International News - Ethiopian News

Flashpoint on the Nile: Egypt Destabilizing Ethiopia

By Dr. Aklog Birara

Egypt-EthiopiaJanuary 21, 2020 ( -- A flashpoint in current diplomatic relations in Africa today that can potentially lead to war is Egypt’s continued assertion that it will continue to exercise its hegemony over the Nile.

Historically, Egypt’s relations with Ethiopia have been characterized by mutual mistrust and suspicion. The core policy issue behind this intractable problem is Egypt’s belief that its hegemony over Nile waters is dependent on Ethiopia’s internal ethnic and religious divisions, it's continued socioeconomic, technological, national security and defense backwardness; and its

National Interest Not Compromised by GERD Deal: Ethiopian Officials

By Staff reporter    

GERD-GeduJanuary 17, 2020 ( -- Ethiopia did not give away its national interest during the latest US-mediated talks in connection to the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), said Ethiopian Officials.

Given the fragile political situation in Ethiopia today, there have been persistent doubts by some Ethiopian observers as to whether the government has the capacity to conclude a fair agreement with Egypt, including the latest one which has raised several questions.

Briefing journalists after the tripartite talks in Washington DC, Ethiopian Foreign Minister Gedu Andargachew said the

Why Egypt is Winning on the Diplomatic Front

By Dr. Aklog Birara

GERD-Egypt-winningJanuary 17, 2020 ( -- Ethiopia began the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), a monumental project estimated to cost $4 billion in 2011, with fanfare and ceremony. I welcomed this initiative that was conceived by Emperor Haile Selassie but made virtually unattainable because of Egyptian rigidity and the prevailing diplomatic conditions at the time.

I continue to contend that Ethiopia serves as the origin of 90 percent of Nile waters and has a legitimate right not only to finish the GERD for electric power generation; but also, to construct other dams for irrigation. Egypt’s colonial position of “historical

Ethiopia, Egypt, Sudan Agree on “Step by Step” Filling of GERD

By Staff Reporter

Trump-GERDJanuary 16, 2020 ( -- In their latest talks in Washington DC, Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan agreed the filling of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) shall take place step by step and based on the flow and volume of the Nile River.

The water ministers of the three countries, in a joint statement issued at the end of their meeting, confirmed their consent that the filling of the dam shall take place only during the rainy season and the filling period can be extended based on environmental circumstances.

It is not clear why and how Egypt and Ethiopia changed their instances on the filling and operations of the dam af

Ethiopian PM Calls for Mediation over GERD Project

By Staff Reporter

Ethiopia-South-AfricaJanuary 13, 2020 ( -- Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has called on the South African President Cyril Ramaphosa to mediate between Ethiopia and Egypt over the contentious Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) project as the president takes over rotating chairmanship of the African Union Commission next month.

The premier’s request is reported as a first move by Ethiopia seeking a mediator, in addition to the involvement of third parties, namely the US government and the World Bank, on the negotiations of Africa’s biggest hydropower dam project.

The recent tripartite talks in Addi

GERD Talks Fail Due to New Demands from Egypt

By Staff Reporter

GERD-meeting-Addis-AbabaJanuary 10, 2020 ( -- Ethiopia said the latest talks with Sudan and Egypt over the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) project on the Nile River ended without agreement due to Egypt’s new demands.

Briefing journalists on the outcome of the latest talks held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopian Minister of Water, Irrigation and Energy Dr. Sileshi Bekele said the discussion ended without agreement as Egypt came up with a new proposal suggesting that the dam filling period shall be between 12 and 21 years.

“Egypt has presented an ‘unf

Ethiopia, Eritrea to Start Comprehensive Cooperation by 2020

By Staff Reporter

Isaias-Visit-Addis-AbabaDecember 26, 2019 ( -- The leaders of Ethiopia and Eritrea have committed to launching a comprehensive co-operation and practical measures as of next year aiming at extricating the peoples the two neighboring states out of poverty.

The leaders’ commitment comes as the Eritrean President Isaias Afeworki wrapped up his two days visit to Ethiopia where along with Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed laid a foundation stone for the construction of a new Eritrean Embassy building in Addis Ababa.

