. From his Western allies, Zelenskyy needs all the help he can get as he continues his charm offensive in eastern Ukraine and outreach to Moscow.

Originally published in Foreign Policy: 10 Conflicts to Watch in 2020


ዝኸበርክንን ዝኸበርኩምን  ደቂ ሃገር

ብስም ሰልፊ ዲሞክራሲ ህዝቢ ኤርትራ:  መሪሕነቱን መላእ መሰረታቱን እንቋዕ ናብ ሓድሽ ዓመት 2020 ኣሰጋገረና እናበልኩ ሰላምታን   ሰናይ  ምንዮትን አመሓላልፈልኩም።

ዝሓልፈ ዓመት 2019፡ ምስ ኩሉ’ቲ ኣብ ልዕሊ ኤርትራን ኤርትራውያንን ዝወረደ ምልካዊ ግፍዒ፡ ምስቲ ንኤርትራዊ ልዑላውነትን ሃገራዊ ክብርን ዝህድድ ናይ ጥልመት ወስታታት፡ ምስ ስደትን ከርተተትን ህዝብና፡ ምስቲ  ሰእነተ ቅሳነትን፡ ናይ መግብን ትምህርትን ጥሜትን፡ ከምኡውን ምስ ዘካየድናዮ ናይ መኸተ ስራሕ ሰጊርናዮ ኣሎና።   ኣብዚ ሓድሽ ዓመት’ዚ እቲ ዝሓለፈ ዓመት 2019 ከመይ ነበረ ከነንጸባርቕ፡ ንዝመጽእ ዓመት 2020  ከኣ ብተስፋ ከነማዕዱን ክንሰርሓሉን ግቡእና እዩ።

ነዚ ዝሓለፈ ዓመት ምልስ ኢልና ክንጥምት እንከሎና፡ በቲ ሓደ ሸነኽ ንኩልና እቶም ነዚ ሓድሽ ዓመት ክንርኢ ዝበቓዕና፡ ጸጋ እዩ። እንቋዕ ኣብቅዓና።  በቲ ካልእ ሽነኽ ግን፡ ኣብ ጉዕዞና ተመሊስና ክንረኽቦ ዘይንኽእል ክሳራታት ገጢሙና እዩ። እንፈትዎም ደቅና፡ መቓልስትናን ብጾትናን፡ መሓዙትናን ፈተውትናን፡ ወለድና፡ ኣሓትናን ኣሕዋትናን፡ ኣዝማድና  ዘኸፈልና ኣሎና። ብሕማም እናተሳቐዩ፡ ኣብ ማእሰርቲ ተዳጊኖም እንከለዉ፡ ብግፍዒ ኣካሎም ሰንኪሉ እንከሎ፡ ን2019 ዝሰገርዋ እውን ኣለዉና። ምስ ምሉእ ኣካሎም እንከለዉ፡ ቤተሰቦም ብዘይካ ብስእሊ ብኣካል ንክረኽቡ ዘይከኣሉ፡ ሰብኣዊ ሓርነት ዝተነፍጎም ኣብ ፍልልይ እንከለዉ ንሓዋሩ ዝተፈላለዩ እውን ኣለዉና።  መርዓን ደርዓን ውላድን ጥምቀትን ዝረኣዩ፡ ዝተሓጐሱ እውን ኣለዉና።   ኣብዚ ሃለዋትዚ  ነቶም ብህይወት 2019  ከሰግሩ ዘይከኣሉ ወገናትና፡ መንግስተ ሰማያት የዋርሶም። ነቶም እንተ ብጽቡቕ እንተ ብሕማቕ፡ እንተ ብቐረባ እንተ ብርሑቕ፡ ዝሓለፉ ወገናትና ኣፋኒና፡ ብህይወት ነዚ ክንርኢ ዝበቓዕና ድማ ጽንዓት፡ ዘይቀብጽ ተስፋ፡ ከምኡ’ውን ዛዛሚ ዓወት ይሃበና።

