This week on The Horn, Alan Boswell is joined by author and scholar, Harry Verhoeven, to discuss Eritrea’s re-emerging role in the Horn of Africa region after more than a decade of isolation.
Eritrea’s efforts to bolster its international standing continued as President Isaias spoke out on Sudan conflict and strengthened ties with China, Russia.
President Isaias sought influence in addressing Sudan crisis. In 1 May interview with state media, President Isaias discussed conflict in Sudan, urging “an immediate end” to fighting and emphasising potential mediating role of neighbouring countries, including Eritrea; also advocated for Intergovernmental Authority on Development regional bloc to play support role. During meeting with Sudanese ambassador 12 May, Isaias denied allegations Asmara is cooperating with United Arab Emirates to provide sanctuary for fighters from Sudan’s paramilitary Rapid Support Forces.
Eritrea bolstered relations with China and Russia. President Isaias 14 May arrived in China for four-day state visit at invitation of Chinese President Xi Jinping as countries sought to “enrich their strategic partnership”. Leaders held talks on bilateral cooperation, regional stability and global issues, with Xi saying China “is ready to work with Eritrea to advance mutually beneficial cooperation”. Isaias 30 May arrived in Russian capital Moscow for four-day official visit at invitation of Russian President Putin, who 31 May announced sides would soon sign various cooperation agreements.
This week on The Horn, Alan speaks with Michael Woldemariam, professor at the University of Maryland, about the tumultuous relations between Eritrea and Tigray and how the historical grievances between both sides have shaped the recent conflict in northern Ethiopia.
This week on Hold Your Fire!, Richard Atwood and guest host Comfort Ero talk with Crisis Group’s Horn of Africa director, Murithi Mutiga, about the fighting in Ethiopia’s Tigray region and mounting tension between Ethiopia and its neighbours Eritrea and Sudan.
Eritrea continues to be an enigma few outsiders know well. This week on The Horn, Alan Boswell is joined by author and journalist Martin Plaut, who offers unique insights on the Horn of Africa’s most off-the-radar country and President Isaias’ autocratic state.
A 12 June clash between Eritrea and Ethiopia comes as the Horn of Africa’s two most implacable rivals face a crossroads.
Eritrea’s youth exodus has significantly reduced the young nation’s human capital. While this has had advantages for the government – allowing the departure of those most dissatisfied and most likely to press for political change – the growing social and political impact of mass migration at home and abroad demands concerted domestic and international action.
Change is in the air in Eritrea, a highly authoritarian state, but any political transition will require internal political inclusion and channels for external dialogue if it is to preserve stability and improve Eritrean life.
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