May 24 – Independence Day in Eritrea

Posted on May 24, 2017

Eritrea is that teeny nation,
colored green here,
in Northeastern Africa.
Eritreans fought a 30-year battle against Ethiopia!

After all that fighting, on this date in 1991, Eritrean People's Liberation Front forces moved into the capital, Asmara, and declared independence from Ethiopia.

And then there were a couple more years of fighting between an independent Eritrea and Ethiopia.

AND then there were skirmishes between Eritrea and two other neighboring countries.

AND in all this time - more than two decades! - national elections in Eritrea have been postponed over and over again, democracy, yet.

AND the Eritrean government drafts people into its armed forces for long - actually, indefinite! - periods of time.

AND Eritrea is rated as having one of the worst human rights records and the absolute least press freedom in the world!! 


Apparently Americans are rarely treated to stories about Eritrea in our media, perhaps partly because of the lack of press freedom enjoyed in the nation. Also, there is very, very little tourism in the nation - which is not surprising! With all the grim facts outlined above, who would go there?

But although some refer to Eritrea as the North Korea of Africa, others say that the capital city of Asmara does not seem - at least to a casual and privileged traveler - as repressive or as unpleasant as advertised. Check out this 2014 travel story

The landscapes outside of the capital are often gorgeous!


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