ክቡራትን ክቡራንን ደቂ ሃገር፡

እዚ ዓመት’ዚ እውን፡  ከም’ቶም ዝሓለፉ ዓመታት ብድሆታትን  ዕድላትን ሒዙልና ክመጽእ እዩ። ነቲ ብድሆታት ክንሰግሮ ነቲ ዕድላት ድማ ግዜ ከየጥፋእና ክንጥቀመሉ ሃገራዊ ጸዋዒት ኣሎና። ነዚ ዓመት’ዚ ዝኸውን ናይ ቃልሲ ስንቅና ክንጽዕን፡ መዓንጣና ሽጥ ኣቢልና ክንቅጽል የድልየና። ሓይልና ምልላይ የድልየና። ሓይልና ድማ ኣብ ህዝብና እዩ ዘሎ። ህዝቢ እንተነዲሩ፡ ብሓባር   ኣይምእዘዝን  ኣይግዛእን እንተኢሉ፡ መላሲ የብሉን።

ንሃገርን ዕቤታን፡ ኮታ ንልዑላውነት ኤርትራ ዝህድድ ሓደ ጸላኢ ጥራሕ’ዩ ዘሎ።  እቲ ምልካዊ ስርዓት። ጸረ ህዝቢ ንሱ ጥራይ እዩ። ኤርትራ ካልእ ጸላኢ የብላን። ኣብ ቅድሚ ምልኪ፡ ኩሎም ካልኦት ሓይልታት መሓዙት እዮም። ሃይማኖታት፡ ብሄራት ኣውራጃታት ከምኡን ጾታን ዕድመን ደቂ ሰባት፡ መላፍንቲ እምበር ተጻረርቲ ኣይኰኑን።  ምልካዊ ጸላኢ ጥራሕ’ዩ ከም ተጻረርትን ዘይራኸቡን ገይሩ ክርእዮም ዝፍትን።  ከምቲ ሓሰኻ ኣብ ዝመሽመሸ ኣካል ዝሃጥር፡ ምልኪ ድማ  ኣብ ሕማምን ምፍልላይን ኢዩ ዝነብር። እቲ ቀንዲ ጸገም ኤርትራ ምልካዊ ስርዓት እዩ። እቲ መጀመርታ ፍታሕ ንጸገማት ኤርትራ ድማ ምልኪ ምልጋስ እዩ። እዚ ቀዳማይ ዕማም እንተተሳሊጡ ድሕሪኡ ዝመጻ ጸገማት ብእዋኑ ክፍታሕ ይከኣል’ዩ።

ሓንሳብን ንሓዋሩን ጸላኢ ህዝቢ ኤርትራ ምስ ኣለለና፡ እንታይነት ምልክን ግፍዕታቱን ምስ ኣነጸርና፡  ናይ ትማሊ ጸላኣቲ ናይ ሎሚ ኣዕሩኽ ክንከውን ኢና። እቶም ብረት ዓጢቖም  ንምልኪ ዘገልገሉ፡ ምስ ህዝቦም ኣንጻር ምልኪ ጠጠው ክብሉን ኣብ ጐድኒ ህዝቦም ክዓርዱን እዮም።  እቶም ብጉልበትን ብገንዘብን ንምልኪ ከሐይሉ ዝጸንሑ፡ ዓቕምታቶም ስሒቦም ኣብ ጥቕሚ ህዝቢ ከውዕልዎ እዮም። እቶም ብንኡስ ግርጭታት  ተፈላልዮም ዝጸንሑ ሓይልታት ፍትሒ ድማ  ዓቕምታቶም ጠርኒፎም ዕርቅን ስኒትን ኣውሪዶም፡ ምስ ህዝቦም  ወጊኖም ነዚ ስርዓት ሓንሳብን ንሓዋሩን ክዓልውዎ እዮም።  ሽዑ ኤርትራ ብሰላም ናብ መስርሕ ምስግጋር ናብ ዲሞክራሲ ክትኣቱ እያ።

