Role of Information & Communication Technology and H.R.D Efforts in Eritrea PDF Print E-mail
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Role of Information & Communication Technology and H.R.D Efforts in Eritrea

A Movement to Strengthen Self Reliance

Dr. Suresh Kumar & Ms. Jayshree, Banasthali Vidyapith, Rajasthan, India

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No. 81, 16 th December 2006

Part-1

Introduction
The world is changing at a rapid pace, and the scope and impact of change have several magnitude and inferences that rise above geographic and cultural borders. The United Nations Development Programme under Human Development Report states that "to address the growing challenges of human security, a new development paradigm is needed that puts people at the centre of development, regards economic growth as a means and not an end, protects the life opportunities of future generations as well as present generations, and respects the natural systems of which all life depends." [UNDP, Human Development Report 1994, Oxford University Press, New York , NY . USA , p.4]. The ICT covers computers, e-mail, networking, internet, mobile phone, fax machine, radio, television, telephone, wireless loop line as its essential components. Commencing a social development awareness, globalization is a complex phenomenon expressing the union of economic, political, social, and cultural factors interacting in Africa and Eritrea in particular through Information & Communication Technology (ICT) cross-geographic borders. President Isais Awerki articulated the vision and plan for ICT in Eritrea , “In telecommunications, the extension of mobile telephone services is growing demand. Expansion of fixed and mobile telephone services coupled with narrow and broadband internet access through satellite linkup, which is principally aimed at enhancing information services for education and students, are additional communications projects the government is pursuing vigorously” (Eritrea Profile, vol. 12, No.22, May 25, 2005).

ICT brings a global equalization of expectations, resulting from improvements in education, global communication, and transportation that persuade Human Resource Development (HRD) efforts in Eritrea . Despite all the hostilities in the political border, Eritrea can indeed work together with different African countries. Eritrea is fighting against poverty, illiteracy, war and human & natural disasters. Access to education and technology, which is considered to be the remedies to this situation, is one of the efforts of HRD through Eritrea Institute of Technology (EIT), Mai Nefhi, College of Agriculture in Hamelmalo, Keren, College of Health Sciences and Orota School of Medicine in Asmara, College of Marine Sciences and Technology in Hirgigo, Massawa, College of Arts & Social Sciences, Adi Kieh, College of Business and Economics, Massawa and other education institutions. ICT is a subversive medium to fight against these evils. ICT through Internet brings the opportunity where the human mind is a direct productive force needs to strengthen in Eritrea . The potential of ICT and its practices may bring a social change and provide access to mass population. HRD in Eritrea feels the need of creating a platform in favor of such ICT initiatives in EIT and other educational institutes, medical and nursing institutions, Finance and Business College , Agriculture College and Engineering College , which could make ICT relevant for the common people living in Eritrea . Mr. Haddish Tesfamariam , Director, Planning & Budgeting Division, Ministry of Education (MoE) during his personal interview (on 29.09.2006) rightly pointed out, “the MoE is focusing on human capital development keeping the future knowledge-based world economies in mind. The MoE introduces computer and Internet Technology (IT) into all secondary schools in the country to promote computer operations as well as higher order of critical and creative thinking, problem solving and teamwork-oriented skills enabled by IT. The idea of Pan-Africa is emphasized in Eritrea and he points out, “MoE is currently introduces IT literacy courses in Eritrean Middle and High schools as a subject to students. There is a provision of in-service training, pre-service training and exposure to computers to high School teachers. ICT as a subject in all Eritrean Secondary school together with supporting technical, pedagogical and management training necessary will support the process and strengthen the process of Pan-Africa network in Eritrea ”.

Pan-Africa Network and Information Technology

United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan underlines, that ICT can play in furthering and enhancing sustainable development. Everywhere in the developing world, especially in Africa , governments are launching ambitious ICT infrastructure initiatives, radically changing their communications policy frameworks and situating ICT at the heart of their self reliance movement as a strategy. ICT has become an indispensable tool in the fight against poverty in Africa . ICT provides developing nations with an unprecedented opportunity to meet vital development goals such as poverty reduction, basic healthcare, and education, far more effectively than before. Those nations that succeed in harnessing the potential of ICT can look forward to greatly expand economic growth, dramatically improved human welfare and stronger forms of democratic governance. ICT in changing world and Africa should identify specific policy prescriptions undertaken by countries illustrating the application of ICT tools and strategies for income generation and human poverty eradication, enhancing economic opportunities and reducing the gap in social equity. It focuses on human development, which meets UNDP mandate in the area for development by concretely promoting human development and eradicating poverty. Human development resumes its centrality and freedom becomes the principal means and ends of development. Amartya Sen observed that it would become essential to ‘develop and support a plurity of institutions, including democratic systems, legal mechanisms, market structure, educational and health provisions, media insight and framework to reinstate freedom at the core of human development initiatives'[Sen, A, Development As Freedom, Knopf, New York, 1999].

The Pan-African Network (PAN) aims to bridge the digital divide in Africa Continent and propose tele-education and telemedicine services to the member countries of the African Union (AU). President Dr. Abdul Kalam announced the willingness of Government of India to provide seamless and integrated satellite, fiber optics and wireless network connecting 53 African countries including Eritrea during the Pan African Parliament, Johannesburg , on 16 Sept 2004 . The PAN assignment estimated cost is about US $105 million and it will be carried out through a grant from the Government of India (GOI). PAN connects AU members through a satellite and fiber optic network, which would provide effective tele-education, telemedicine, and VOIP services (Direct connection between Heads of States). It strengthens e-Governance, e-Commerce, infotainment, resource mapping and meteorological services.

Ministry of External Affairs (MEA, Govt. of India) and Telecommunications Consultants India Limited (TCIL) are supervising this project. Different AU member countries like Burkina Faso , Burundi , Cote d'Ivoire ( Ivory Coast ), Djibouti , Ethiopia , Gambia , Ghana , Mauritius , Tanzania , Senegal and Seychelles have signed the agreements with the TCIL. The hub for the network is likely to be located in Senegal . The proposed network will link five regional universities, 53 learning centres, 5 regional super specialty hospitals and 53 remote hospitals from African countries and 6 universities and 5 super specialty hospitals from India will coordinate in the network (http://www.tcil-india.com/new/html/PANAfrica.html). North East Africa particularly Ethiopia has already been started a pilot project and will be the first beneficiary of the PAN project.

The ICT experiment testing is already done in this direction to strengthen connectivity of all African countries. This will provide three Connectivity channels like (i) Heads of the State Network for e-governance, (ii) Tele-education network for higher education, skill enhancement and capacity building, and (iii) Tele-medicine for providing health care and super specialty medi-care. This network will be in position by early 2007. Eritrea as a part of Horn of Africa should concentrate as part of human development on the following aspects like:

· Eradication of poverty;

· Universal primary education;

· Gender equality and empowerment of women;

· Reducing the child mortality;

· Improvement of maternal health; and

· The development of a regional partnership for development.

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No. 84, 27 th December 2006
Part-II

The HRD Efforts in ICT in Eritrea

The Government of Eritrea recognizes that globalization is a reality, and if Eritrea is to benefit and prosper in a global economy, the country must empower its citizens with the knowledge, skills and attitudes to compete in the global market. --- Education is the chief mechanism of government to build a responsive citizenry. In a rapidly changing world, education must be flexible and adaptable to change, and must also recognize and respond to the human resource capacity needs both domestically and internationally”. (Framework for Integration of ICT, National Curriculum of Eritrea , Ministry of Education, Eritrea , July 2005:1). Mr. Osman Saleh , Minister of Education, has identified his over all vision of ICT in Education, which lays the foundation of recent policy directives and this National Feasibility Study for ICT in Education:

•  “ICT in education as a key contributor to improving the quality of education in Eritrea , and engendering life-long learning skills, such as information processing, critical thinking and problem solving.

•  ICT will be integrated both vertically and horizontally through out the educational provision of Eritrea .

•  A top priority will be given to providing access to ICT in remote areas of the country, people with special needs, and girls.

•  ICT will be utilized to support training and continued professional development of teachers, management and operations staff, and the public at large” (National Feasibility: 16).

Eritrea is developing a new national curriculum in all sub-sectors of education. The MoE sees ICT as an integral part of the education experience, and envisions ICT to be consideration at all levels and across all subjects achieved by the curriculum. Courses will be developed primarily by the Department of General Education (DGE) with assistance from teachers having developed their own curriculum, and will cover basic operations of computers, and a variety of productivity software. Secondary and technical schools either have computers labs, or will be the first to receive them” (Framework: 4).Currently, the integrated ICT in Education is initiated in Eritrea through

•  Development of a National Policy for ICT in Education
•  Feasibility Study for ICT in Education and
•  National Curriculum Framework for ICT in Education.

All three policies will strengthen Education Sector Development Programme (ESDP) to move forward in a defined policy framework and strategic environment (National Feasibility: 16). The budget for ESDP ICT program in Phase-1 is US$ 8044,000, Phase-2 is US$ 4309,000.50 and Phase-3 is US$17,480,000.90 (National Feasibility: 67-81). The MoE is taking the lead to define National Policy relates to ICT having different objectives like to identify important components of effective ICT integration to build awareness among the entire education sector, to outline a cross-sector strategy for pragmatic implementation of the policy to help integrate processes and minimize wastage and to narrow the “digital divide” by addressing key constraints through the use of ICT.

•  National Policy for ICT in Education

Eritrea fully embraces the Millennium Development Goals affirmed by the United Nations and that ICT plays an integral part of the process in meeting these goals(National Policy for ICT in Education for Eritrea, Ministry of Education, July 2005: 2). These goals are 1) Eradicate poverty and hunger, 2) Universal primary education for all, 3) Promote gender equality an empower women, 4) Reduce child mortality, 5) Combat HIV/AIDS, 6) Ensure environmental sustainability, and 7) Improve maternal health.

•  National Feasibility Study on ICT in Education

The MoE has secured multi-lateral donor funding to support the 5-year planned education capacity development in Eritrea SUCH AS The World Bank, Africa Development Bank, The Netherlands, Norway, The Government of Eritrea (National Feasibility Study on ICT in Education in Eritrea, Ministry of Education, July 2005 :5). ESDP approaches secondary enrollment and completion from 23% to 35% by 2009, and to reach gender parity by 2009. Strategies include: upgrading and provision of schools and classrooms, expansion of teacher training output, rapid dissemination of ICT facilities and related training in schools (National Feasibility: 5). A World Bank study calls for improvement of the budgetary planning system by --- installation of ICT services (Eritrea Education and Training Sector Note, July 2002, The World Bank Report NO. 24448-ERI). Another study concludes that ‘relevant and substantial ICT in education programs can open new ‘digital opportunities for developing countries --- like Eritrea ( Eritrea : Opportunities ands Challenges for Introducing Educational Technology in Secondary School, May 2003: World Links).

The most comprehensive ICT training organized by the MoE took place in CTTC, University of Asmara, in Spring 2005 that sponsored by the World Links NGO based in Washington, DC, the one-week program trained 100 teachers are using ICT for teaching and learning. WL also sponsored the training of 50 schools directors in basic ICT skills, ICT tools for administration, the basic e-mail skills(National Feasibility: 37). WL has programs in over 20 countries around the world, and maintains an open online community of educators that share ideas, lessons, and experiences with the community. In addition to the 126 computers for the 6 pilot schools, WL has also secured 384 additional refurbished computers for Eritrea . The FAIR is a Norwegian NGO aiding developing countries and supplying computer networks and training. Currently, FAIR is working in Zoba Northern Red Sea, installing network computer labs of 50 computers in 4 secondary schools, and 3 middle secondary schools. By 2005/2006, all 7 FAIR computer labs will be installed, and all teachers trained to administer the lab (National Feasibility: 57-58).

•  Framework for Integration of ICT

The ESDP and ICT are working under the common objectives that highlight to inform the education community of the intent and plans of the MoE for ICT in education, to travel to all Zoba capitals for first-hand assessment and analysis of the ‘State of-Play' of current infrastructure and human resource capacity for installing and using computers for teaching and learning in local secondary schools, to identify cost components important for accurate budget development for procurement, installation, and maintenance of ICT in secondary schools and technical schools and to provide options doer connecting computers to the Internet in secondary schools (National Feasibility: 28).

The Computer labs are planned to contain up to 50 computers. To coordinate, facilitate, and produce multimedia and related ICT materials for education purposes, the ICT Unit, the departments of Adult & Media Education, Technical & Vocational Education Training (TVET) and DGE will establish a media development steering committee coordinated by the ICT Unit'. Sector-wide implementation of the new curriculum will take from 3 to 5years, depending on the level. The MoE will look closely at satellite transmission solution for piloting curriculum. The MoE website will then become an archive of experiences important for creating a support system for teachers (Framework: 5-10).

Tertiary Education, particularly Department of Computer Science at the Eritrea Institute of Technology (EIT) will play important role in ICT strategies for General Education. The Faculty of Education, the Department of Computer Science and other relevant areas of study at EIT will collaborate with HRD at the MoE to identify instructors, tutors, or mentors to help in the administration of the distance learning program for teacher upgrade. The strategies for adult literacy include developing an awareness campaign for ICT among illiterate adults utilizing all types of media, grade resources for reading and writing. Programs (cove health, environment, civic issues, agriculture, and programs for teaching methodology, early childhood education and HIV/AIDS) are developed in local languages (Framework: 15-20). TVET provides job skill programs in a technical schools and 3 advanced technical schools in Eritrea TVET agricultural programs will work closely together in developing strategies for implementing ICT into Agriculture field under mother tongue (Framework:21-22).

The ICT Unit of MoE will develop a series of awareness and orientation seminars and workshops for policy makers to help develop the conceptual framework among educators, especially for application of ICT for teaching and learning in both formal and non-formal sectors of education. The MoE website will include a public awareness aspect as well. The educational aspects of the MoE website will be coordinated by the ICT Panel at the DGE, working closely with the MoE ICT Unit, and liaising with the AME and TVET.

