UN rights chief hopes Eritrea will end indefinite conscription soon – 13 September

  • Africanews reports on the new UN human rights chief Michelle Bachelet’s work toward the abolition of compulsory conscription into the military in Eritrea.
  • Bachelet told the 39th session of the Human Rights Council on September 10: “We particularly look forward to seeing an end to indefinite conscription into the Eritrean military.”
  • Bachelet said the peace deal of July 9, 2018 was vital to ending the standoff adding that her office “stands ready to support both countries in protecting human rights.”

Africanews: Eritrea will rejoin, it’s just a matter of time: IGAD Secretary General – 13 September

  • Africanews reports on the conspicuous absence of Eritrean representatives at the latest Summit of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Assembly of Heads of State and Government meeting, held in Addis Ababa on Wednesday 12 September.
  • Eritrea initially suspended its IGAD membership in 2007, but rejoined in 2011. However, in August that year, Eritrea’s representative to the IGAD Council of Ministers meeting in Addis Ababa was informed that he could not attend and was escorted out.
  • Eritrea’s attendance was clearly expected at the most recent summit, having been included on the agenda. Eritrea has given no explanation for its absence.
  • Arguing that the joint declaration signed between Somalia, Eritrea and Ethiopia last week had all but paved the way for Eritrea’s re-entry, Ambassador Maalim, Executive Secretary of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) said: ‘‘Essentially the deal is done, we just await a pronouncement.’’

Africanews: Eritrea – Egypt boost ties as foreign minister visits Asmara – 14 September

  • Africanews covers talks held by Eritrea and Egypt around the enhancement of bilateral ties, amid a cooling of relations between nations across the Horn of Africa region.
  • Eritrean information minister, Yemane Meskel, disclosed that Sameh Shoukry, Egypt’s Foreign Affairs Minister, underlined the convergence of views of both leaders on vital regional issues.
  • In a tweet , Shoukry said that “enhanced cooperation between Egypt & Eritrea will thus “imbue additional vigour to recent positive developments in the Horn of Africa”.

Bloomberg: Eritrea Seeks Regional Role as It Casts Off Hermit-State Tag – 14 September

  • Bloomberg’s Nizar Manek comments on Eritrea’s reputation as a hermit state now pushing to become a key player in one of the world’s most strategically important regions.
  • “Eritrea is not an island but can thrive in an environment of regional cooperation,” Yemane Gebreab, the top political adviser to President Isaias Afwerki, said in an interview in the capital, Asmara.
  • The “basic requirement” for forging the peace accord with Ethiopia was to find a partner in its giant neighbour for regional cooperation and integration, Yemane said. It only became possible after Abiy Ahmed took over as prime minister in Addis Ababa in April and immediately initiated a broad array of political and economic reforms.
  • “If there was a different situation in Ethiopia and a different setup, all the efforts and encouragements would not have produced results,” said Yemane, who heads the political department of the ruling Eritrean People’s Front for Democracy and Justice. “For us, the crucial point was determining whether real change had come to Ethiopia.”

Eritrea Focus: Conference on Eritrea & Ethiopia Peace Initiative on 15th September

  • Eritrea Focus will be holding a conference to celebrate the rapprochement between the two countries but will question the lack of transparency around what it means to both peoples.
  • The event will be held on 15th September at the Resource for London from 17.30 to 20.00 BST.
  • Those wishing to attend are encouraged to register on Eventbrite:


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