ኣሓትን ኣሕዋትን

እወ ኣብ 2019 ዝገጠመ ፈተነታት፡ ዘሕለፍናዮ ሽግራትን መስዋእትን ጠቒስና፡ ግንከ 2019  ረጊጽካዮ ክሕለፍ ዘይከኣል፡ ንሓይልታት ደምበ ተቓውሞን ደለይቲ ፍትሒን  ዘበረኸ  ኣወንታዊ ተረኽቦታት ነይርዋ እዩ። ኣብ ገሊኡ መዳይስ ወረ ምልካዊ ስርዓት ኤርትራ ኣዝዩ ዝሰግኣላ ዓመት ነይራ ክበሃል ይከኣል። ኣወ ስርዓት ኤርትራ ንረብሓኡ ክልውጦ ዝፈተነ ናይ ኢትዮጵያ ምዕባሌታት ነይሩ። ብዞባውን ኣህጉራውን ደረጃታት ትንፋስ ክረኽበሉ ዝሃቀነ ወፈራታትት ነይሩ። ግን ብቅልጡፍ ባዕሉ ንነብሱ ዘቃልዓሉ ኩነታት ድማ ተጋሂዱ። ንቀዳማይ ሚኒስተር ዶር ኣቢዩ ኣሕመድ ንኤርትራ ንኽውክል ከፍቅድ፡ ኣፍ ልቡ ኣናሃረመ ሕንቕንቕ ክብል፡  ኣይከሰርናን እናበለ ክምድር ምስ ተራእየ፡ ኤርትራዊ ዓለም ብዓለሙ ተገልቢጥዎ እዩ። ልዑላውነት ክትንከፍ ዝረኣዩ ኤርትራውያን ሰብ ሕልና፡ ብኡ ንብኡ ምስቲ ስርዓት ዝነበሮም ዝምድና በቲኾም፡ ወዶም ጓሎም ሰብኣዮም ሰብይቶም፡ ኣብ ግዳም ወጺኦም መኪቶም’ዮም። ‘ይኣክል’ ኢሎም።  እቲ ገዛኢ ፖሊቲካዊ ቋንቋ ከኣ ‘ይኣክል’ ኮይኑ።  2019 እምበኣር እቲ ብደረጃ  መላእ ዓለም  ካብ ኣውስትራልያ ክሳብ ካናዳ ዝተፈልጠ ህዝባዊ ምንቅስቓስ ይኣክል” ዓሚሙ ነቲ ስርዓት ኣብ ሻቕሎት ዘእተዎ ዓመት እዩ።  ብዘይካዚ  ናይ ቲቪ ኣገልግሎት  ከምኒ ኣሰናን ኤሪሳትን ከምኡውን ኩሉ መዳያዊ ማሕበራዊ መድያ፡ ንጸጥታዊ ሓጹር ህግደፍ  በሲዑ፡ ንናይ ስለላ ትካላቱ በታቲኹ ኣብ ውሽጢ ኤርትራን  ኤርትራውያን ገዛውትን  ኣትዩ፡  ድምጺ ግፉዓት ኣስሚዑ ወረ ተቓለስቲ ድማ ዘርጊሑ እዩ። መርበብ ስለላ ህግደፍ በቶም ኣብ ውሽጢ ኤርትራ ኰይኖም ድምጺ ግፉዓት ዘቃልሑን ዝመከቱን እውን  ተበዲሁ እዩ።  2019 ዓ.ም ኣብ ላዕሊ ብዝዘርዘርናዮም ክሳራታት በዲልናያ እንተዀና፡ እንሆ እዚ ምልክት ዓወታት ዘርኣየት ዓመት ብምዃና ብምስጋና ክንክሕሳ ግቡእና እዩ።

ብተወሳኺ፡ ዓመት 2019 ናይ ሓድነትን ሓባራዊ ዕዮን ተስፋታት ዝተጋህደላ ዓመት እያ። ኣብ 2019 ሓያሎ መደባት ሓባራዊ ዕዮ ተሰላሲሉ። ብህዝባዊ መዳይ፡ ምንቅስቓስ ይኣክል ኣብ ሓያሎ ቦታታት ይንህር ኣሎ።  ምስ’ቲ ኩሉ ዝገጥሞ ብድሆታትን ናይ ስርዓት ህግደፍ ወስታታትን፡ ጸላኢኡ ሓደ ጥራይ ምዃኑ፡ ስርሑ ድማ ናብ ውሽጢ ኤርትራ ልሒሙ ህዝባዊ ናዕቢ ኣባሪዑ፡ ነዚ ሓደ ምልካዊ ስርዓት ምዕላው  ምዃኑ ኣለለዩ ካብ ዕለት ናብ ዕለት እናዓከዀ ይኸይድ ኣሎ። ኣብ 2020 ዝሰፍሐ ምንቅስቓስን ዝሰፍሐ ህዝባዊ ተሳትፎን ንምነየሉ።  