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No. 85, 30 th December 2006
Part-III


Today, new technologies are rapidly reshaping the livelihoods of people throughout the world. The Operations Officer for Eritrea Education Sector Development- Program Management Unit (ESDP-PMU) (during his discussion on 09.10.2006), examines, “Teacher professional development in the use of technology in the classroom will enhance and improve the capabilities of teachers through a relevant teacher professional development programs in the use of technology, including computer literacy skills training and more advanced professional development in the pedagogical application of those skills. Workshops, seminars and short courses (160 hours or more as per the plan) will be developed and”. He further emphasizes, “The specific training workshops will be held for school directors of the 50 schools targeted under the Eritrea Education Sector Improvement Program (EESIP), along with other key administrative personnel at the Zoba and Sub-Zoba levels”. Mr. Haddish Tesfamariam observes, “ All the selected secondary schools (50 in number) having strength of 2000 students will be offered a computer laboratory with 25-30 computers and the provision of two laboratories depending on the student strength will be kept. It is expected that 16 schools currently be connected to the Internet using dial-up ISP ”.

ESDP-PMU sources advertised for the procurement of IT and Office Equipment for Secondary schools and mentions, “ The State of Eritrea has received a loan from the African Development Fund (ADF) in the amount of UA 13,600,000.00 towards the cost of the Eritrea Education Sector Development Program, and intends to apply part of the proceeds of the loan to cover eligible payments under the contracts for the supply of IT and Office Equipment for Secondary schools. Bidding is open to all bidders from eligible member countries as defined in the Africa Development Bank's (ADB) Rules of Procedure for the Procurement of Goods and Works and the last date for application is on or before 14:00 local time on December 18, 2006” (Eritrea Profile, vol.13, NO.62, Dated 11 th October 2006). “The ADF project will equip 30 science laboratories and 40 workshops at a total of 30 schools (Table-1) and by providing 20 computer laboratories and 400 sets of computers to 20 schools. It will also provide reference and library books, as well as teaching aids for 50 schools. To enhance the quality of teaching at the secondary level, the government has embarked on recruiting highly qualified teachers internationally, on a cost-effective basis, to meet rising enrolments as a provisional measure over a 5-year period, pending the training of Eritreans in teacher training institutes and at university level.

Table-1 Appraisal Report for ADF Support to ESDP                                                             000 US $

A) Goods

Unit

Nos

Total

Equipment for Laboratories (30 labs@20,000 in 10 schools)

Lot

30

719,275

Eqipment for workshops (40 workshops @15,000 in 20 schools)

Lot

40

719,275

Refernce and library books (50 schools@7500)

Lot

50

449,547

Teaching aid materails (50 schools@3,000)

Lot

50

179,819

Computers, software and printers (400 sets @ 1500 for 20 schools

Lot

400

719,275

Total: Goods

 

 

2,787,190

Source: Africa Development Fund, Education Sector Development Programme, June 2004

It is worth noting that Eritrea is using internationally recruited teachers because the number of Eritreans in the teaching force is not enough. As the trained Eritreans take over the teaching positions, the internationally recruited teachers will be gradually phased out. Based on projections of demand for teachers, the project provides for the financing of 450 person/years of teachers, mainly in the areas of science, math and technology. To optimize the effectiveness teachers, the government will strengthen the present orientation, guidance and counseling already being provided to arriving teachers. --- The international recruitment of teachers as a transition measure will enable at least 30,000 Eritreans to gain access to quality education”. ( Africa Development Fund, Education Sector Development Programme, June 2004:20).

ICT in Education and its Role in Eritrean Society

The pace of technical change is increasing and it is beyond the capacity of society to understand and manage its impact. Technical change has helped people in their daily battle for survival. Despite the potential of new technologies to change the livelihoods of people living in poverty, Eritrea Institute of Technology (EIT) and other education institutions should plan to strengthen its limited access to appropriate technologies as well as information and knowledge about technical options. From a long-term perspective, people living in poverty need to be able to adapt and select and use the technology that suits them according to their own discretion with the help of their children studying for example in EIT. Moreover, EIT provides the computer subject to all disciplines (Arts, Social Science, Commerce and Science) entitled Introduction to Computer Science to all students admitted as freshman.

Technology innovations are vital for growth and poverty reduction in developing countries. ICT and Human Development Efforts in Eritrea are recognized as a major determinant of economic growth. The irony is that the technologies to meet these needs are growing in Eritrea , but they are not accessible to the people who need them most. EIT should initiate in this direction as a case study and advertise short term orientation courses, Certificate, Diploma and Degree courses in ICT to its students and non-teaching employees. There should be sufficient courses to nearby villages like Daro-Paulos, Adi-rasi, Adem-nager, Kutmo-awlie, Ababarda, Himbirti , Adi-gabrai and Gebre-keflet to create awareness about ICT and its use in agriculture development and others among people living in these villages in their regional languages.

The fact that ICT transfer has no direct link to poverty reduction stems from the reality that most poor people do not depend on employment in the formal sector, where Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) is directed. The livelihoods of the great majority of the poor people in developing countries depend on micro and small-scale enterprises. An understanding of the relationship between capability and human development is critical to making technology transfers applicable to poverty reduction. A certain capability to absorb, select and adapt technologies to local settings and to develop new technologies through local innovation must be present for effective technology transfer across all levels from teaching institutes to household & national level. At the household level this means a thorough knowledge of information systems and integrated social networks as well as local knowledge in their respective language through EIT network (as a major research project/case-cum-area study that may result future direction to the ICT programme and strengthen Pan-Africa network) . At the national level, this involves a national framework that considers innovative systems accommodating a range of institutions and policies. The key focus should be on integrating national technology policies and innovation systems with poverty reduction strategies. Participatory technology development has shown to be effective as a means of choosing the most appropriate technology. Enabling access to new technologies consists of making more productive technologies available through technology transfer and providing an environment, which includes institutional and financial support to the marginalized people. The vital factor is not just bringing new technologies to the door step of the people but addressing their organizational, management and marketing skills, opening new channels of information and knowledge and making credit and markets more accessible.

Political Economy of COMESA in the Changing International Scenario
Need to Execute Affirmative Peace and Free Trade Zone
Dr. Suresh Kumar
Eritrea Profile, vol.13, No.75, November 25, 2006


Introduction

The Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) is working to promote regional integration through trade development, and to develop their natural and human resources for the mutual benefit of all their peoples. The 11th summit of the COMESA held in Djibouti on 15-16 November 2006. COMESA is a preferential trading area with twenty member states (Angola, Burundi, Comoros, Congo Kinshasa, Djibouti, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Libya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mauritius, Rwanda, Seychelles, Sudan, Swaziland, Uganda, Zambia and Zimbabwe). It formed in December 1994, replacing a Preferential Trade Area which had existed since 1981. Nine of the member states formed a free trade area (FTA) in 2000, with Rwanda and Burundi joining the FTA in 2004 and the Comoros and Libya in 2006. The idea of common brotherhood persuaded Djibouti (the tiny, poor Horn state) to involve COMESA state leaders to promote regional integration through trade development and to develop their natural and human resources for mutual benefit of this region. The member states agreed to promote a free trade flow among them to achieve economic revival and the establishment of free trade zone and custom union. It is realized that peace and stability will be achieved by solving continuous security-threat among the member-states of the region itself. COMESA efforts to achieve the goal of a free trade zone is initiated in practice under the leadership of H.E. President Isaias Afwerki, The State of Eritrea, who traveled from Asmara to Mulhai, a town of Djibouti by road and covered 1000 KM and came back after COMESA Summit by sea reached at Assab Port on 17th and arrived in Massawa on 18th November traveling by road. It clearly affirms Eritrea's commitment towards regional integration and development. It will facilitate the common people movement within the region through least expensive transport facilities. Along with it, the Khartoum-Asmara road link is also providing a good gesture for the people's movement. H.E. Osman Mohammed El-Bashir, Second Secretary, in the Embassy of Republic of Sudan in Asmara shared emerging prospects of COMESA and explained during his discussion with me that Khartoum-Asmara link is in the beginning stage and good luxurious Buses will be provided to facilitate the people of this region along with the tourists for a comfortable journey very soon. United Nations Office of the High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States endorsed at the Inter-agency meeting convened on 4 February 2004, New York, “While improvement of transport infrastructure is a long-term project, trade facilitation measures are crucial in increasing the efficiency of the use of existing facilities by simplifying the requirements, harmonizing the procedures and documentations, standardizing commercial practices, and introducing agreed codes for presentation of information elements. There is increased awareness of the need for well-coordinated, coherent and systematic technical assistance in the area of transport and trade facilitation. There is also a strong need for coordination and coherence at the national and sub-regional levels”.

The idea of free trade zone through Road, Railway and Sea expected to be the biggest in Africa when it is completed in 2008. This plan fortifies by the development of a new terminal at Doraale in Djibouti in which the DPW has invested US$ 400 million in regard to the systems and processes of integration (www.afrolnews.com). President Paul Paul Kagame implored during the Summit address, “Now in our twenty second year of building COMESA, it is appropriate to pose questions along the same lines as the theme of this Summit: Is the pace of achieving our vision of becoming a prosperous Customs Union adequate? Are we indeed deepening our regional integration? He called for individual country sacrifices, observing that the 'perceived losses' in terms of revenue were superficial, giving room to smaller markets and, a hindrance to the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) and regional integration initiatives” (www.allafrica.com). Keeping the same pace of free trade zone, COMESA has developed a large number of regional programmes, which are assisting Member States in a positive way to attain economic recovery and sustainable economic growth over the past fourteen years.

Enumerating the challenges, President Kagame cited the “internal conflicts in the Sudan and Somalia, and the border tension between Ethiopia and Eritrea, observing that they hinder integration”. Obviously these conflicts constitute a threat to our regional integration. Kagame has urged his COMESA counterparts, to strengthen peace initiatives in the region in a bid to attain sustainable integration. The President, who was handing over the COMESA chair to Djibouti President Ismael Omar Guelleh, noted that there was need to assess the progress registered by the COMESA institutions”(www.allafrica.com). This is the beginning and essential prerequisite to achieve for sustainable socio-economic and political integration in terms of real peace and stability in the region.

1. Peace Initiative

Many conflicts raging in Africa have underlined the fact that, if it does not address political issues properly, COMESA cannot achieve economic growth. "We cannot achieve our [economic] objective when there is no peace in the region, and when brother is rising against brother in wars that destroy the productive capacity [of our countries]," Kenyan President Daniel Arap Moi said in his inaugural address to the fourth COMESA summit (Al-Ahram Weekly, 27 May - 2 June 1999, Issue No. 431). The maintenance of peace and security is a critical ingredient for development. There is a need to evaluate the constitutional reforms in Republic of Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Kingdom of Swaziland and Zimbabwe today really require the unity and brotherhood of the region in implementing constitution through democratic practices. It is the time to propagate the Post Peace Accord 14th October, 2006 development in Sudan and other efforts that will help to give the exact information's to the public on the one hand and counter western media pseudo-propaganda on the other hand. It is important to mention here that under the theme of indigenous problem is solved by indigenous people and no external interference is required, the leaders of Eritrea, Libya, Sudan, Egypt, Chad and the Central African Republic accepted the invitation of Col. Muammar Al-Khadafi and discussed the Darfur Issue (Sudan) in length.

President Isais observed during the COMESA summit that ‘Eritrea's stand on the issue of Somalia is clear and firm. It emanates from the historical ties and friendship, which the Somali people extended to the just struggle of the Eritrean people for liberation. Hence, Eritrea remains keen to extend political encouragement to the just cause of the Somali people to create a ground for national reconciliation, dialogue and enable Somalis to live in peace and harmony. There is no other agenda whatsoever beyond that. National reconciliation of Somalis as well as promoting stability in Somalia has a substantial role to play to regional peace and mutual benefit'. President Isaias assured ‘Kenyan leader during his meeting that in view of its historical relations with Somalia and the positive role it had played in Somali history in the past, has equally a major role to play in resolving the prevailing problem in Somalia' (Eritrea Profile, Vol. 13, No.73, 18 November 2006). H.E. President Omar Hassan Al-Bashir, The Republic of Sudan explained the positive contribution of Eritrea during the Peace Accord 2006 in the COMESA Summit and cherished the role of Eritrea. 2. Free Trade Zone

This idea of free trade zone is easily understood through the geo-economic position of member-states as mentioned in Table-1. This region is having a potential of vast market to cater the needs of Africa continent itself. All the member states possess a strong geo-economic position and need a link for mutual interaction. Today, these trading arrangements are envisaged to foster trade and investment relations amongst member countries by removal tariffs and other impediments to intra-regional trade flows.

Table-1 Geo-economic position of COMESA

Area (km 2 )

Population

GDP (PPP) (US $)
In millions per capita

Member States

12,873,957

406,102,471

735,599

1,811

20

Source: Wikipedia, 2006, the free encyclopedia.com

World Development Indicators, 2005, World bank shows that COMESA has been one of the most successful in terms of enhancing trade within the member countries that was as high as US $ 1.8 billion in 2002. Information obtained by The New Times indicates that since the inception of COMESA Free Trade Area in 2000, it has expanded from about $2bn to $6bn. It (COMESA) now has a challenge of establishing a Customs Union in December 2008. The success of the Free Trade Zone (FTZ) would depend critically on the ability of producers to exploit economies of scale arising from an increase in market size, where size of the market would in turn depend on the volume of expenditure inside the bloc and not on its population (Table-1).

COMESA charter in the field of economic and social development under Article 4 (VI a) says, “Harmonize the methodology of collection, processing and analysis of information required to meet the objectives of the common market”. The new COMESA chairman, President of Republic of Djibouti, Ismael Omar Guelleh has urged member states of COMESA, to strengthen economic integration imperatives and warned that unless focus is centered on strengthening democracy, corruption, good governance and security, economic integration would not bear the desired fruits (The New Times, Kigali, November 11, 2006). Globalization is a reality today and has come to stay. It is thus paramount that COMESA finds sustainable solutions to it and develops a new image for the economic bloc.