“We are very pleased to provide this plot of land for the construction Eritrean Embassy buildi

Eritrean President on Official Working Visit to Ethiopia

By Staff Reporter

Isaias-Afewerki-Abiy-AhmedDecember 25, 2019 ( -- Eritrean President Isaias Afeworki is on his second official working visit to Ethiopia after the two neighboring states ended their two decades of enmity last year.

President Isaias was greeted by Prime Minister Abiy and other senior government officials at Bole International Airport. The Eritrean delegation included Foreign Minister Osman Saleh and Presidential Adviser Yemane Gebreab, among the others.

The Eritrean delegation has visited Unity Park at the national palace, Sheger Beautifying Project Entoto, Entoto Observatory and research center and other infrast

Egypt Drops Key Demands on GERD; Agreement Expected Next Month

By Staff Reporter

Sileshi-Bekele-GERDDecember 24, 2019 ( -- Egypt has come up with a new proposal suggesting that the natural flow of the Nile River should be maintained as Ethiopia begins operation of its hydroelectric dam on the Blue Nile, Ethiopian official has said.

Briefing journalists on Tuesday in Addis Ababa on the outcome of the recent talks between Ethiopia, Sudan, and Egypt in Khartoum, Ethiopian Minister of Water, Irrigation and Energy Sileshi Bekele said Ethiopia has rejected Egypt’s proposal as it denies the rights of upstream countries to make use of the Nile water.

The minister said Egypt, however, has dropped its

Ethiopian Draft Law on Hate Speech Can Significantly Curtail Freedom of Expression: HRW

By Staff Reporter

Human-Rights-WatchDecember 20, 2019 ( -- Human Rights Watch (HRW) has warned that Ethiopia’s draft Proclamation on Hate Speech and Disinformation Prevention and Suppression can significantly curtail freedom of expression if approved.

‘’Any law that limits freedom of expression by punishing hate speech must be narrowly drawn and enforced with restraint,’‘ HRW cautioned in a report released on Friday.

HRW said Ethiopia’s track record of using vague laws, such as the anti-terrorism law to crack down on ‘peaceful expressions of dissident’, offers reason for alarm.


Saudi Fund for Development Approves $140 Million Loan to Ethiopia

By Staff Reporter

Saudi-Fund-Development-SFDDecember 19, 2019 ( -- The Saudi Fund for Development (SFD) has approved a $140 million loan to Ethiopia in an agreement signed on Thursday at the Prime Minister’s office of Ethiopia.

$75 million of the soft loan would be used for the construction of the 118-km Debre Marko-Mota road project in northern Ethiopia while the rest, $65 million, will be used for the implementation of One WaSH National Programme.

The agreement was signed by Ahmed Shide, Minister of Finance and Khaled bin Sulaiman Alkhudairy, Vice-Chairman and Managing Director of the Board of Directors of SFD.

Price Controls on Export Commodities Do Not Work

By Trilok Jhala, Himatsing International P. Ltd, Singapore

Humera-SesameDecember 19, 2019 ( -- The following article was written in response to an article posted on on October 21, 2019, titled: “Ethiopia Introduces New Directive to Halt Fraud in Export Business.”

The present article is written to express concerns with some of the contents contained in that article.

With the highest respect and utmost regard for the Honorable State Minister of Trade and Industry, Ato Misganu Arega, it is vital to point out that an important angle or two may have been missed and, therefore, not taken into consideration in the article.

Forbes Names Ethiopian President One of World’s Most Powerful Women

By Staff Reporter

Sahle-Work-Zewdie-Forbes-ListDecember 16, 2019 ( -- Ethiopian President Sahle-Work Zewde has been named one of the World’s Most Powerful Women of 2019 by Forbes magazine, Ethiopian Embassy in Brussels disclosed. The Ethiopian President is the only African woman on the list.

President Sahle-Work Zewde is a role model not only for Ethiopian women but women all around the world, Forbes quoted as saying.

Sahle-Work is ranked Number 93 on Forbes’ 2019 World’s 100 Most Powerful Women list and is the only African woman listed this year.