ብዘይካኡ ንውድባት ከራኽብን ሓባራዊ ዕምማት ክህንድስን ዝጽዕር ዘሎ ምንቅስቓሳት፡ ከምኒ ዋዕላ ሚኒሶታን ንቕሎ ኣዴታትን ኣብዚ ዓመትዚ ተጋሂዱ ዘበርከቶ ግደ ዕዙዝ ነይሩ። ከምኡውን ናይ መጽናዕቲ ጉጅለታት ኣብ ዝተፈላላየ መዳያት ብዝተፈላልዩ ኣካላት ቀሪቦም ሓያሎ ሰሚናራት፡ ሲሞፖዝዩማት ኮንፈረንሳት ተካይዶም። ፍረ 2019 ንረብሓ ውጹዓት ኤርትርውያን ነይሩ።

ብደረጃ  ፖሊቲካዊ ውድባት  ከኣ ናይ ሓድሕድ ምፍጣጥ፡ ምጽልላማትን ምርሕሓቕን  ጠጠው ኢሉ፡  ካእባዊ ይኹን ብዙሕነታዊ ዘተታትን ሓባራዊ ዕዮታትን መስርዑ ሒዙ ክቕጽል ተራእዩ። ካብ’ቲ ምርኡይ ሓባራዊ መግለጽታት ናይ ውድባት

ብዛዕባ ዶር ኣብይ ኣሕመድ ብፕረዚደንት ኢሳያስ  ተወኪለ ብምባል ብወግዒ ብስም ኤርትራ ክዛረብ ምጅማሩ፤

ብዛዕባ ዕሱባት ህግደፍ ኣብ ልዒሊ  ናይ ኣሰና ቲቪ መራሒ ሓው ኣማኑኤል እያሱ  ዘውርድዎ ናይ መጥቃዕቲ ፈተነ፤

ብዛዕባ ኤርትራውያን ስደተኛታት ኣብ ሱዳን ኣብ ዚ መወዳእታ እዋን ዝገጠሞም ግፍዕን ምክልባትን፤

ብዛዕባ ኣብ እስራኤል ዝተጋህደ ናይ ኤርትራውያን ቅትለትን መውጋእትን ነይሩ።

ፖሊቲካዊ ውድባት ከነ ባይቶ ይኣክል ሰሜን ኣመሪካ፡ ነዚ ጉዳያት ኣመልኪቱ ሓባራዊ መግለጽታት ምውጽኡ፡ ደጊም  ፍልልያትና ኣወንዚፍና፡ ከም መላፍንቲ ንነፍስና ፈሊጥና ክንምርሽን ኢና ዘብል እዩ።  እዚ ዓወታት’ዚ ናይ 2019 ዓወታት እዩ።  ንዓኡ ዓቕምና ኣማዕቢልና ናብ 2020 ከነሰጋግሮ ድማ ትምኒትና ኣዩ።

ክቡራትን ክቡራትን

ኣብዚ መድርኽ’ዚ ነቲ  ብቐጥታ ንጉዳይና ዝጸለወ ኣህጉራውን ዞባውን ምዕባሌታት ከይተንከፍና ክንሓልፍ ስለ ዘይንኽእል፡ ሕጂ’ውን  ኣህጉራዊ ማሕበረሰብ ንጉዳይና ብዕቱብነት ክከታተል ናይ ዞባና ሃገራት ንልዑላውነት  ሃገርናን ሰላም ዞባናን ካብ ዝህድድ ወስታታት ክቑጠባ  ምሕጽንታና ህያው እዩ።