Conclusion

Today, it is indisputable that the maintenance of peace is a major precondition for socio-economic development in any country or region. It would be useful if the sovereign Member States of COMESA were to allow the organization to play an effective role in the promotion of peace and security whether it is the case of Somalia integration, Sudan peace processes, Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission implementation, constitutional reforms in Republic of Burundi, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Kingdom of Swaziland and Zimbabwe. The Post COMESA meeting of The Djibouti ambassador to Sudan highlighted positive efforts in realizing reconciliation among its people through the implementation of the Darfur peace agreements. A national reconciliation that Ambassador said will be “translated by more tangible actions not only in the east but also in southern Sudan and mention further that the exemplary gesture by the Sudanese government to host in Khartoum a Somalia reconciliation conference will continue in the coming time”(Sudan Tribune, 20 August 2006). Overall, the peace and development issue today grasped its real importance and the region felt brotherhood during peace accord 2006 of East Sudan in Eritrea. Along with it, it is quite clear from the African experience that issues of economic development and integration cannot be dealt in isolation from peace and security issues, both aspects have to be addressed hand in hand. There is a need for all sub-regional groupings (like EAC, ECOWAS, IGAD, IOC, SADC and SACU) to cooperate in addressing issues of peace and security in order to avoid duplication of effort.


Education for All, Job for All in Eritrea : An Analysis

Dr. Suresh Kumar

MOE Newsletter, Volume I, № 3, July-September 2006

Published in November14th, 2006

The Concept Paper for a Rapid Transformation of the Eritrean Educational System (July 2002) on education clearly reflects this motto and writes, “ Education must be employment oriented such that at the end of any level of education any person can find employment commensurate with the person’s level of education or training”. The education system is encouraged to connect with agriculture sector, small, medium and large industries, agro-industry, health sector, technical institutions and industrial training institute. The Education Development Program (ESDP) is the beginning in the series of education reforms. ESDP mentions, “ All doors and opportunities must be open to Eritreans of all ages to develop to their full potential both professionally and personally.” The entire eight technical schools enrollment is increasing every year. Out of that, the enrollment for the year 2004/2005 is highest in Asmara Technical School having 479 students, followed by Mai-Haber Technical School 343, Hagaz Agro-Technical School 282 and the lowest is in Asmara Music School having 46 students enrollment and the total enrollement in all technical scholl are 2018 (PRO, Ministry of Education, June 13, 2006). The total graduates of 2004/05 are 542.

TVET Department graduates studies different programmes such as Agro-Mechanics, Animal Science, Auto-Mechanics, Building Construction, Drafting, Electricity, Electronics, Horticulture, Machine Shop, Metal, Plant Science, Surveying, Veterinary, Wood Work and 657 passed their graduation in the year 2006.The total TVET intermediate school enrollment right from 1991 to 2005 is 32,764 and female student is 7510 and TVET advanced student enrollment from 1996 to 2005 is 3928 and female student is 856 (Ministry of Education, 2006). The technical skill and training is given with the consultation of local industries, to build employment opportunities in their respective fields.

Similarly, the employment of all technical student’s priority in industrial sector is increasing day by day. The Ministry of Industry 2004 presents the medium and large scale manufacturing establishments are 276. Food industry today dominates in this sector, which coordinates between farmers and Agro-industries. The medical sector is improving now. School of Health Technology , Orotta School of Medicine, Dental College and Pharmacy College will build the doctors, nurses, dentist, pharmacist and medical specialists. Eritrea Institute of Technology (EIT) starts enrolling students interested in engineering, medical, aeronautical engineering, agriculture, finance & commerce and marine sciences (recently shifted to Massawa). EIT is planning to introduce Under-Graduate and Post-graduate courses in science, social science and commerce, which will carry forward EIT higher education and enroll its first batch to PhD students in 2011.The curriculum of science and social science is combined. All students choose and study these courses as per their interest, which develops a scientific temper. The entire graduate adopts National University Service as Graduate Assistant for one year and gets ac chance to learn and mingling with Professors. It helps in developing an analytical skill while dealing with society and strengthens their approach to higher education.

The slogan ‘Job for All’ is directly related to education. At present, approximately ninety five percent of school, college and university teaching services are through Asian communities. Young Eritreans after their graduate services are either choosing school teaching or pursuing post graduation to opt college teaching in their carrier. All the technical school qualified students are getting opportunities in different industrial sector as per their competence.

The Adult Literacy Programme provides free education, which will help them to become integer part of educated society. The Ministry of Education and the University of Asmara launched an Open and Distance Learning Program on 29 March 2006 . It gives another opportunity to young married couples, employed people and shop-keepers to get educated, which will help them to guide their future generations as educated tutors.

Overall, education and job opportunity will solve the prevailing problems in Eritrea on the one hand and strengthen the purchasing power of society on the other hand. Along with it, the employed educated person understands the process of socio-economic development, need of Sawa, border dispute and international propaganda and shows his/her genuine concern towards society and state.

Contemporary Decade of Dollar Diplomacy and Pseudo-Propaganda of

Ethiopia in International Politics

No More Fallacy and Disrespect to International Law

Dr. Suresh Kumar

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No.69, November 4th , 2006

Part-I

Introduction

 

Today, the people to people contact is appreciated in the region and Horn of Africa recognizes the indigenous solution to indigenous problems. Peace Accord 2006 is the beginning of the peace lovers that determines to bring peace and development in this region in general and Sudan in particular. Eritrea and its neighborhood countries affirm the goals of peace and development in Horn and that’s why, Arab-Horn of Africa is working to achieve the peaceful solution in Somalia . Along with it, it is felt to strengthen and reinforce the ongoing peace process and government stability in different countries in Horn of Africa on the one hand and require building Ethiopia-Sudan-Eritrea-Kenya-Somalia-Djibouti relations for the peaceful co-existence that will surely strengthen IGAD and Horn of Africa for political, economic, social unity and development and substantiate all features of Unity in Diversity.

“Diplomacy is concerned with the management of relations between states and other actors”(Barston R.P., Modern Diplomacy, 1988:1). Diplomacy is the means to articulate, coordinate and secure particular or wider interests, negotiate and persuade others for their own interests, lobbying, and using threats as a last resort in international politics. Today, at one level the changes in the substantive form of diplomacy are reflected in terms such as ‘dollar diplomacy’, ‘oil diplomacy’, ‘resource diplomacy’, and ‘atomic diplomacy’(Modern Diplomacy:1). Ethiopia has its own dream of dollar diplomacy through international financial aid and support and fulfills their targets by spreading disunity in the region through TPLF. One may call it -- a neocolonial vision of expansionist policy to flourish the idea of Disunity in Diversity under the banner of Ethiopia. The dollar diplomacy seeks political Pseudo-propaganda policy to influence international politics through MYTH is clearly reflected in the ideology of Prime Minister H.E. Mr. Meles Zenawi (Since he attained political power by overriding majority people’s opinion) since more than a decade.

“This is the recent statement of Mr. Meles regarding the question raised by some parliamentarians about its relation with neighbouring countries on 29th October 2006. He addressed Ethiopia's relationship with its neighbours, especially Somalia and Eritrea and said that the country had a good contact with the internationally recognized Transitional Federal Government (TFG) of Somalia based in Baidoa” (Source: [dehai-news] allafrica.com: Ethiopia: Meles Speaks On Economy, Somalia, Eritrea. Sun Oct 29 2006 - 16:28:30 EST) is a part of his Pseudo-propaganda by declaring on behalf of international community about TFG recognition.

Dollar Diplomacy and EEBC

With respect to relations with Eritrea, Mr. Meles said, “Eritrea openly violated the Algiers Agreement by sending troops and tanks into the demilitarized zone. At this moment, the Transitional Security Zone does not exist in practice as Eritrean military personnel backed by tanks moved into the area" (Source: dehai-news). But the Acting Commissioner for Coordination with the UN Peacekeeping Mission in Eritrea and Ethiopia (UNMEE), Colonel Zekarias Oqbagabir noted that the Eritrean Defense Force (EDF) that fully abides by the rule of law is engaged in development tasks within its own sovereign territory (Eritrea Profile, No. 64, 18th October 2006).

Mr. Meles further said that ‘despite the violations of the Algiers Agreement by Eritrea, Ethiopia was ready to peacefully solve the problem. He recalled that the five-point peace proposal, which was offered by Ethiopia in 2004, still stood and the country was ready to pay any sacrifices to reach a peaceful settlement’ (Source: dehai-news). Earlier, the statement by H.E. Ambassador Negash Kebret, Deputy Permanent Representative of Ethiopia to the United nations at the 61st Session of the UN General Assembly, New York, 27 September 2006, “That is why Ethiopia will not allow its dispute with Eritrea to distract it from its focus on development, although this is the main mission of Eritrea since the conflict began eight years ago. For the last four years, Eritrea has been blaming Ethiopia for its own aggression against us and for the current stalemate in peace and demarcation process. And in fact now, the whole world is blamed for Eritrea’s own failure and for its inability to behave like a normal state” is a crude form of dollar diplomacy that persuaded either by the Prime Minister or his representative to speak on behalf of whole world. The EEBC Declaration, 12th April 2002 and the war liability on Ethiopia is evidence against their philosophy of Pseudo-propaganda. Not only that, Ambassador Shu Zhan of China said, “The Chinese government is actually very concerned about this issue. We believe that if this dispute is not resolved soon then it will continue to harm the peoples on both sides. We support and advocate that the EEBC’s ruling should be implemented as soon as possible so that the people pon both sides can be relieved of their burden” (Eritrea Profile, vol.13, No.68, November 1st, 2006).

Prior to it, UNMEE News, October 2005 illustrated the Security Council Resolution extending the UNMEE Mission while expressing deep concern with the continued lack of progress in the implementation of the final and binding decision of the Eritrea-Ethiopia Boundary Commission (EEBC), “Calls upon Ethiopia to accept fully the decision of the Eritrea-Ethiopia Boundary Commission and to enable, without preconditions, the commission to demarcate the border completely and promptly” (p.4). The dichotomy of Ethiopian views is reflected and criticized in the UNMEE News clearly.

The outgoing SRSG Ambassador Legwaila Joseph Legwaila said to UNMEE News during his farewell, “I fear that if the border is not demarcated, we (Ethiopia-Eritrea) have another conflict in the future”(UNMEE News, March 2006, p.2) proves the real picture of Ethiopia dollar diplomacy that Ethiopia can go up to any extent to woo international donors .

There is no point to suggest further once the decision of Ethiopia and Eritrea Boundary Commission (EEBC) has come and signed by both the countries and members of international communities. But Mr. Negash said adamantly, “It would be recalled that in order to create a condition for sustainable peace and reestablish an all-rounded cooperation between the two countries, Ethiopia presented a Five-Point Plan, which the international community, including the Security Council, has welcomed but was flatly rejected by Eritrea” (61st Session of the UNGA, 27 September 2006) showed the height of their Pseudo-propaganda speaking continuously on behalf of international community. Moreover, the welcomed thing does not mean a binding ruling as per the international law. Did Security Council has ever rejected the EEBC report or any other international jury decision and suggest alternatives to find out the solution? This is not so, then why Mr. Negash suggested great illusion as an alternative to EEBC.

Why Mr. Negash always speaks about Eritrea Ethiopia Claims Commission (EECC) and never ever mentions or shares the country’s plan to implement the recommendations of EEBC, which is only recognized by international community and international law. Keeping aside the International Law, Mr. Negash said, “The Commission (EECC) decision does not only show Eritrea’s warped understanding of international law but confirms in an unambiguous manner that Eritrea’s illegal act constituted aggression” (61st Session of the UNGA, 27 September 2006), shows the sincerity of Head of State on behalf of his spokesperson. He further said, “---to resolve the current impasse with the assistance of a neutral facilitator in the demarcation process;” (61st Session of the UNGA, 27 September 2006) --- clearly shows the unambiguous pseudo-propagandist nature in the foreign policy of Ethiopia. Mr. Negash added, “I would like, in this connection, to assure the international community that we shall continue to preserve in our search for a lasting peace” (61st Session of the UNGA, 27 September 2006). It is (Ethiopia) contempt of international law to show disrespect to EEBC or any international decision recognized by international organization like UNO and Ethiopia needs appropriate action under contempt of International Law.

Mr. Negash shamelessly carries forward State philosophy of Pseudo-Propaganda and perturbed, “Let it be underlined that Eritrea has no reason for frustration because of the lack of speedy implementation of demarcation” (61st Session of the UNGA, 27 September 2006) and threatened further, “Eritrea should behave as a responsible state and resolve any dispute through diplomatic means. Eritrea has to understand that this is its only option” (61st Session of the UNGA, 27 September 2006). This statement clearly shows the nature of Ethiopian State that either accepts the directives of Ethiopia, forgets EEBC implementation or face the Pseudo-propaganda that may move to any extent in search of dollar against Eritrea.

UNMEE News, February 2006 mentioned that “The Temporary Security Zone (TSZ) was created by 2001 and UNMEE mission to keep the two armies separated so that peace can continue to reign across the border” (p.2). Why State of Ethiopia shows a total different concern in the cases and not respecting EEBC decision as well as recognizing TFG and speaking about it. It should be noted down that Ethiopia’s (Under its neo-colonial policies) common interest is involved while dealing both the countries and that is related to expand their border and grab more and more land area from Eritrea and Somalia. He concludes by saying, “---Let me reiterate Ethiopia’s devotion to the United Nations and to the values of our interdependence which the organization embodies” (61st Session of the UNGA, 27 September 2006) and involves UNO in its grand design of dollar diplomacy and to promote (Dollar Master’s) neo-colonial annexation.

It is the time to recall them that they already had signed Algiers Peace Agreement and refused to implement it on the one hand and suggesting alternatives to EEBC decision from their own side like EECC, Five-Point Peace Plan, diplomatic means and other to turned down international agreement (Obviously EEBC decision does not suit to Ethiopia but they signed just to save their skin) on the other hand showed Ethiopia’s legitimate concern towards dollar diplomacy.

Part-II

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No.70, November 8, 2006

Dollar Diplomacy and Somalia

Mr. Meles also strengthened his philosophy of Pseudo-propaganda and explained why Ethiopian military personnel entered Somalia by saying, “The decision taken by both IGAD and AU to send peacekeepers from neighbouring countries can be taken as a basis” (Source: dehai-news) shows the concern of these two regional organizations but never authorized Ethiopia to intervene in Somalia till today. Can other IGAD members opt for the same tactics and send their army in Somalia either in favour of TFG or Sharia Courts Force? It is clear here that Ethiopian Prime Minister made himself the self-declared de-facto leader of IGAD and AU and took decision to send his army on the name of these organizations. Mr. Meles further said that it didn't mean that Ethiopia was declaring an open war but he cannot give assurance that Ethiopia won't go to war (Source: dehai-news) shows his genuine intention of REAL WAR to promote dollar diplomacy.