In October 2018, Ms. Zewde became Ethiopia’s first

Pre-Aksumite Town Discovered Flourished for 1,400 Years

By Staff Reporter

Bet-Semaeti-Tigray-EthiopiaDecember 13, 2019 ( -- Archaeologists have discovered an ancient buried town in Tigray State of northern Ethiopia that flourished for 1400 years before and during the Aksumite Kingdom, according to radiocarbon dating tests and as reported by

The town was part of a powerful civilization called Aksum, which dominated east Africa for centuries and traded with other great powers like the Roman Empire.

“This is one of the most important ancient civilizations, but people don’t know it,” says Michael Harrower of Johns Hopkins Universit

IMF Announces $2.9 Billion Financial Assistance for Ethiopia

By Staff Reporter

IMF-EthiopiaDecember 12, 2019 ( -- The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has announced a $2.9 billion financial assistance to Ethiopia, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has disclosed.

In his face-book page on Thursday, the Ethiopian premier said the money will be used to finance the implementation of the recently launched homegrown economic reform.

The Financial Times on Wednesday reported that the IMF is poised to approve landmark nearly $3 billion loan for Ethiopia while a day before Ethiopian State Minister of Finance Dr. Eyob Tekalegn disclosed that World Bank (WB) and International Monetary Fund (IMF) decided to provide a total

UNESCO Inscribes Ethiopian Epiphany as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity

By Staff Reporter

Ethiopian-EpiphanyDecember 12, 2019 ( -- The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has decided to inscribe Ethiopian Epiphany on its lists of intangible cultural heritage of humanity.

The epiphany celebration was one of the five elements of Intangible Cultural Heritages added by the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage meeting in Bogota, Colombian capital on Wednesday.

The epiphany celebration becomes the 4th intangible cultural heritage of Ethiopia inscribed as world intangible heritage, next to Meskel, the Geda system, and Fichee Chamb

Ethiopia, Egypt, Sudan to Develop Technical Rules on Filling, Operation of GERD

By Staff Reporter

GERD-meeting-DCDecember 10, 2019 ( -- Ethiopia Egypt and Sudan are set to develop technical rules on the filling and operation of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD), define drought conditions and decide on mitigating measures to be taken if drought occurs in the upcoming meetings to be held in Sudan and Ethiopia.

The consensus was made after the foreign ministers of the three countries met in Washington on Monday in the presence of US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and World Bank President David Malpass in an effort to resolve the dispute which has lasted several years.

According to the joint statement issued on

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed Receives Nobel Peace Prize

By Staff Reporter

Nobel-Peace-Prize-Abiy-AhmedDecember 10, 2019 ( -- Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed received the Nobel Peace Prize 2019 in Oslo, Norway ushered by praise in recognition of his personal efforts in ending two decades of enmity with neighboring Eritrea.

“I am honored to be here recognizing and encouraging my contribution to the peaceful resolution of the border dispute between Ethiopia and Eritrea. I accept this award on behalf of Ethiopians and Eritreans especially those who made ultimate sacrifices in the cause of peace, Abiy said in his acceptance speech.

Berit Reiss-Andersen, Chairperson of the Norwegian Nobe

CNN Names Ethiopian Freweini Mebrahtu “Hero of the Year”

By Staff Reporter

Freweini-Mebrahtu-EthiopiaDecember 9, 2019 ( -- CNN has named Ethiopian Innovator Freweini Mebrahtu the 2019 CNN Hero of the Year in recognition of her work on menstruation and keeping girls in school as well as fighting to end the cultural stigma attached with menstruation.

Freweini Mebrahtu designed and patented a reusable menstrual pad for girls in her native Ethiopia who do not have access to sanitary pads.

Upon receiving her award, Mebrahtu said that "I don't even know what to say. I am so humbled and grateful for CNN ... this is for all the girls and women everywhere. Dignity

Hate Speech Proclamation Can Threaten Freedom of Expression: David Kaye

By Staff Reporter

David-Kaye-EthiopiaDecember 9, 2019 ( – At the invitation of the Ethiopian government, the United Nations Special Rapporteur on the promotion and protection of the right to freedom of opinion and expression, David Kaye concluded the first mission to Ethiopia by a mandate-holder of the United Nations (UN) Special Procedures.

During his stay in Ethiopia From December 2-9, the Special Rapporteur evaluated the situation of freedom of opinion and expression in Ethiopia, where he met with various government officials, including the Federal Minister of Peace, the Federal Minister of Innovation and Technology, as well as represent


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