ንሃገራት ዞባና ብዝምልከት ድማ  ሰላመን ሰላምና ብምዃኑ ኩለን ዞባታት ሃገርና ሰላምን ዲሞክራስን ንምነየለን፡ ኣውራ ከኣ እተን ብቐጥታ ስደተኛታትና ዘዕቁባ ዘለዋ ሃገራት፡ ብዝምልከት ህዝቢ ኢትዮጵያ  ካብ’ቲ ኣሻቓሊ  ህልዊ ሽግራቱ ወጺኡ ናብ ሰላማዊ መስርሕ ክኣቱ፤ ህዝቢ ሱዳን ድማ ነቲ  ኣብ ልዕሊ ምልኪ ዘረጋገጾ ዓወት ዓቂቡ፡ ንዝኣተዎ መስርሕ ምስግጋር ናብ ዲሞክራሲ ከዐውት ሰናይ ምንዮትና ንገልጽ።

ብውሽጣዊ ውደባዊ  ኩነታትና ንዓና ሰልፊ ዲሞክራሲ ህዝቢ ኤርትራ፡ ( ሰዲህኤ)  ዓመት 2019  ዕዉት መስርሕ ሓድነት ክልተ ኤርትራውያን ውድባት፣ ሃገራዊ ድሕነት ኤርትራ-ሕድሪን  ሰልፊ ዲሞክራሲ ህዝቢ ኤርትራን፣ ዘረጋገጸትልና ዓመት ምዃና ከይመስከርና ክንሓልፍ ኣይንኽእልን።  ክልተ ድሕረ ባይታታት ዝጸንሖም ውድባት፡ ኣብ መንጎኦም ብዘርኣይዎ፡ ምትእምማን፡ ምትሕልላይ፡  ንሓደ ሓባራዊ ዕላማ ምግልጋል፡ ንድሕሪት ዘይምለስ ዘተን ልዝብን ከካይዱ ኣብቂዕዎም እዩ’ሞ፡ ምስ ኩለን ኣተን ንሓድነት ኰነ ንሓባራዊ ስራሕ እንብህገን  ሓይልታት ከምኡ ይፍጠረልና።  ኣባላት ሰዲህኤ ድማ  ደኺምና ከይበልኩም፡ ስንቅን ዑቕባን ጽላልን ኰይንኩም፡  እዚ ሰልፊ’ዚ፡ ከይወድቕ ዝተኸላኸልኩም፡  ድሕሪት ከይተርፍ ዝደፋእኩም፡  ናይ ህላዌኡን ቀጻልነቱን ጉልበትን ንዋትን ብምዃን  ዝተወፈኹም፡ ከምኡ’ውን እቶም ኣባላት ዘይክነስኹም ሓልዮት ዘርኣኹምናን ብጉልበትን ንዋትን ዝሓገዝኩምናን  ደረት ዘይብሉ ምስጋናና ይብጻሕኩም።

ክቡራትን ክቡራንን

2019 ኣብ ኣንዛዝመሉ  2020 ድማ ኣብ እንቅበለሉ ግዜ፡ ኣእምሮና ናብ ሓደ ኣንፈት/ ገጽ ከተኩር  ጀሚሩ ኣሎ።  2020 ናይ ተግባር ዓመት ትኹነልና፡  ብተግባር ኩሉ ዓቕምና ኣስሚርና ብመንፈስ ናይ ልዑል ምትሕብባር፡ ናብ ሓደ ኣንፈት፡ ጸረ-ምልካዊ ኣንፈት ምድፋእ የድልየና። በበቲ ንኽእሎን በበቲ ዘሎናን ዓቕምታት  ጉዳይና ንምዕዋት  ንውፈር።  ውራይና ከነዕውት፡ ክሰልጠና፡  መንፈስ ናይ  ወለድና ሕብረት የድለየና’ሎ።  መንፈስ ምትሕብባር፡ ምድግጋፍ፡ መንፈስ “ወፈራ ንማኣቶት”  ኣቦታት፡ ኣዴታት፡  መንእሰያት ኮታ ኩሉ ህዝብና ንወፈራ  2020  ንበገስ። ወፈራ ንምውዳቕ ግፍዒ ንምትካል ፍትሒ።

ብእንረኽቦ ዕድላት ንጠቐም ቅኑዕ ውሳኔታት ንውሰድ። ዕድላት ኩሉ ግዜ ኣይንረኽቦን ኢና። ውሳኔታትና ግን ኩሉ ግዜ ምሳና ኣሎ።  ቅኑዕ ውሳኔና ድማ ንእንረኽቦ ዕድላት ከጸብቐልና ይኽእል እዩ’ሞ ውሳኔና ባዕልና ንጨብጦ።  

ደሓን ኩኒ 2019  ብደሓን ምጺ 2020!!