Mr. Negash earlier depicted the State desire to extend this philosophy for Somalia as well and said, “There are those who want to wish away the danger in Somalia. There are on the other hand those who want to benefit from the danger. That the letter, among whom Eritrea is one, take advantage of the naiveté of the former is obvious” (61st Session of the UNGA, 27 September 2006) shows Ethiopia’s shrewdness design on the one side and to save Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF, the militant organization) who has entirely crossed into Somalia to overthrow the government on the name of Sharia law.

The civil war and exacerbating instability and chaos in Somalia through neighbouring countries was raised during the IGAD meeting in Nairobi in June 2006. The Somalia delegation informed the member-states that the deliberate smear campaign to strengthen interest strife is a part of external politics of countries and IGAD and African Union should facilitate an encouraging environment for the United Somalia. The process of united Somalia will play a constructive role in stabilizing the Horn of Africa region. The totally isolated opinion of Mr. Negash in the General Assembly was, “What is asked by IGAD and by the AU is political and diplomatic support to that the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) would be in a position to contain those that are the agents of, not love but disharmony, not peace but war” (61st Session of the UNGA, 27 September 2006) contradicts with the Prime Minister Mr. Meles noted above.

History of Fallacy and Disrespect to International Law

There is a need to look back to historical evidences, which confirms Ethiopia fallacy and disrespect to international law particular Post 1997 period of war between Ethiopia and Eritrea and its effects. The background to the current border dispute between Eritrea and Ethiopia is initiated through Ethiopia’s blatant act of aggression [in violation of the OAU charter and Resolution AHG/RES 16 (1) of the First Assemble of Heads of State and Government held in Cairo in 1964] focused on:

1. Declaration of War by Ethiopia’s Parliament on May13, 1998.

2. Launching of an Ethiopian air-strike on Asmara on June 5, 1998.

3. Imposition of an Air blockade and Maritime access to Eritrean port.

4. Mass expulsion and indiscriminate arrests of Eritreans in Ethiopia.

· Prime Minister Melles wrote to President Isaias on August 16, 1997, “We did not imagine that what happened in Bada could create problems. Because the areas our comrades are controlling were not controversial before and we believed that prior consultation was only necessary for disputed areas” (Important Documents on The Conflict, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Asmara).

· President Isaias wrote a personal letter to Prime Minister Melles Zenawi on August 25th 1997 protesting the forcible occupation of Adi-Murug in Bada by the Ethiopian army that mentions, “I have been compelled to write to you today because of the preoccupying situation prevailing in the areas around Bada. Regarding the situation in the border areas, my information establishes that the measures taken at Adi-Murug were not in areas that are undisputed but in our own areas---. However, the forcible occupation of Adi-Murug by your army in the past few days is truly saddening”. ---Moreover, similar measures have been taken in Badme area” (Important Documents on The Conflict, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Asmara). The declaration of EEBC in 2002 clearly justified President Isaias statement of 1997, which dismantle Ethiopia plan to misguide the world.

· The Statement of the Cabinet of Ministers of the Government of Eritrea, Asmara, May 20, 1998 was confirmed by the EEBC declaration on April 13th 2002 that needs to understand here in the present context mentioned,

“1. The Cabinet of Ministers examined in depth the main source and root cause of the crisis between Eritrea and Ethiopia. In this regards, the Cabinet of Ministers identified the Eritrean territories that lie within the internationally recognized boundary of Eritrea but that have now been incorporated into the Tigray Administrative Zone according to an official map issued by the Ethiopian Mapping Authority in 1997 (Annexure-1). The map carves out large swathes of Eritrean territory in the south western (Badme Area), southern (Tsorona and Alitena areas) and eastern parts (Bada) of the country”.

“ 3. ---, When the Ethiopian Government refused to heed these legitimate requests, the Government of Eritrea did not attempt to regain by force the occupied territories. Instead, it opted to seek a peaceful solution through bilateral negotiations and the formation of a Joint Committee”.

“5. The Government of Eritrea categorically asserts that it has not made any incursion into Ethiopian territory and reaffirms its readiness to facilitate inspection by any third party to verify the facts on the ground. Similarly, it calls for an independent investigation to ascertain the circumstances of the incident that occurred on May 6, 1998, and which accentuated the current crisis”.

· Further, Basic facts on the present tension between Eritrea and Ethiopia, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Asmara, May 23, 1998 stated that:

“1. The present crisis in the relations between Eritrea and Ethiopia was triggered on May 6, 1997 by an unprovoked Ethiopian armed attack on Eritrean troops in southwestern Eritrea. The fighting that ensued resulted in Eritrea bringing under its control the large swaths of its southwestern territory that Ethiopia had been occupying. Eritrean troops involved in the fighting stopped at Eritrea’s borders and did not infringe of Ethiopian territory”.

“8. The Government of Eritrea condemns the logic of force as it firmly knows and upholds that border disputes of any kind can only be resolved through peaceful and legal means; and not through military means”.

“9. The Eritrean government has welcomed, and cooperated without reservation with, the initiatives undertaken by friends and concerned parties to defuse the crisis and to facilitate a lasting solution. It will continue to do so until the problem is resolved”.

It is clearly mentioned that the government of Eritrea called upon Government of Ethiopia to respect Eritrea’s recognized international boundaries and withdraw its army from areas that it has occupied. The Government of Eritrea further appealed the international community to denounce Ethiopia’s acts of aggression in contravention of the Charters of the United Nations and the Organization of African Unity and to take measures to avert further aggravation of the current crisis in 1998. Along with it, both the Cabinet statements clearly reflected Eritrea’s faith in the international law, peaceful solution and brotherhood and this historical fact cannot be ignored either by Ethiopia or by the proprietor of dollar diplomacy.

· Speech of Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ethiopia in 34th Session of the Assembly of the Heads of State and Government of the OAU, 8-10 June 1998, Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso.

“--- As a result, Eritrea has now become not only an embarrassment to Africa but also a serious menace to peace and stability in to friendly relations between states, trust and mutual confidence which are all fundamental tenets in inter-state relations”.

This is sheer frustration of Ethiopia that showed its propaganda to establish Pseudo-ism on the one hand and carry on their evil activities on the other hand. It is Eritrea-Sudan-Djibouti-Somalia-Kenya-Yemen (except Ethiopia) that enjoying cordial friendly relations to each other and are encouraging peaceful agreements between different ground and developmental program with mutual co-existence.

· Mr. Meles Zenawi on VOA on June 21, 1998 said, “I never suspected that they would take a chauvinistic and a kind of card playing game on their people’s future and interests”. All his comment applies on Ethiopia people as the chauvinistic minority government disrespects the majority people today.

Part-III

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No.71, November 11th, 2006

· Statement of the 11th Session of the National Assembly of Eritrea, June 26, 1998.

A 1. The National Assembly asserted that the root cause of the conflict that has erupted between Eritrea and Ethiopia is the violation of the territorial integrity and sovereignty, as well as the naked aggression, perpetrated on Eritrea by the Ethiopian government that is currently controlled by the Tigray People’s Liberation Front”.

B 2. The National Assembly affirmed that this conflict between Eritrea and Ethiopia cannot be solved through force; but only through peace and legality”.

D-4. In conclusion, the national Assembly noted that the relationship that was cultivated with the EPLF and the government of Eritrea over 22 years has been severely damaged by invasion, terrorism and gross crimes perpetrated by the TPLF against the Eritrean people. --- The national Assembly thus calls on the Ethiopian people to contribute their part for a constructive peace and a solid relationship between Eritrea and Ethiopia”.

This statement undoubtedly certifies today that the TPLF militancy is the organ of these proprietors. TPLF maintains its terrorism till today and it was expressed clearly in TPLF (Bay of Pigs), Eritrea Profile, September 6, 2006 article. The international world is aware of TPLF mercenaries activities in Somalia and its allege relations with other militant organizations and dollar proprietors. The Eritrean ‘Peaceful Co-existence’ is always rejected and the Pseudo-peace lovers drum-beaters propagating ‘peace resurgence in Horn of Africa particularly in Somalia and sent TPLF’. Along with it, they supported Group song of neo-colonialist, worried about Darfur --- don’t know in theory or reality (to advance imperialism).

· PM Mr. Melles interview with Radio Ethiopia on July 9, 1998 at 8:30 P:M.

“---A foreigner can live in another country when the government believes that foreigner is useful to it. --- It is the right of Ethiopian government to expel Eritreans living in Ethiopia at any time. --- If we say to GO because we do not like the colour of your eyes, they have to leave”. He criticized the UNHCR when the organization took seriously about it. He said, “--- This being the truth, the statement issued by the person in charge of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, has astonished not only ourselves but also, we can say, many UN bodies.”

This statement showed Mr. Meles disrespect to human rights(HR) and accepted himself the HR violation against Eritreans and that was his style to express the truth clearly reflects his idea to deal with different Ethiopian communities even today. As a result, the armed force including higher officials and civilians are leaving the country and the massive demonstration against the government in Addis Ababa on October 4th 2006 showed the reality of Human Rights position exist there.

· OAU, Central Organ Summit , Ouagadougou , 17-18 December, 1998.

H.E. Isaias Afwerki address, “--- Eritrea is requesting of the OAU precise, legal language that will require the opinion of legal experts and ensure a speedy resolution, instead of leading to different interpretations and endless controversy”.

Even President Isaias forced to speak about pseudo-ism of Ethiopia and he said, “In the Aide Memoir that was sent by Ethiopia to your Excellencies and from which I quoted the previous phrases, they also accuse Eritrea of a “peculiar mentality”, a “malady”, “disdain of the OAU and international law” and “contempt for civilized behavior and civility”, all in language that, to say the last, is far from civil. Not content with misrepresenting the facts about the Eritrean-Ethiopian conflict, Ethiopia has also accused Eritrea of being a “source of tension and inter-state misunderstanding”, citing as proof Eritrea ’s relation with its neighbours”.

The statement of 1998 is valid today as one sees clearly the role of Eritrea in the Horn of Africa. Sudan and East Sudan agreement is signed on the land of Eritrea . Eritrea bilateral emerging relations with Yemen and Djibouti, Eritrea continuous efforts to bring peace and development in Somalia, strengthening ties with Kenya and people of Ethiopia respect towards Eritrea and its culture is a proof of Eritrea’s relations with its neighbours.

H.E. Isaias Afwerki said, “Even without an investigation, however, one fact is beyond dispute-Ethiopia’s continued refusal to renounce the use of force”.

This was substantiated during the verdict of Ethiopia Eritrea Boundary Commission [EEBC], and Ethiopia disrespect to EEBC declaration showed and proved it as aggressor in 1997 and 1998. But the world still needs more evidence particularly dollar proprietors against the philosophy of Ethiopia Pseudo-ism is a matter of shame ---.

PM Melles address, “So we asked the Eritrean government to withdraw from the territory that it had occupied by force and agree to resolve the problem peacefully including through international mediation, to delimitate and demarcate our boundaries.”

“--- the OAU High Level Delegation came up with its recommendation on November 7, 1998 , which was consistent again with these same principles:

1) that colonial boundaries are sacrosanct,

2) that border dispute cannot and must not be resolved by force,

3) If and when a country resorts to the use of force, a peaceful resolution of the problem must start undoing the result of that aggression and by ensuring a return to the status quo ante.

Once again we accepted that package”.

But in reality, it is not accepted by Ethiopia that time, which delayed the implementation of EEBC declaration till today that is the fallacy and disrespect to international law. What PM Melles said in front of African galaxy in OAU was a part of his Pseudo-ism that continued till today on the platforms of different international organizations.

Regarding Eritrea relation with neighborhood countries, PM Melles said, “---four of Eritrea ’s five neighbours have been assaulted. --- This is a pattern of behaviour. This is an unacceptable pattern of behaviour. This is a source of continued instability in the region”.

Here, one may take liberty to re-write [what PM Melles said during this occasion “--- this is a very dangerous pattern of behaviour---“] his words and analyzed the current political security situation in the Horn of Africa. This dangerous pattern of PM Melles behaviour forced his army senior officials to take political asylum in other countries on the one hand and intervening in internal affairs of neighbouring countries by sending TPLF militants to destroy Somalia, Kenya and Eritrea on the other hand proved this pattern of behaviour---Dangerous and of course Pseudo-ism.

PM Melles further said, “The OAU is the first line of defence of every country in Africa because it has a correct charter and principles that allow it to resolve peacefully. --- The powerless ( Africa country) may come to the OAU as the last line of defence to ask the OAU to defend their sovereignty. --- We are coming to you, the OAU is our preferred and first line of defence. We are not coming to you because the OAU is our last line of Defence”.

This is defence deterrent mechanism of Ethiopia . He never respects first line of defence of either OAU or Africa Union (AU). Moreover, he misuses in personal capacity of AU principle that ‘the AU will have the right to intervene in the affairs of member states, in case of genocide and war crimes’. He justifies TPLF militant activities in Horn of Africa in general and Somalia in particular under this section shamelessly.

As PM Melles told that he never believe in last line of defence and challenge the African brothers that he is not “relatively powerless” and wish to intervene through TPLF militants in any state. Not only that, Ethiopia tries to justifies TPLF activities and gives them a cover either under AU/ UN peace keepers or through dollar diplomacy.

· The General Secretariat of the OAU clarified the following questions handed over by President Mr. Issais Afwerki to Dr. Salim Ahmed Salim, Secretary General of the OAU during the latter’s visit to Asmara on 12 December 1998 . Following answers maintains its sanctity today (CAB/ERITREA/028.99/Addis Ababa, 28 January 1999 ).

Qus: 5 REGARDING COLONIAL TREATIES

5a) Has the OAU ascertained that both sides recognize and respect the colonial boundary between the two countries as defined by the established colonial treaties?

Ans: - This is a fundamental principle of the OAU which all OAU Member States accepted. This principle is therefore reflected in the proposals submitted by the OAU High Level Delegation to both parties. The OAU takes it that by accepting those proposals and eventually by signing the Framework Agreement which contains this principle, the two Parties would have committed themselves to abide by this principle.

