Emerging from the Doldrums? Governance and Politics in Eritrea



The Eritrean state is born out of thirty-year liberation struggle. Following the demise of Italian colonialism, instead of exercising the right to self-determination and decolonisation, it was forcibly tied with Ethiopia through UN-sponsored federation. The Emperor Haile Selassie aborted the federation that was put in force in 1952, just after ten years, in 1962. The Eritreans embarked on protracted liberation war in 1961 to exercise the right of self-determination. Thirty years of bloody war against twenty times bigger enemy, supported, first by the USA and later by the USSR, ended when the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front (EPLF), victoriously marched into Asmara the capital of Eritrea in May 1991, wiping out the 2nd Division of the Ethiopian army based in Eritrea. After two years of interim period, popular referendum was held and with resounding, yes vote, Eritrea became de jure independent in 1993.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2021

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Nordic African InstituteUppsalaSweden

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