Amnesty International: Eritrea: Visiting US envoy must demand action on deplorable record of arbitrary detentions – 30 November

  • Amnesty International has called upon Tibor Nagy, US Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, to “demand the release of all prisoners arbitrarily detained solely for peacefully exercising their freedom of expression and freedom of belief, including Ciham Ali who also holds US citizenship, when he visits Eritrea in the coming days.”
  • Amnesty cites in particularly the case of Ali, who was arrested in 2012, then aged 15, for attempting to leave the country in violation of Eritrea’s national service policy. She has been held incommunicado and her family has not seen or heard from her since.
  • The demand reads: “Assistant Secretary Nagy must make robust representations to push for the immediate and unconditional release of both Ciham and all those detained across the country solely for peacefully exercising their human rights.”

Eritrea Hub: Riding to Somalia’s rescue: clues to Eritrean and Ethiopian plans – 30 November

  • Eritrea Hub publishes an analysis of the potential consequences of Ethiopian and Eritrean involvement in the Somali conflict, hinted at by recent diplomatic engagements between the three countries.
  • In an agreement signed by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo, and President Isaias Afwerki on 9 November in Bahr Dar, Ethiopia, the three leaders “stressed the importance of respecting the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of Somalia as well as their firm support for the Somalia people and Federal Government of Somalia and all its institution”.
  • The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) forces currently deployed to Somalia are due to begin withdrawing from the country next February.
  • Eritrea has played a “double role” in Somalia, and in 2011 was revealed by the UN to have provided training and arms to al-Shabaab militants.
  • Recent developments coincide with the appointment of Donald Yamamoto, who played a key role in the reconciliation between Ethiopia and Eritrea, as new US ambassador to Somalia.

African Union: Communique of the 810th meeting of the PSC on the situation in the Horn of Africa, 22 November 2018 – 30 November 2018

  • The Peace and Security Council of the African Union has once again praised the “sustained positive developments in the Horn of Africa marked by the improved diplomatic relations between and among the countries of the region, particularly between Eritrea and Ethiopia”.
  • The Council welcomed Eritrea’s recent engagement with Djibouti and called upon the two countries to continue “engaging towards finding solutions to the issue of missing soldiers and the border between the two countries, in line with the Resolution 2444 (2018)”.
  • The Council also welcomed the signing of the Joint Declaration on Comprehensive Cooperation between Ethiopia, Somalia and Eritrea signed in Asmara, on 5 September 2018.

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