5b) If this is the case, can this be affirmed through an agreement between the two Parties?

Ans: This principle is part and parcel of the Framework Agreement.

5c) What is the meaning of the clause “international law applicable to the colonial treaties”?

Ans:- International law are laws that governs the relations between states. In this particular case, international law would refer to the specific aspects of international law relevant to the colonial treaties.

Qus 5d) What is the precise interpretation of the OAU and UN Charters concerning colonial treaties?

Ans: As far as the OAU is concerned, it is to be noted that its charter refers to the principle of territorial integrity of its Member States. This position was further elaborated at the OAU summit in Cairo in July 1964, which provided in its operative paragraphs as follows:

SOLOMNLY REAFFIRMS the strict respect by all Member States of the Organization for the principles laid down in paragraph 3 of Article III of the charter of the Organization of African Unity;

Qus 6: SOLEMNLY DECLARES

a) What is the legal basis for demarcation?

d) What are the legal arrangements that will render the outcome binding?

- The signing of the Framework Agreement by the two parties.

b) What are its modalities, mechanism and time frame?

- The time-frame is 6 months to be extended as provided for in the Framework Agreement (On the recommendation of the Cartographic experts).

- The modalities and mechanism to be worked out by the follow-up committee in consultation with the experts.

Overall, all the historical documents including the answers given by OAU are still valid today and it was respected by EEBC as well. But the issues in international/African politics (Between Ethiopian and Eritrea ) in the contemporary decade are divided on two fronts. One, Eritrea and its people believes in peaceful settlement of Disputes and honour International Law and Second, the minority political ruler of Ethiopia trusts in Dollar Diplomacy and propagating Pseudo-Propaganda to excuse himself against the International Law and Justice. It is the time for the common people to decide either to choose peaceful co-existence for the State and society or to go alone in dark tunnel of Myth and Dollar frustration.

Conclusion

The history of Melles proved disrespect to international organizations sanctity and demystify through Pseudo-campaign against truth. Not only that, dollar diplomacy persuaded Ethiopia to enter into Somalia and not hesitating to go for the genocides because it supports the oil dollar proprietors in Somalia . The UN once again is used as puppet by these proprietors and Secretary General Kofi Annan is a mouth piece of them. It is the time to say point of order that will help to initiate the peace process in Somalia and usher implementing Algiers Peace Agreement 2002. It is the time to remember about reinforcement of UN peacekeepers during the Suez Canal Crisis and its nationalization and to repeat the same spirit now to implement EEBC to settle down the border issue between the two countries. There is a little option in front of international community either to choose dollar diplomacy and lit fire around themselves or to strengthen UN Charter and respect to international law. The second option will be a check on the propagators of Pseudo-Propagandist, broadcasting fallacy and disrespecting International Law in general and Africa (Horn of Africa) in particular. This is the time to strengthen unity and brotherhood in Horn of Africa that will drive peace, prosperity and development in the region and set back to dollar diplomacy.

Uphold the EEBC Implementation, Down with Communal Regionalism And Scramble in Horn of Africa

Dr. Suresh Kumar, EIT

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No. 57, 23 rd September 2006

The people of Eritrea cautiously understand communal prone statements of Meles Zenawi, Prime Minister of Tigrayan and Mr. Yamamoto Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs (former Ambassador). Everybody knows credentials of Meles about his public support. That's why he is surviving with the blessings of these neocolonial western forces and trying to spread communal regionalism across the border, which will help their master to revive ‘Divide and Rule' policy and mercantile in this region. The history of ‘Divide and Rule' had been started with ‘Scramble of Africa ' 1885 evidently led to Africans loss of control of their own affairs, overlooked the sentiments of thousands of tribal sects. Today, these colonial and neocolonial forces are talking about people's sentiment that shows their pseudo face value. Same forces worked on communal lines in Asia and divided into India and Pakistan in 1947. The interpretation of Mr. Yamamoto radio programme ‘English for Africa' in Voice of America (VOA) on 2 nd June 2006 serves dual purposes upsets domestic politics in Eritrea and misguides international politics by ignoring disciplinary action against culprit of EEBC. The similar approach is started through USA in Somalia and Sudan . USA is trying hard to cultivate the issue of Somalia through TPLF and Sudan on the name of Darfur . This is the plan for the scramble of Horn of Africa.

The Issue of Scramble in Eritrea

Meles intends to create an independent Tigrayan state and is selfishly playing under the hands of these forces when he cleverly propagates the colonial divide theory and escalating global mercantile, “Communities will be divided”, “Dialogue is Essential”, “Demarcation will not bring lasting peace,” etc. etc. Eritrea believes in practicing Self-Reliance Economy is under their hit list and they make an effort to influencing its society either through spreading internal politics of communal, religious, linguistic, ethnic disturbance inside the country or employ external politics to disturb their border through cross border infiltration and mischievous activities. These neocolonial forces engage in exercising Eritrea under external politics, disturbing its peace and development through border. Meles and Yamamoto attempted to break Eritrea 's secular culture, propagating the idea of division (‘Divided towns and Villages') in the nine tribal groups and exploring the possibilities of ethnic clash or war and abusing international law. It is the right time to remind them Eritrea Independence Struggle and Eritrean velour sacrifices to keep secular society intact.

UNO hoax approach failed to implement the decision of Eritrea Ethiopia Boundary Commission (EEBC), showed disrespect to Algiers Agreement and international order. These forces try to defend their failure through Mr. Yamamoto and he honestly persuaded it thorough VOA, said, “Demarcation only leads to another war. We don't want these divided towns and villages to be the source of another war or conflict ---”, and promoting hatred feelings among Eritreans.

Today, the neocolonial forces successfully implemented ‘Divide and Rule' for their unlimited market mercantile, which started from division of erstwhile USSR into 17 countries on ethnic lines on the one hand and advertising & selling their products on the name of globalization, open culture and liberalization on the other hand. These forces are exploiting natural precious items from Rwanda-Burundi, raw oil from Somalia ignoring internal strife, disturbed Sudan economy on North-South division, blemished Nigeria oil development into East-West division in Africa continent. They provoked Iraq-Kuwait war in 1990 and finally divided Iraqis into different communities today and fetching raw oil (Mainly US) of million of dollars for their own market. The Asia geo-strategic importance attracts neocolonial forces to spread communal regionalism that is seen as US military presence in Afghanistan , communal support to LTTE in Sri Lanka and plan to divide into pieces, Kashmir dispute between India and Pakistan etc. are in their own survival of trade & industry and political interest ( Asia disarray). These communal forces and their representatives in different parts of world will be thrashed only when there is serious attempt to promoting peace in Asia and Africa be implemented. Meles and Yamamoto, representative of communal regional forces will be kicked back when Eritreans raised the slogan of ‘uphold the EEBC, Secularism--- Do wn, Down Communal Regionalism' and showing their distinct features of Unity in Diversity.

The government of Eritrea rejected Yamamoto idea of ‘third party intervention' time and again, which is the same position of Government of India on Kashmir issue i.e. no third party interference. As a result, developed world ignored terrorism and allowed to destroy the peace of Kashmir and these forces like to strengthen these fanatic activities through Tigrayan Meles on the Eritrean border as well. Is Yamamoto worriedly remarked, “Because if We can't resolve the problem that gave rise to the war, then demarcation only leads to another war.” It is important to note these bold words, as it seems that they are the champions to resolve all the problems in Afro-Asia countries mentioned above. This is double-face diplomacy when Yamamoto as Deputy recorded US government commitment to EEBC on the eve of Valentine day ( 13 February 2006 ) on the one hand and issued a threat on 2 nd June 06, “We don't want these divided towns and villages to be the source of another war of conflict --” on the other hand.

Going back to history, we know that US Kagnew army based station located in Asmara during the Haile Selasie period. Today, the Middle East pressure ( Iraq crisis and current Iran nuclear issue) and US interest forced them to keep an eye on Red Sea base. The intention here is crystal clear to use Red Sea port being a geo-strategic importance in future for their deceitful purposes, supporting Meles fundamentalism and never implemented EEBC pious judgement. Once the EEBC implemented, the Eritrea will work for their sustainable development and maintain their geo-economic, geopolitical and geo-strategic importance in Africa , Middle East and Asia on the one side and Ethiopians will get their real representatives in Parliament and work for political development on the other side.

Evolution and Changing Nature of Eritrean Diaspora and Economic Development in Eritrea

Dr. Suresh Kumar

Part-1

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No. 55, 16 th September 2006

Dr. Suresh Kumar attended Independence Day celebrations, Martyrs Day, Egyptian Products Exhibition and Festival Eritrea 2006 and met a number of Eritreans living abroad. The following article is composed upon the research made be the writer and his observation.

Introduction

The word Diaspora literally speaking means the scattering of the Jews to countries outside of Palestine after the Babylonian captivity or the body of Jews living in such countries (collectively) or dispersion. Even then, this community maintains civilization identity having adaptations of the regional/district/province socio-cultural and avoids alien nature in the society. The Eritrean Diaspora community marks their presence in USA, Canada, Europe particularly UK, Italy, France, Switzerland, Germany, Australia, Lebanon and Netherlands and Africa particularly Kenya, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Uganda and Egypt and Arab countries particularly Saudi Arabia and Dubai in UAE particularly Saudi Arabia and Dubai in UAE. The nature of Eritrean Diaspora, comparatively, is emerging in the changing international socio-political environment having the elements of pre-independent and post-independent Eritrea . The changing nature of Eritrean Diaspora in general and Eritrea in particularly, needs to be re-analyzed on three fronts like:

1. the socio-economic dimension which leads to the identity of Eritrean community,

2. the political awakening and the struggle of its identity, and

3. the tradition of Eritrean culture emerged from the debate.

The Eritrean community mainly working class came to different parts of world mentioned above initially as a slave. The next phase of Eritrean working class was placed under contract to work usually for seven to ten years, known as indentured labor. The Eritrean merchant traders involved in cloth and commodities (Like Injara seed and flour, pulses, leather and other food items) followed indentured labors and setup retail business mainly in Europe, USA and other parts of world. Gradually, this trading community (particularly Tigrinya and Muslim) became a permanent factor in the socio-economic life among Eritrean during colonialism. The pre-independent phase of indenture system developed their culture to survive, which is neither purely Eritrean nor European or American i.e. a mixture to preserve cultural identity within the changing regional adaptations.

In fact, the Eritrean Diaspora leaves much scope for economic, social, cultural, family and political transnational networks because it is a global one, spread over all continents and comprising approximate 0.5 million people. The research article is divided into four sections. First , the history of Eritrean migration to and emigration from different parts of world will be elaborated. Secondly , the importance of the skilled-labor and trading communities for the Africans identity will be analyzed, followed by an analysis of their transnational links and the importance of places. Thirdly , the discussion on Eritrean Diaspora is an attempt to analyze various cross-cultural currents that Eritrean surpassed successfully. More over, whether it is society, political economy or culture everything was guided and often mercilessly bended to favor colonial needs. The driving force in the emergence of this Diaspora has been civilization identification and cultural linkage. Finally , the changing nature of Diaspora will be elaborated incorporating their political and socio-economic contributions.

T here might still remain questions about whether there is an Eritrean Diaspora. It is with respect to the Jewish people that the word 'Diaspora' was first employed, as it suggests the idea of dispersal and fragmentation and in much of the literature there is a presumed relationship between the diasporic community and the land which they left and to which the possibility of return always subsists, or what we are apt to term 'motherland' or 'home'. In the last fifteen years, as patterns of migration continue to disperse growing numbers of people across the world, the idea of the Diaspora has become increasingly common in the social sciences. Utilized initially as a predominantly ‘neutral' term to describe the dispersal of people from a homeland, it was largely drawn from the historical precedent of Jewish communities, a varied and complex phenomenon, which changed in character through time and space. That's why Europe , America , Canada and other parts of world recognized Eritrean as an integral part of their community.

Historical Development

In the nineteenth century, a large number of Eritrean were taken, under conditions of savage exploitation, to various Italian and British colonies as indentured labor to work on land cleaning, plantations, railway network, domestic workers (House maid) and other unskilled hard labour owe their presence in different countries to this particular circumstance. The migration of indentured workers continued until Second World War and Eritrean migrants also joined them. These early migrants have usually been envisaged as two distinct groups as ‘indentured workers' on the one hand and ‘merchants' on the other hand. Gradually, many indentured workers went into industrial sector, but also became white-collar workers and small-scale traders.

The ‘merchant' part of the population also included many small-scale traders who lived a precarious existence, as well as a host of Eritrean who had come over to fill menial positions in various Eritrean businesses and formed community. ‘Community' had to be invoked for political ends, as well as for structures of self-help, such as establishing schools (particularly in Europe and different cities of USA , etc.) where state provision was woefully inadequate. Because of these factors, from early on, there was a development of some sense of ‘Eritrean-ness', which helped during the independence struggle in Eritrea . However, important aspects of this ‘Eritrean-ness' took root through a dialogue with events in Eritrea .

Indeed, one of his most insistent criticisms against the use of the term for Eritrean foreigner, (and other international Eritrean populations) is their “problematic” relationship with “home”, i.e. that they do not really “know” Eritrea . One visualizes that many Eritrean, searching for upward mobility, define them as “modern”, and see much of Eritrea as the antithesis of this, having the reports and experience on the name of under development, lack of industrialization, infrastructure, health facilities and other tension. In addition to it, those who have visited “home” through “roots tourism” (watching Massawa Sea Port, Keren and Nakfa mountainous adventure, historical excavations, mountaineering, rock climbing etc) and returned with experience of positive responses, were, seeing Eritrea through rose-tinted Oriental's glasses, building romantic visions of peaceful village life as a spiritual haven, which does not conform to the real rural Eritrea today. What is objectionable is the attempt in the writings by such migrants to impose on the ‘first generation' of indentured immigrants the sentiments and modes of connecting to the homeland characteristic of the recent generations of Sub-continental migrants'. One may suggests that for early indentured laborers there was a “…relative lack of any clear ‘diasporic commitment' or identification with the ‘motherland'…” and most of them did not want to ‘go home'. To “forge and maintain links with one's place of origin was not only difficult” it was also not desirable.

