Visafric May 23
As Canadian troops prepare to return home at the end of their six month peacekeeping mission to Eritrea and Ethiopia, David Kilgour, Canada's Secretary of State for Africa and Latin America says he is proud of his country's contribution to the UN peacekeeping force which, he says, has been a success.
Mr. Kilgour, who arrived in Eritrea last night, met with Eritrean Foreign Minister Ali Sayeed Abdela to discuss ways of further strengthening the revitalized relationship between the two countries.
Asmara - US and Eritrea today, Wednesday May 16, signed a loan agreement for $10 million dollars. The agreement between the two countries was signed by US Ambassador William D. Clarke and the Government of Eritrea represented by Dr. Woldai Futur.
The loan will be used to purchase approximately 81,000 metric tons of wheat and sorghum. The loan is being issued with one percent interest rate and a repayment period of 30 years.
The signing ceremony took place at the Denden Club in Asmara.
Copyright Visafric productions
Mixed feelings of joy and anxiety written all over their faces, over five thousand Eritrean civilians displaced by the border war between Eritrea and Ethiopia today began their long awaited journey to their home villages in the Temporary Security Zone.
The returnees, all from Alba camp in the Tsorona area, are overjoyed at being able to finally go home. At the same time, they are afraid of what they'll find upon their return: massive destruction and the threat of landmines.
"Our return is a very symbolic return," says Mrs. Zaida, one of the returnees.
Asmara - Eritrean and Ethiopian religious leaders have agreed to visit each other's country and meet with war-affected populations. The leaders agreed to cross the borders of Eritrea and Ethiopia and hold peace meetings staring May 19 to 21.
"We have agreed to meet in Adi Keih in Eritrea and Adi Grat in Ethiopia", said Rev Zerit Yohannes the secretary and spokesperson of the Eritrean delegation comprising Christian and Muslim religious leaders. "We want to create dialogue between the two war affected people.
Asmara - The United Nations and the Government of Eritrea on Thursday appealed to the International donor community for almost $224 million to provide food and non-food humanitarian relief to some two million Eritreans affected by drought and the 33 months old border war with neighbouring Ethiopia.
The Eritrean Relief and Rehabilitation Commission, ERREC, said that three years of drought and a bloody border war with Ethiopia have negatively impacted on the country's ability to feed itself. Hence 70 percent of the total appeal is for food aid.
Canadian Defense Minister Art Eggleton said on Tuesday that Canadian peacekeepers would be deployed to patrol the eastern section of the border between Eritrea and Ethiopia.
Speaking to Visafric in Asmara after his meeting with Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki and Defense Minister Sebhat Efrem, Mr. Eggleton said he had informed President Isaias that some 85 Canadian troops would be deployed to the eastern sector of the border to cover for Kenyan troops who are late in arriving.
(Saturday, December 23, 2000)
In an Interview with local journalists on December 19, President Isaias Afewerki affirmed that the comprehensive peace agreement reached between Eritrea and Ethiopia to resolve the border dispute can only be implemented by peaceful and legal means based on colonial boundaries.
Eritrea Profile Volume 7 No. 37 Nov. 18
President Isaias Afwerki held talks yesterday with Mr. Legwaila Joseph Legwaila, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for the UN Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE). Mr. Legwaila said that although the mandate of the UNMEE is to ensure the implementation of the Agreement on Cessation of Hostilities, it attaches great importance to an early conclusion of a peace settlement on the part of the conflicting parties.
Asmara: Eritrea has responded positively to a request from the UN for land and air corridor to allow for the unhindered movement of the United Nations Mission for Eritrea and Ethiopia, UNMEE.
ENAP - With some of the war displaced Eritreans beginning to return to their homes, investigation into human rights abuses against civilians remains a major issue, Anne Edgerton from Refugees International told US groups gathered to discuss Ethiopian violence against Eritrean women.
At a meeting organized by Refugees International and Interaction (a coalition of over 165 non-profit organizations working world-wide) Ms. Edgerton said that documentation and investigation of Ethiopian human rights abuses against Eritrean civilians remains a major issue.
Visafric Oct 9
The EU Commissioner for Development and Humanitarian Aid, Mr. Poul Neilson, returned home on Monday after a three day working visit to Eritrea during which he visited camps for displaced Eritreans and met with the Eritrean leader .
The meeting between President Isaias Afwerki and Mr. Nielson focused on relations between Eritrea and the EU with a focus on enhanced cooperation under the newly signed Cotonou agreement. The two also discussed progress in the peace process.
CPE September 5, 2000
Introduction and Background
One of Citizens for Peace in Eritrea's (CPE) main roles is the promotion of peace and understanding not only between the peoples of Eritrea and Ethiopia but among all the peoples of the region. The advocacy work on behalf of the war victims that has occupied CPE so far is actually part of a bigger picture of peace-building and an important pre-condition for the process of reconciliation
CPE very much associates itself with the notion that the conflict between Ethiopia and Eritrea is one that could have been avoided.
By Haile Ghebrat, Visafric
An Eritrean medical task force/group which works under the umbrella of Eritree, a charitable Organization based in Toronto shipped 400 pounds of essential medicine and 100 pounds of medical supply to the war displaced civilians in Eritrea.
Eritreans in the medical profession, Toronto youth Association (ESYA), displaced Eritrean women (DEWCERC) & children's emergency relief committee played key roles in the collection and shipment of the medicine.
The smiles on their faces say it all. The children at Alba and Mai Habar - two camps for ward displaced Eritreans in Southern Eritrea - are happy to be back in school again. The pain and suffering of seeing loved ones die, of being separated from their families will remain with them for a long time to come. But for a few hours a day, the excitement of learning new things helps block the painful memories of the death and destruction they witnessed when neighboring Ethiopia escalated a border conflict into a full blown invasion of their country just over two months ago.
From 7 a.m.
Asmara ---- Visiting UN Emergency Relief Coordinator Carolyn McAskie, on Saturday praised the Eritrean authorities' handling of the humanitarian crisis affecting 50 percent of the population and said that she would "make a special plea for Eritrea" to help meet the Eritrean government's appeal for US $ 183 million, with the UN concentrating on raising half of the amount.
"I am very impressed with the way the Eritrean authorities are dealing with the crisis.
Ms. Carolyn McAskie, Emergency Relief coordinator for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, on Friday paid a visit to the Harena displacement camp outside of Mai Habar, where over 24,000 internally displaced Eritreans, most of whom are from Senafe, are temporarily seeking refuge.
McAskie was accompanied by ERREC commissioner Ms. Wokru Tesfamichael and various local UN representatives.
Mr. Kal'ab Haile Camp coordinator briefed Ms McAskie on conditions facing Eritreans displaced in the southern part of the country.
Karbosa, Southern Eritrea (Visafric, July 1, 2000) - Hundreds of thousands of Eritreans are alive today because they sought refuge in the country's numerous mountains, valleys, caves, cliffs and rocky overhangs to escape the May-June Ethiopian offensive against Eritrea.
Asmara -- International response to the humanitarian needs in Eritrea continues to be woefully inadequate with only one month food supply in stock for Eritrea's 1.5 million displaced people, warns Dr. Festo Kavishe, UNICEF Representative to Eritrea.
With the onset of rain in Eritrea and the majority of the displaced still living in the open, Dr. Kavishe says, there is urgent need for increased international assistance in the areas of shelter and health care. "The need is there but the response has not been adequate," he said.