ንመኸተ ዓመት  ሓይሊ፣ ሽግራት ንምስጋር ዓመት ጽንዓት፡ ቅኑዕ ንምስራሕ ዓመት ትብዓት ይግበረልና!

ርሑስ ሓድሽ ዓመት 2020!

ክንዲ ሰልፊ ዲሞክራሲ ህዝቢ ኤርትራ

ተስፋይ ወ/ሚካኤል ( ደጊጋ )

ኣቦ መንበር ሰዲህኤ


Eritrean under-20 soccer players Hermon Fessehaye Yohannes, Simon Asmelash Mekonen, Hanibal Girmay Tekle, and Mewael Tesfai Yosief talk together in a house where they are staying in Uganda.
Eritrean under-20 soccer players Hermon Fessehaye Yohannes, Simon Asmelash Mekonen, Hanibal Girmay Tekle, and Mewael Tesfai Yosief talk together in a house where they are staying in Uganda.

After another defection of Eritrean football players during a tournament in Uganda, an official said that it has become expected that athletes from the Horn of Africa country will flee when traveling abroad.

"It's been kind of routine over the past several years whenever there is an event, sports event, where the Eritreans take part, it's almost a must that some of them won't return home," said Ismail Dhakaba, spokesperson for Uganda's National Council for Sports.

Seven Eritrean footballers defected during a regional tournament known as the Cecafa Senior Challenge Cup. This followed the October defection of four players from Eritrea's under-20 team who were competing in Uganda.

Dhakaba said he has been told by an Eritrean footballer that team members are required to sign a letter promising to return home while playing in foreign tournaments. He also said the team travels with a group of bodyguards meant to prevent defections. However, athletes find ways to escape. Dhakaba said Uganda's relatively welcoming stance toward refugees and economic opportunities make it an attractive destination.

"It's a very easy country to live in. You'll always find a place to start and you don't need to have a lot of money to live in Uganda normally. You can go with a bare minimum, so they find life here much better than their country. And that's why most of them decide to stay," he said.

Eritrean Minister of Information Yemane Gebremeskel has tweeted about the success of the team during the tournament. However, he has not commented on the players who defected. Government officials did not respond to a VOA request for comment on the matter. Additionally, Alemseged Efrem, the Eritrean football coach, was invited to appear on a sports show on state-owned media for a discussion about the tournament, but there was no mention of the players who did not return.

'Basic human rights'

Kimberley Motley, an American attorney representing the four football players who defected in October, said she has been told by her clients that life inside Eritrea is heavily restricted. Most people enter military service between the ages of 16 to 17, and can be forced to serve indefinitely. Arbitrary arrests are commonplace and footballers are hesitant to congregate while not on the pitch for fear of arousing suspicion. She said her clients fear for the safety of their families at home.

Eritrean under-20 soccer players Simon Asmelash Mekonen, Mewael Tesfai Yosief, Hermon Fessehaye Yohannes, and Hanibal Girmay Tekle talk together in a house where they are staying in Uganda.
After Weeks on the Run, Eritrean Footballers in Uganda Plead for Resettlement
Four Eritrean football players are asking for asylum in Uganda after playing a tournament in October, saying they fear 'unimaginable punishments and it might even cause us death,' if sent back to Eritrea

"They very much, unfortunately, are under the thumb of the government like everyone in Eritrea. And they're very, very concerned about their families," she told VOA.

Motley said her clients are fearful that they will be returned to Eritrea by Ugandan authorities or attacked by Eritrean agents in Uganda.

"These are good young men, most of them teenagers, who are simply fighting for their own freedom. And the freedom to live. The freedom to play sports. The freedom to just be who they want to be," she told VOA, speaking about the conditions of the football players. "They just want their basic human rights [to] be honored, which everyone on this planet should be entitled to."



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