The history of Eritrea has been a history of violent and bitter struggle for freedom. Eritrea being part of Red Sea and its connectivity through land to Egypt , Ethiopia , Sudan and other was an attraction of aggression from neighbouring countries and colonialist. Eritrean armed struggle started in 1940 to strengthen political movements and Eritrean Diaspora played its political and economic role successfully and attained independence.

The Post Independent Development and Eritrean Diaspora

The Post independent Eritrea shows the Government participation by introducing different schemes for diasporic communities. More over, one unequivocally speaks of an Eritrean Diaspora, it is because social forces have emerged to cement the widely disparate elements from the Eritrea into and Eritrean' community. One can point, for example, to Eritrean culture and food. The popular Eritrean traditional music and songs provides a considerable element of commonalty to Eritrean communities, even among those where one language is not spoken or little known. The Ministry of Tourism shows (Table-1) that Eritrea Diaspora resides in different parts of world and likes to re-connect to motherland and fetching new avenues for their investment and socio-economic involvement.

Table-1 Overseas Eritreans By Place of Residence 2005

Place of

Residence

First

Second

Third

Fourth

Total

World

13,643

14,071

21,305

11,365

60,384

Africa 9,171 9,036 7,887 7,431 33,425

Ethiopia

0

1

8

6

15

Sudan

9,002

8,890

7,645

7,301

32,838

Other Africa

169

145

234

124

672

America 853 1,346 1,706 741 4,646

USA

621

1,133

1,398

595

3,747

Canada

232

213

307

146

898

Other America

0

0

1

-

1

Asia 19 16 13 11 59

Asia

19

16

13

11

59

Europe 1,840 1,917 6,615 1,318 11,690

Italy

294

310

1,490

218

2,312

Germany

589

610

1,651

458

3,308

England

277

241

1,057

210

1,785

Scandinavia

459

544

1,312

277

2,592

Other Europe

221

212

1,105

155

1,693

Middle East 1,689 1,729 5,052 1,815 10,285

Saudi

1,347

1,448

4,471

1,544

8,810

Yemen

41

44

76

33

194

M. East

301

237

505

238

1,281

Oceania 71 27 32 49 179

Australia

71

27

32

49

179

Source: Statistical Report 2005, Ministry of Tourism, March 2006.

Part-II

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No. 56, 20 September 2006

Today, the government appreciated the Eritreans Diaspora community contribution to support families of fallen heroes and collected 1.4 million Nakfa to this Martyr's Day (June 2006). This amount is distributed to 271 martyr's families in Adi Tekelezan, Elabered, Hegaz, Hahale and Geleb sub-zone of Anseba region. This diasporic community plays its important role through their involvement in the SAWA national services and joined voluntarily in the different academic institutions like Asmara University, Eritrea Institute of Technology, Medical Sciences and Information Technology. The Eritrean diasporic community belonging to Adi Yakine, Adi-Shalemum and Adi Haisn administrative areas in Emni HAili sub-zone renovated 7KM long road, which connected transport facility of 10 villages in the sub-zone. The diasporic community supported the undertaking through financial backing ( 29 July 2006 ).

Today, the “dollar" Diaspora tends to dominate because of the influence of its members in their adopted lands and their access to capital for investment. These migrants are ambitious people, driven by a need to succeed, but their success often carries a trace of guilt for having left their motherland. The overseas Eritrean community can be divided broadly into two categories. The older or real Diaspora, that is, constitutes the larger category second or even third generation descendants of Eritrean settled in different parts of globe. The second category comprises mainly first-generation migrants, who live in the developed economies and still maintain close connections with their homeland. Though Eritrean looks up to overseas Eritrean for foreign investment, which cannot be the main reason for engaging the diasporic community. The Diaspora gives Eritrean a wide reach in the international arena, through engagement with a wide range of countries. Eritrea has a natural link with people of Eritrean origin and their strong desire to remain connected with their Eritrean heritage. This is the reason that all the Eritrea foreign nationals are contributing 2% of their salary to their respective embassies to strengthen this idea of Eritrean Diaspora and the Eritrean government equally appreciated it and approved the idea of dual citizenship. The Eritrean Diaspora covers different areas such as culture, language, literature, entertainment, hospitality and tourism, knowledge-based industries, health care and education.

There is a view that unlike the Chinese Diaspora, the Eritrean Diaspora does not invest in Eritrea . Overseas Eritrean is mainly professionals and hence their investment has been in portfolio management. However, the presence of a large overseas Eritrean community will open up new markets for Eritrean goods. Eritrean communities in different African countries have provided the means to access the African market. The government should persuade diasporic communities to attract foreign investments. Investment is a decision dependent on the kind of facilities available, rather than on sentiment. The number of Eritrean Diaspora visit is increasing and appreciated by them particularly development of infrastructure, road, agriculture, industries and gold mining.

Role of Diasporic Community in SAWA

The first Eritrean Youth Festival was held in SAWA from 23 rd to 28 th July 2004. Around 40,000 youth from inside the country and abroad attended the festival and out of that 1200 Eritreans from diaspora has been registered in the SAWA festival. The SAWA 2006 celebrations of Youth festival came to an end on 22 July 06. President Isais Afwerki distributed the SAWA award to youths from the Diaspora community who has completed 12 th grade and demonstrated excellence in their academic pursuit. The total 49 Eritrean diasporic students from Sweden , Norway , USA and the Netherlands were awarded the SAWA prize along with a medal.

Eritrean residing in Sweden and members of “Friends of SAWA” donated 749 balls for soccer, basket and volley games and other sports equipments to the Defense Force Training Center . This is the occasion for Diaspora Eritrean youths to get acquainted with their homeland. Along with it, National Union of Eritrean Youth and Students (NUEYS) organized an extensive panel discussion on “Handling of Youths in Diaspora”. This festival provides a forum for a common ground for the Diaspora community, rejuvenating the working values. Around 50,000 people comprising from members of the 19 th and 20 th National Service Program and youths from inside the country and abroad took part in festival. All diasporic community celebrated the major development sites in the country. President Isais advised Eritrean youths residing abroad to make good use of the educational and technological opportunities at their disposal and make efforts to look for ways and means by which ‘Information Technology' could serve the needs of their homelands.

The Foreign Branches and International Relations (FBIR) office of NUEYS works to reach with Eritrea youth diaspora through its foreign branches in Africa , Middle East , Europe , USA , India and Australia . “FBIR has been working to encourage the contribution and activities of these youth away from home, and to strengthen their relations with their compatriots back home by exchanging experiences. FBIR has also been working to assist and counsel the youth with their problems, and to improve parents-youth relations. It conducts the following activities for the Eritrean youth in the Diaspora:

•  Conferences, seminars and meetings on national and youth-related issues;

•  Know Your Country program;

•  Volunteer service and Internship;

•  Cultural activities

•  Organizing summer vacation (Zura N' Hagerka) programs” (NUEYS, Information and Public Relations Department, 2006: 22-23).

It is important to mention here about Zura N' Hagerka tour program for the Diaspora youth, which is conducted once or twice in a year. Starting from 2000 up to 2005, a total of 647 Eritreans from different foreign countries have participated in the program and visited historical places having cultural significance, reconstruction and rebuilding activities of Warsau Ykealo program.

Role of Contemporary Diasporic Community

The first Eritrean Sports festival in Italy was enthusiastically celebrated on the 22 nd and 23 rd July in the Rome . Six Eritrean football teams from 6 Italian cities participated in this festival. The ERICOM team standing first, Eritrean community in Forlin and Bologna took the second and third prize respectively. Moreover, the members of the National Union of Eritrean Women in Italy remembered the bravery and contribution of the Eritrean Women (as part of Diasporic Community) in registering the independence of Eritrea , vowed to enhance their efforts for the development and defense of their country.

More than 1500 Eritreans diasporic community celebrated Independence Day on 3 rd and 4 th June 06 and organized cultural programmes related to different ethnic groups. The diasporic community observed the encouraging results of national reconstruction and development programmes and appreciated continuous efforts to achieve food security programmes.

This diasporic community in London celebrated the Independence Celebration under the banner of “Freedom Fruit of Our Steadfastness, Prosperity Outcome of Our Work” on July 2, 2006 . An art exhibition, Hidri and Sinit cultural troupes played stage musical performance.

Festival Eritrea 2006 concluded in the West Coast, USA and Sweden . Mr. Salih Meki, Minister of Health inaugurated this festival in Seattle in West Coast shared the different development approach in the Health Sector particularly with the Eritrean Diaspora and appreciated their positive concern about Eritrea. The cultural troupe from Eritrea was the major attraction during this festival. Along with it, Eritrean sports, bazaar, fashion show and issues discussed during seminars were the other major events. Eritrean Diaspora came from different cities like Vancouver , California , Oakland , Portland , Canada and other to involve in this festival. Similarly, Festival Eritrea 2006, Stockholm in Sweden was attended by Mrs. Fowzia Hashim, Minister of Justice that started from August 3-6, 06. It organized Eritrean cultural shows, exhibit different products form Eritrea and discuss the current national and international issues in the seminars. Similarly over 800 Eritrean diaspora community celebrated Eritrea Festival from September 1 to 4, 2006 .

In the East Canada Mr. Al-Amin Mohammed Seid, Secretary, Peoples Front Democracy and Justice (PFDJ) shared his concern on the issueslike Food Security, developmental planning and infrastructure and reinforced his delebration on national unity. Along with it, different sports and cultural activities, Eritrean food bazaar and fashion show and seminar attracted the diasporic community.

Role of Government and Diaspora

Eritreans in diaspora are very dedicated people and contributing a lot to this country. The government ensures that they are considered a very important resource for the country. Putting these facts and others in consideration the government of Eritrea decided to establish a commission called “ Commission for Eritrean Residing Abroad ” and it is directly administered under the Presidential office. The commission is consisted of three main departments and two supporting branches:

•  Department of Social and Cultural affairs.

•  Department of Economic Affairs, and

•  Department of Information and Research.

•  Public Relation Branch

•  Administration and Finance Branch

Mr. Said Abdelhay , Acting Commissioner of Commission of Eritreans Residing Abroad and former Director General of Social and Cultural Affairs explains the functioning of its office highlighted the major task during his interview and said,

•  “Strengthening of Eritrean identity and unity.

•  Enabling Eritrean in diaspora to have strong attachment with their homeland and their people.

•  To enable Eritrean professionals and specialists in different fields to increase their contribution to their homeland.

•  Encouraging and helping Eritrean in diaspora to invest their money in homeland.

•  Helping and advocating for Eritreans in diaspora to build strong communities where they live, and ensuring that their dignity and rights are respected.

•  Ensuring that they are getting good service from different government institutions when they visit their home”.

This commission is working now or concentrating on facilitating diaspora activities in Eritrea and this is mostly done by the Public Relation Branch Office (PRO). Mr. Said Abdelhay rightly emphasized by saying, “The PRO is doing his best to solve the problems that faces those came from diaspora with the governmental offices and solved their simple problems with immigration office, date of birth registration, municipal office and problems related to land and business. This office is solving their day to day problems like gasoline (Petrol and Diesel) for their vehicles and cooking gas”. Eritrean nationals and diasporic community (some 800) who have been living in Lebanon are vacating the country with the help of Eritrean government because of Israel army attack on Lebanon . In general, the government is trying to encourage Eritreans in diaspora through distributing lands for building houses. The Department of Economic Affairs disseminates information through internet about opportunities of investment in Eritrea .

Along with it, Eritrea Festival 2006 at EXPO started form July 28 to August 6, 06 in Asmara and was inaugurated by President Issais Awferki. This festival involves all the different ethnic groups through their zonal village shows, cultural dances, folk tales, traditional sports, painting, sculpture & handicraft and food corners. It was attended by large number of Eritrea Diaspora and valued the government development approach in agriculture, industry, commerce, science and technology and infrastructure sector. The diaspora community cherished the government efforts in the gold mining and other precious metals.

Part-III

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No. 57, 23 September 2006

The Future of Eritrean in the Diaspora

Although people of Eritrean origin have been present in different parts of world since scramble of Africa , they are asserting their links to Eritrea and claiming membership of an Eritrean diasporic community. Scholars have questioned the legitimacy of this ‘diasporic identity' since they do not conform to any authentic criteria of Diaspora. Against this, it could be argued that searching for diasporic authenticity in narratives of the past is a red herring that blinds us to the politics of the present.

Politically , Eritrean government however tempting to protect the interests of diasporic Eritrean who are foreign nationals, the brute fact remains that Eritrea can do little more than indicate its displeasure with the allegedly offending party. It is for Eritrean in the Diaspora to forge links between themselves, to enter into coalitions with other minorities and marginalized people, and more significantly, to formulate for themselves a moral, sensitive, and democratic politics. There is the perception that Eritrean is not merely apprehensive of Whites, but likely to observe a colour-like discrimination against them almost everywhere where Eritrean and Whites form part of the population. One could go so far as to say that Eritrean have, in some places, shut Whites out of their moral vision, and invested them with an evil that properly belongs to political and social structures. If the global economy is ‘non-racial' then racial difference has been replaced by cultural difference, which is understood on almost the same terms as biological ideas of race. Difference is emphasized at the expense of any sense of universality, which in turn has encouraged blaming the ‘culture' of different groups for varying degrees of economic success or failure, inclusion or exclusion. Zizek, an expert of political sociology suggests that multiculturalism involves both a renunciation of other possibilities, and an acceptance of the status quo, which brings not only an ideological closure, but a naturalization of global capitalism. Cultural diversity thus becomes a part of a liberal discourse that promotes the construction of cultural difference under the guise of tolerance, where exclusion and marginalization is no longer the effect of racism, but of cultural itself. In this climate, one can see the proliferation of narratives of ‘difference', each embedded in their own idea of ‘authenticity'.

Economically , though Eritrean lived under conditions of appalling poverty in many places of the world where they were first taken as indentured labor, a number of remarkable transformations were effected over two or three generations. Through sheer perseverance, labor, and thrift, and most significantly by a calculated withdrawal into their culture, in which they found forces of sustenance, diasporic Eritrean successfully labored to give their children and grandchildren better economic futures, and they in time made their presence in the trade and commerce of their new homelands. This was just as true about Eritrea Diaspora in Kenya , South Africa , Zimbabwe , Egypt and Uganda .

