The name "Eritrea" is derived from Sinus Erythraeus, the name given to the body of water between the Arabian Peninsula and the African continent by Greek traders in the third century B.C.E. (now known as the Red Sea). Later, under the Roman Empire, it was known as Mare Erythraeum, which translates as "the Red Sea."
The word "eritrea" is an ancient Greek term that means red-haired. The name "Eritrea" was first given to a region in what is now Ethiopia. The area was named after a powerful king who called himself Erirta. [source: History Channel]
How did Eritrea become a country? In 1993, a group of scholars met in Geneva, Switzerland, and drafted a constitution for an independent nation state. The country became officially sovereign after its independence from Ethiopia in 1998. Eritrea's capital city is Asmara. Its largest city is Massawa.
What language is spoken in Eritrea? Afar is the official language, but most people also speak Arabic. Eritreans are mainly Muslim, with some members of other religions including Christians.
Why are there no ethnic Eritreans? Ethnic Eritreans exist but they make up only a small percentage of the population. During World War I, the British occupied much of present-day Eritrea and used it as a route to attack Italian colonies.
This name is derived from the Greek term for the Red Sea, which was renamed the Erythraean Sea after the Greek word for "red," eruthros, erythros. In the late nineteenth century, the Italians established the Eritrean colony around Asmara. Eritrea was annexed by Ethiopia after World War II.
Isaias Afewerki, Isaias Afewerki, Isaias Afewerki, Isaias Afewerki, Isaias Afewerki, Isaias Afewerki, Isaias Afewerki, I Isaias Afwerki (born February 2, 1946 in Asmara, Eritrea) is an Eritrean independence leader and the country's president since 1993. Isaias was born in Asmara in 1946, when the city was under United Nations-mandated rule of the United Kingdom.
A temporary administration was formed, led by Isaias, and a vote on Eritrean independence from Ethiopia was scheduled for the future. In the referendum conducted in April 1993, Eritreans overwhelmingly supported independence.
Eritrea is a tens of thousands of years old culture. It is a land that has long been inhabited by early people. This explains its abundance of archeological sites as evidence of early human occupation. It's regarded as the world's archeological Eden.
In 1993, Ethiopia and Eritrea signed a peace agreement to end two decades of conflict. Since then, relations have been relatively stable and peaceful. In 2001, Eritrea became a member of the United Nations. However, it does not have any diplomatic offices or representatives of its own in other countries.
Eritrea is a one-party state with no opposition politics allowed. There is also a military presence in the country with many officers holding high positions in the government. The economy is based on agriculture but also includes mining and textiles as industries. As far as tourism is concerned, it is still an emerging field for Eritrea with little promotion done by the government. However, there are several historical sites in the country worth visiting.
Some interesting facts about Eritrea:
It is the only country in Africa that shares a border with three continents (Europe, Asia, and Africa).
The capital city of Asmara has been listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO since 1979.
According to new study, Eritrea's Red Sea coast possesses "huge oil and gas deposits," but the country's natural resources have been mostly untapped due to the country's unending struggle with Ethiopia and the isolation of the Afwerki regime. The nation is a former Italian colony that is now a key trading partner.... No end date has been set for Afewerki's rule.
In 2001, following three years of civil war, Ethiopia annexed Eritrean land, including the entire province of Kembata-Hantien. Most analysts believe that Ethiopia wants to keep Eritrea weak by denying it access to the sea. A few energy companies are currently working in the region with hopes of finding more oil. However, due to ongoing disputes between Ethiopia and Eritrea, many experts doubt that these efforts will be successful.
It is one of the least developed countries in the world. Source
Eritrea is located in the Horn of Africa, bounded by the Red Sea on the northeast and east, Sudan on the west and northwest, Ethiopia on the south, and Djibouti on the southeast. Its territory is mostly desert except for a small coastal region.
As far as maritime borders are concerned, Eritrea has no sea boundaries. However, it does share an exclusive economic zone with Ethiopia that extends 200 nautical miles from each country's coastline.
In 1998, following two years of negotiations, Eritrea and Yemen signed a treaty of friendship and alliance. The treaty stipulates that both countries will assist each other if either one is attacked by any third party. It also includes provisions for military cooperation between the two nations. The treaty was ratified by Yemen's parliament in February 1999 and came into effect later that year.
Eritrea has been criticized for its poor human rights records. Although there is freedom of speech and press, there are reports of political prisoners being held by the government. There have also been allegations of torture being used by security forces against those who oppose the regime.
However, Eritrea has maintained close ties with Israel. In April 2001, Israeli and Ethiopian officials signed agreements providing for cultural exchanges and joint oil exploration projects in Eritrea. Israel has also provided arms to Eritrea, including aircraft and armored cars.