Culturally, a few “Eritrean descent" artists have, been producing interesting projects, work which blurs boundaries between cultures and genres whose works have dealt with a vast range of issues and concerns. A number of musicians and visual artists have been active who have produced work which could be said to engage with the countries pluralism. By combining Eritrean music and instruments with western forms of expression, for instances an ideal example of a hybrid culture.

Challenges and Suggestion

The future of Eritrean in the Diaspora revolves upon two modalities of thought and action. First, diasporic Eritrean must, without necessarily offering their allegiance to the idea of the nation-state, attempt a coalition-style politics with other communities and groups of those who are not only marginalized, peripheral, and disenfranchised, but whose knowledge systems have, through the processes of colonialism and management, and with the aid of Enlightenment notions of science, rationality and progress, been rendered powerless and superfluous.

Secondly, diasporic Eritrean cannot reasonably look to the Eritrea government for succor and assistance, and whatever the strength of the emotional and cultural ties between them and the 'motherland', their center of being lays elsewhere. That question, 'what can Eritrea do for people of Eritrean ancestry abroad', begs to be effaced. However much comfort there may be in thinking of identity as given, bound within purportedly natural categories, or in supposing that identity can always be recovered and revived, there is a greater courage, which diasporic Eritrean have seldom displayed, in reconstituting identity along lines of political and cultural choices, and in defiance of received categories of knowledge. Perhaps, in this endeavor, placed, as many diasporic Eritreans are in-between space, they may yet be in the position of trying to give society a new, at least slightly more human face.

Thirdly , Eritreans rediscovery of its Diaspora is a process that requires the formulation of a plan of action that involves all groups of overseas Eritrean. President Afwerki may set up of an advisory council on diasporic affairs, which could be a forum in Eritrea with representatives of the government, public figures and representatives of overseas Eritreans, who could meet regularly to explore issues of common concern. It would work to sensitize opinion among the overseas community on delicate political and cultural issues within legitimate bounds.

Fourth , Eritrean Diaspora is facing bureaucratic hurdles. They spoke of the insecurity of their investments and assets in Eritrea . But the government different schemes of economic incentives to this community may lead to security and confidence at home.

Fifth , Identities shift and evolve, for example, from USA Eritrean to Eritrean USA . This community needs to keep pace with that change in an increasingly globalize world or face the risk of being cocooned out of reality. While many may be quick to point to the evils of increasing Westernization, it is an inescapable part of this community's evolution and should be treated as such. The Eritrean community needs to be mindful of the increasing transformation of its cultural identity to one that seems to be an amalgam of Western and African, let alone a different brand of Eritrean .

Finally , Graduate students and senior academics came together in trying to think how best Eritrea and other world can speak directly to each other, bypassing the mediation of Europe and America . There are approximate 0.1million Eritrean in external world according to data available with the Commission for Eritrean Residing Abroad of the ministry . The Eritrean government may launch the official portal on the Eritrean Diaspora as part of its efforts to reach out to the vast number of overseas Eritrean and tap their potential to contribute to the country's growth. Europe, USA, Canada, Australia, Asia and Africa is significant as it has good number persons of Eritrean origin, or Eritrean who had migrated and settled in other countries, than non-resident Eritreans, or those who live abroad but are still Eritrean passport holders. Most of these people of Eritrean origin are old timers, and each family has a different story to tell, depending on the period of time they have been away from Eritrea .

TPLF : ( Bay of Pigs ) Threat to Peace and Stability in Horn of Africa

Dr. Suresh Kumar

Eritrea Profile, Vol.13, No.52, 6 September, 2006

It is the time to remind the super powers that cold war is dead. The global world needs liberal economy favoring democratic governments around the world. The post 1990 Africa shifted more towards elected democratic government and adopted limited liberal market economy. Horn of Africa is one of the regions following this globalization in their own terms.

Does global economy prefer insurgency to promote their trade relations? If not, why leader of global world and its intelligentsia Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) fail to appreciate the peace processes and economic development in Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan and Somalia. It seems that US being a super power is issuing summons and dictates to respect its determination whatever the way it is. It reminded the old Bay of Pigs story of cold war period.

The unsuccessful attempt to overthrow the government of the Cuban premier Fidel Castro by United States forces known as Bay of Pigs in 1961. On April 17, 1961 about 1500 exiles, armed with U.S. weapons, landed at the Bahía de Cochinos ( Bay of Pigs ) on the south coast of Cuba . Even before that, however, the CIA had been training antirevolutionary Cuban exiles for a possible invasion of the island. The operation was designed as a means of overthrowing the Castro regime without revealing U.S. involvement in the operation. Today, TPLF forces have entirely crossed into Somalia to overthrow the government like Bay of Pigs . The US administration has already set up camps in Djibouti and western Ethiopia on the name of combating terrorism in the Horn of Africa region. US willfully expand its army camps in Sudan , Somalia and Eritrea under the banner of Anti-Terrorism or Anti-Muslim Terrorism and supporting militancy of TPLF. TPLF with the support of US army will interfere to de-stabilize the governance in the Horn region, which will help them to repeat Bay of Pigs in the Horn region and to strengthen its neo-colonial mercantile expansion in the globe.

US Assistant Secretary of State for Africa (On 30 th June 2006 ) blamed Eritrea , along with Yemen and Saudi Arabia for providing funds and/or arms to the Islamic courts in Somalia , which is rejected by these states. Here, the communal agenda is one of the US strategies and on the name of Sharia law it is started playing in United Somalia to create dispute between different communities. Here, this communal card is used through TPLF in the northern Somalia establishing military base (as communal card experimented in different parts of world) under US tactics. The on going Somalia peace and unity process is a threat to communal propagandist. Today, Soamlian understood Bay of Pigs political communalism and its move to de-stabilizing the process of formation of central government. The ‘Anti-terrorist' activities led by TPLF militant under the cover of CIA have become an open secret and mockery to international law. That's why, the militant anti-terrorist activity even does not mind to de-stabilize and overthrow the popular democratic governments in the Horn.

The US is funding a coalition of Somali warlords who earlier this year battled Islamic groups in Mogadishu , says the Somali President Abdullahi Yusuf. According to him, “The funding is fuelling the civil war in the country”. According to BBC, “US officials refused to comment directly. Reports that the US was operating in Somalia have been circulating for some time, but according to the BBC, this is the first time someone so senior has commented on them (New African, June 2006, No.452, p.25).

TPLF is getting militarily and financial assistance through CIA based in Djibouti and Eastern Ethiopia . A report accusing 14 Europeans states of colluding with the CIA on secret flights transferring terror suspects is under debate in Europe 's Human Rights body. European Union justice Commissioner Franco Frattini, invited to contribute for thorough national inquiries to the Council of Europe debate. The secret flights network may cover this region and assisting CIA and TPLF.

Peace Process in Horn of Africa

The civil war and exacerbating instability and chaos in Somalia through neighbouring countries was raised during the IGAD meeting in Nairobi in June 2006. The Somalia delegation informed the member-states that the deliberate smear campaign to strengthen interest strife is a part of external politics of countries and IGAD and African Union should facilitate a encouraging environment for the United Somalia. The process of united Somalia will play a constructive role in stabilizing the Horn of Africa region.

Prior to it, the Sudanese vice president, Ali Osman Taha , and Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA), the main southern rebel group's leader, John Garang signed a Peace Agreement in Kenya on January 10, 2005 that called for an end to one of the longest-running conflict in Sudan . The agreement is a positive development for peace in Sudan and will persuade the other groups of western Darfur region, which is not covered under the agreement, to work further for the peace processes. Peace Accord initiates six-year transition period calls for assimilation of fighting forces, sharing of oil wealth and dividing governance seats between north and south. Now, the centre and provincial governments of functional democracy will be initiated by providing some autonomy to build and strengthen their governance.

Eritrea President Isais Afwerki assured the SPLA delegation headed by Mr. Pagan Aman, Secretary General of the movement and Dr. Mansur Khalid, advisor to the President of the Republic of Sudan that Eritrea would continue its support until the Sudanese problem has found a lasting political solution on the eve of 15 th Independence Day. As a result, the peace agreement signed on 19 th June 2006 in Eritrea . Dr. Mustafs Osman Ismail, President Advisor and Mr.Mussa Mohsmmed Aahmaed, Chairman of the East Sudan Front signed the agreement. The Agreement on ‘ Declaration of Principles on Resolving the East Sudan Conflict ' and Agreement on Creating Climate Conducive to Peace to the problem of East Sudan are having salient features such as:

1. Both the sides agreed to stop military hostilities and attacks.

2. Both agreed to refrain from attacks against peaceful persons and their property, destructive measures against social and economic institutions.

3. Both agreed to initiate mutual media campaign.

4. A tripartite committee set up consisting representatives of the Sudanese government, the East Sudan Front and the Government of Eritrea to monitor the agreement reached on crating a climate conducive to peace.

5. No state of emergency in East Sudan in future is promised. All the prisoners of war and political prisoners will be released.

6. It assures the implementation of previously concluded agreements to foster mutual confidence.

This agreement in Eritrea will reinforce the ongoing peace Accord process in Sudan between North and South. This step promotes peace, unity and stability in the North and South and East Sudan regions.The leaders of Horn of Africa commended the constructive role of Eritrea to promote peace ands prosperity in North-east Sudan . President Isais Awerki visited Sudan and strengthens their present and future relations enhancing the strategic bilateral relations, regional issues and peace process in Sudan .

The peace process in Eritrea needs an implementation of EEBC judgement. Once the EEBC implemented, the Eritrea will work for their sustainable development and Ethiopia will get their real representatives in Parliament and stable government.

The people of Ethiopia strongly believes in democratic system and did not appreciate TPLF role and its activities on the border. The Ethiopian people boycotted TPLF activities and it is one of the reasons for TPLF to shift their army base to Somalia . An Ethiopian feels that this ethnic division through TPLF will lead to fragmentation and rise of sub-national politics in the country, which will leave behind the economic development agenda of the country on the one side and build a continuous tension with the peaceful neighbourers like Sudan , Eritrea , Kenya and Somalia on the other side. The migration from the country and taking asylum shows their real political and democratic protest against the government.

Similarly, Kenyan government is facing the more or less the same ethnic tensions created by Bay of Pigs particularly in the northern parts of Kenya .

US Interests in Horn of Africa

It is noted here that Horn of Africa is having a geo-strategic importance, which is the entry gate to Middle East region. US wants to expand its influence through UN to keep instability in the Iraq politically and to threaten Iran continuously. Going back to history, Iraq-Iran ten years war and US support to Iraq is remembered to all and now the terror of Bin Laden is itself the cold war product of US. Here the TPLF acts as Bay of Pigs for their own survival and implementing US interests.

US failed to find Bin Laden in Afghanistan , mass destruction weapons in Iraq and any sign of nuclear weapon in Iran . But US successfully capture the Iraq oil resources; searching mineral and oil resources in Afghanistan and more or less the same ambitions are targeted for Iran . Horn of Africa is a good base for US army to destabilize Iran on the one hand and to explore its un-ended wish for oil and energy resources on the other hand. The Horn may act as their base once the unstable governments in different states will be set up under its control through Bay of Pigs .

Conclusion

There is a need to strengthen people to people contact in the horn of Africa and reinforce the ongoing peace process and government stability in different countries in Horn. There is need to build Ethiopia-Sudan-Eritrea-Kenya-Somalia relations for the peaceful co-existence that will surely strengthen IGAD and Horn of Africa for political, economic and social unity and development.

Cubans destroyed the Bay of Pigs in Cuba . Now, it is the time for Ethiopian, Eritrean, Sudanese, Somalian and Kenyan to forget North-South, East-West communal, linguistics, religious divisions and stand united. The unity in diversity will help them to throw TPLF ( Bay of Pigs ) in the deep Sea once again. It is the right time to share each other problems (Like Eritrea played during East Sudan Agreement) and initiate a dialogue to strengthen their development activities through mutual relations. Eritrea challenges neo-colonial economic expansion through its self- Reliance development agenda. Today, Horn of Africa should adopt this concept and build infrastructure, education, employment, health, scientific agriculture, industrialization, mutual trade relations through road, etc. will usher a sustainable development.

An Exhibition From Buya to Nakfa- Self-Explanatory Phases of Archeological Evidence

Haddas Ertra, Vol. 15, No.305, August 22, 2006

(Daily Newspaper in Tigringna language)

This Interview Translated From Tigrinya Language to English.

The photographic exhibition is arranged chronologically from the earliest site of Buya to the most recent site of Nakfa. There many traces of artistic works in caves like painting and curved from stone, which are clear examples of ancient civilizations in Eritrea . Likewise, these traces show the different stages of the civilization of man and it becomes more interesting because we find these traces of ancient man on the land of Eritrea . The ancient part of Adulis port and Kohato town show that they were part of ancient civilizations. Kohato is one of the biggest ancient historical sites in Africa and it is believed that this civilization had strong ties of trade and agriculture in this region. The painting work in Emba Chelai , the pillars in Kohato, the decorated grave-yard of the D erbush in Massawa and other are traces of ancient civilizations. Traces of one million year old man and other mammals have been found in Denkalia represent themselves the part of this ancient civilization. The Bunkers and other under ground buildings, which were built during the liberation struggle, are examples of some of the most wonderful traces of Eritrea 's modern history.

Dr. Suresh Kumar, Department of Political Science, EIT explains that by going one million year back, we find the traces of human civilization in Buya (located in Denakil Depression). This place ( Buya ) needs more scientific study, research and excavations, which helps us to understand the great civilization of ancient man belonging to that period. Moreover, there are number of traditional sites found in historical monasteries, where one find ancient human skeletons reserve in a good conditions. This is a lesson for us and an issue of scientific methodology that how those people were able to keep their dead for such a long time (With the help of Science and Technology of that period) through the process called “Mummies” that shows the type of scientific civilizations those people had.

More over, Dr. Suresh reiterated his explanation about the well-decorated caves, which shows the rich art and culture of that civilization and people. The caves are self-explanatory historical sites for the modern generation.

How ever, everybody should work to maintain this historical sites and properties safe and secure. Dr. Suresh continued his appeal to everybody who comes across such ancient property in any area of Eritrea to first keep them safe and then informed the responsible authorities immediately.

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The Growth of Food Industry under Self Reliance Movement in Eritrea
Dr. Suresh Kumar and Mr. D.V. Madhusudan Rao, TVET
Eritre Profile, Vol. 13 No. 44, August 9, 2006

Eritrea endeavor towards development is producing good demand today for infrastructure, appropriate technologies and capacity building for assisting local value addition to its abundant natural resources, augmenting local production to meet the demands of the Eritreans and producing employment through development of small and medium food industry. The industrialization in Eritrea deals with 1) Production, processing and preservation of meat, fish, fruit, vegetables, oils and fats, 2) Manufacture of dairy products, 3) Manufacturing of Grain Mill Products, Starches and Starch products and prepared animal feeds, 4) Manufacture of other food products, 5) Manufacture of Beverages, 6) Manufacture of Tobacco products, 7) Manufacture of Spinning, weaving and other textile, 8) Manufacture of paints, varnishes and similar coatings, printing ink materials, 9) Manufacture of general purpose machinery, 10) Manufacture of medical appliances and instruments, and 11) Manufacture of furniture etc., and out of which 50% relates to food industry. The relative growth of both Output and Input of the food industry (sector) has shown a substantial increase from 2003 to 2004 as mentioned in Table-1.

Table-1

Value in 000' Nakfa

ISIC

Industrial

Group

2003

2004

Gross Output

Gross Input

Gross Output

Gross Input

Gross Output

Gross Input

1511-1549

Food

461,570

550,323

532,607

597,178

1552-1554

Beverage and Alcoholic Drinks

591,839

226,545

877,549

450,225

Source: Census of Manufacturing Establishments 2004, Statistical Report 6, Nov.2005, Ministry of Trade and Industry.

“Food & Beverage and alcoholic drinks contributed the highest proportion to the total Gross Input in both years. However, the value of Output gave the opposite result as shown in Table-1 above. In this case the proportion of Food and Beverage in the total Gross input for the year 2004 is 32% and 25% respectively” (Statistical Report 6:25). It should be noted that the subsidies given by the Government to the flour mills is not included in the value of Output of Food Industry.

Food industry covers all the essential, non-essential items and beverages. The essential items cover everyday consumption goods and non-essential items include occasionally consumption and beverages. The daily based items incorporate bread, butter, milk, cream, biscuit, mineral water, macaroni, spaghetti, pasta, salt, edible oil, dairy flour and animal & poultry feed. The non-essential items deals with pastry, candies, cakes, fish and shrimps, cheese & mortedela, milk products, canned food, OMK, tea, lolly ice and pasterniz. The beverage relates to alcoholic drinks, liquor, beer, wine, soft drinks, juices and mineral water.

Today, the Government of Eritrea is doing its level best at avoiding food aid expectancy and ensuring food security at individual and national level. Ministry of Trade and Industry (2004) expresses that there are total 276 medium and large scale manufacturing establishments and out of that 88 relates to Food and Beverage industries that comes to 31.36% of total industrialization. Graph-1 shows that Maekel region is having maximum numbers of industries and 3022 workers are employed in it.

Graph-1

Source : Ministry of Trade and Industry, 2004 .

Similarly, 665 in Debub, 68 in Anseba and 124 workers in NRS are involved in the food industries of these zobas. Along with it, Technical and Vocational Education Training (TVET) Department graduate student studies different programs (including food & beverage industries) and 657 passed their graduation in the year 2006. The technical skill and training is given with the consultation of local industries, to build employment opportunities in their respective fields.

Eritrea divides into six zobas such as Anseba, Debub, South Red Sea , Gash Barka, Maekel and Northern Red Sea . Asmara being a capital city of Eritrea enshrines maximum food industries in its township. Along with it, different zobas are having essential, non-essential item or beverage factories as per their internal demand and supply of raw materials and needs to other zobas.

Table-2

Sr.

Name of Industry

Production

Employees

Zoba

1

Barka Canneries

Canned food

578

Maekel

2

Red Sea Bottlers Sh. Co.

Soft drink

260

Maekel

3

Keih Bahri Food Products

Flour

216

Maekel

4

Red Sea General Mills

Flour

204

NRS

5

Asmara Food Industry Co.

Biscuits

168

Maekel

6

Dibarwa Industry

Biscuit

118

Debub

7

ERTEPA

Tea

95

Maekel

8

Asmara Meat and Milk

Cheese

95

Maekel

9

Dubarua Liquor Factory

Beverage

86

Debub

10

Total industries 63

Food & Beverage

<51

All Zobas

11

Total industries 08

Food & Beverage

<85

All Zobas

Source : Ministry of Trade and Industry, 2004. < - Less than

Food industry divides into three categories as per their labour requirements. The first category includes less than fifty-one employees working in sixty three different food industries, second less than eighty five employees working in eight different food industries and third less than six hundred employees working in nine different food industries (Table-2).

Food industry necessitate an actively encourage to undertake of supply and demand surveys, in order to further identify and exploit the potential of intra-zobas market trade. Some patterns of specialization (Like Egypt food exhibition & cultural exchange programme in Expo, May 2006 ) may emerge depending upon the comparative strength of the economies that will encourage mutual trade and investment flows and may nurture the free trade arrangement swiftly. Similarly, i t is the high time for India to draw attention towards Eritrea as HRD investment location because of agro-fertile land for agricultural research & food processing and social development. Mr. Osman Saleh, Minister of Education and Mr. Arafaine, Minister of Agriculture visited India (mid June 2006) to strengthen further the existing cooperation in the agriculture and education sectors. The focal suggestions to strengthen food industrialization in Eritrea are:

•  Liberalizing food trade in goods on the basis of mutual beneficial trade arrangements among the zobas.

•  Promoting efficiency in production.

•  Enhancing food production and trade.

•  Promoting economic development and diversification as well as industrialization.

•  Approve common standards of food trade documentation & procedures within the zobas.

•  Substantiate adequate co-ordination and facilitation of food trade and transport activities within the zobas and intra-zobas.

•  Arrange training programs related to food industry.

Intra-zobas economic cooperation is considered to be an answer to Eritrea 's food developmental needs. Various steps were taken for integrating intra-zobas economies that creating opportunities for projects in all sectors including agriculture, manufacturing and services. Institutional capacity building is crucial for food industrial development. All technical schools will offer Eritrea trained and educated workforce to strengthen food industry. Eritrea has geographic advantages in connecting the African, Middle East and Asian continents. There is a need to develop food industries and economic relations in a widespread way. Today, there is a need to work to understand the self-reliant food industrialization vision through a bilateral and multilateral socio-economic cooperation. The economic development needs to be strengthened between Eritrea 's foundation based on their indigenous social and economic environment that includes priority to Agriculture sector and Agro-industries.

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Myth of UN Peacekeepers in Eritrea and its International Repercussion
Dr. Suresh Kumar
Published in Eritrea Profile, Vol. I3 No. 32, 28 June 2006

The UN Security Council (UNSC) resolution no. 1681/2006, dated May 31, 2006 failed to apprehend the guilty party in one-sided border dispute between Ethiopia and Eritrea. Do you recognize, convince yourself and justify it as a genuine dispute?

We all know that how Ethiopia failed to recognize its own autograph signed during Algiers Peace Agreement, April 13, 2002. UN Charter under Chapter 7 writes, “ It holds the security Council legally duty-bound to take punitive action against the party that fails to live up to its pledge .” UN preamble mentions that peace and integrity of sovereign states is respected in general and Eritrea in particularly but neither the General Assembly nor Security Council is coming forward to do it.

Is the peace of Eritrea not requisite on the globe as a member of UN or is it indispensable for the developed world only, which excused them to attack on any member country. Or Ethiopia and their friendly states do not want to see a peaceful, developing and achieving self-reliant neighbour on the Red Sea. It is a fact that Ethiopia voluntarily signed Algiers Peace Agreement and there was no national as well as international pressure on it under the inspection of UN Security Council and representatives of the international community are witnessed to it.

Historically, the settlement of international dispute under UN witnessed diverse solution in various border disputes. The case of Korean Dispute 1950, the nationalization of Swaz Canal Crisis 1956, Lebanese Crisis 1958, Congo Crisis and role of peace keepers 1960, Russian intervention in Hungary (1956) and Czechoslovakia (1968), Israeli-Syrian border dispute 1974, Iraq-Kuwait border dispute1990-2006 and arbitrary solution of it are the glimpse of it where the military interference was used for the establishment and promotion of peace.

UNSC resolution no. 1681/2006, dated May 31, 2006 decided to trim UN peace keeping force by about 30% from Eritrea-Ethiopia border. Globally, the common man interpretation to this resolution is many-fold.

  1. First , Ethiopian Prime Minister Mr. Meles Zenawi may rectify its past mistake and accepted UN appeal to cooperate with the Boundary Commission and agree to respect Algiers Peace Agreement and demolish its illegal occupancy in territory of Dembe Mangul, zone of Eritrea.

  2. Second , it is well known that Tigray Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF) is financially and militarily supported and playing under the hands of foreign donors. These foreign donor activities (Like Al Qyada and its leader Bin Laden and Taliban militant Groups) in a sovereign state is labeled as ‘ Insurgency Activities ' by USA and EU member countries and attacked militarily on these forces under the flag of UN peacekeepers. But USA and EU kept mum on the issue of insurgency activities through the border of Ethiopia to disturb Eritrea's peaceful environment and do not wish for tracing Ethiopia under the list of terrorist sponsored state.

  3. Third , keeping the importance of geopolitics Eritrea, there is some element in UN that does not desire for peace and prospect in this region and showing their back by trimming peacekeeper's strength.

It shows the double-standard politics involved in the reputed organization of UN. It seems that UN failed to establish peaceful environment in Eritrea, implementation of Boundary Commission decision and check cross border terrorist activities of TPLF.

The ultimate solution to check these dubious politics in UN is to strengthen Security Council. It is the right time for the expansion of Security Council permanent membership with equal status (With Veto) to Africa, Asia and Latin America countries, which will help to strengthen the real solution in Afro-Asian region on the one hand and maintain its preamble intact (For peace and security) on the other hand. Along with it, this expansion will offer a new lease of life to UN and its bodies to lead a peaceful implementation of Algiers Peace Agreement. UN will dissociate countries involving in insurgency/terrorist activities to disturb peaceful environment of its neighbourhood. As a result, it will usher brotherhood environment and We The People of UN--- will come true in real terms in the changing international politics.

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Self-Reliance Movement and Growth of Agriculture Sector in Eritrea

Dr. Suresh Kumar

Eritrea Profile, Vol. I3 No. 27, 10 June 2006.

 

The 15th independence celebration of Eritrea came forward with the inspiration of self-reliance. Eritrea wanted to be self-reliant and dispense social and economic justice to the people. Eritrea, today focuses on area of human resource development and capacity building. This slogan focuses on the agriculture dominant region of low land area, Dega zone and other, which produce groundnut, sesame, millet, cotton, sorghum, etc. One major challenge of the dysfunctional nature of agricultural markets in Eritrea is the lack of physical infrastructure facilities, storage facilities and major and feeder roads. Thus, major impetus need to be given like:

· Building the major roads of the country and also feeder roads in producing regions,

· Develop the human capital,

· Develop marketing information tools from village to regional places,

· Build up central markets to enable better and quicker local and international market information analysis and dissemination.

The vast potentials of the agriculture sector in Eritrea require infrastructure development, agro-industry and the food security system including buffer stock. Infrastructure should be a priority to connect rural and urban areas through road, railway, telephone, electricity, potable water, education and health services that help in achieving self-reliant in real terms. It is the time to re-strengthen the old train routes and introduce new routes to connect different zones to capital city, which will help to strengthen agriculture activities, animal husbandry, commercial and social activities in this zone. This will be a move to strengthen regional trade activities between Eritrea and neighbouring countries on the one hand and facilitate economic self-reliant to indigenous people living in different zones on the other hand.

Building of buffer stocks helps to protect unnecessary consumption and to ensure that the food is well distributed at the time of emergency among the poor section of the society in the country. The food security system in Eritrea should involve public distribution system (Hidri shop), which involves procurement at minimum support price from farmers and distribution systems. The public distribution system (PDS) provides food grains at minimum support price. It is the time to expand its sphere from central zone to other zones that will help the people (Living below poverty line) in getting essential food items at minimum rates. The PDS also includes 'food for work' program.

The critical need for moving agriculture forward in Eritrea is underlined by the need to increase food supply to feed a rapidly growing population, to provide employment, income growth to reduce absolute poverty and food insecurity for a predominantly rural-based population. Since Eritrea has a large pool of unskilled labor, agricultural development can relieve the growing unemployment problem on the one hand and increase in agricultural income on the other hand. A ‘poverty focused’ economic development policy has best chance of success if it is agricultural-led, or if it is based on increasing agricultural productivity that result in food security and the reduction in absolute poverty. The structure of cooperative farming in Eritrea has the potential to reduce food insecurity, absolute poverty and environmental degradation. Eritrea should play a key role in supporting the development of a properly functioning national integrated agricultural production and marketing system. Apart from the current practice, Eritrea peasant requirements to be given the necessary support and advice to produce crops suitable to those geographical areas and generate demand for the produce in the local or export market. Developing Eritrea institutions that promote the four prime movers of agricultural development can meet this challenge:

1. Production of appropriate technologies and investments in agricultural research;

2. Human capital investments and vocational skills of poor people by investment in private and public schools, training programs, on-the-job experience and health;

3. Investment in infrastructure like dams, irrigation facilities, telecommunications, railways and roads; and

4. Investments in farmer support institutions such as marketing, credit, fertilizer, and seed distribution systems.

Each of the above movers is important and complementary. It underscores the critical need to develop agro-ecology, specific technologies to raise crop productivity, investment in infrastructure and in agricultural support institutions, marketing and credit in order to overcome problems of productivity and remove weak linkages within the rural economy. It also implies that success in transforming agriculture along these lines can reduce natural resource degradation, and thereby enable Eritrea to break out of the absolute poverty-environmental degradation-food insecurity trap on the one hand and strengthen the agricultural self-sufficiency in this region on the other hand. Their coordinated effort in this regard is quite invaluable as it significantly contributes towards meeting the challenging tasks of food self-sufficiency and food security in the country and relieves donors of their continued humanitarian responsibility of providing food aid to Eritrea.