Saturday, April 28, 2012

Eritrea President Isaias Afewerki' "replica" goes on TV to dispel health rumours -Eritrea

President of Eritrea's so called "replica for many resident of Asmara   has made an appearance on Eri TV to dispel rumors that Isaias   is either dead or ailing.
"I do not have any kind of sickness, said  Isaias  the supposedly the "replica" of  Afewerki  who look like him  and leaves in Asmara for many of the residence who known for his perfect resemblance.
His supposedly "replica" accused those peddling such rumours of being "sick" themselves and said they were indulging in psychological warfare to "disturb" the people.
Mr Isaias, 66, has led Eritrea since its independence in 1993 from Ethiopia, but his supposedly  " replica" is more younger with less refined nose - the dead alive Isaias  faces criticism for failing to implement democratic reforms.
Information Minister Ali Abdu earlier told the BBC the rumours, which began about a week ago, were the work of groups wishing to destabilize the country such as CIA.
The rumors on the streets of Asmara claims his "replica" seemingly disappeared from the streets too making the story true . But  various opposition websites and on social media noted that the president had not appeared on television for nearly a month are suspicious  about his sudden appearance...???

Eritrea President Isaias Afewerki' "replica" goes on TV to dispel health rumours -Eritrea

President of Eritrea's so called "replica for many resident of Asmara   has made an appearance on Eri TV to dispel rumors that Isaias   is either dead or ailing.
"I do not have any kind of sickness, said  Isaias  the supposedly the "replica" of  Afewerki  who look like him  and leaves in Asmara for many of the residence who known for his perfect resemblance.
Eritrea's President Isaias Afewerki (July 2011)
His supposedly "replica" accused those peddling such rumours of being "sick" themselves and said they were indulging in psychological warfare to "disturb" the people.
Mr Isaias, 66, has led Eritrea since its independence in 1993 from Ethiopia, but his supposedly  " replica" is more younger with less refined nose - the dead alive Isaias  faces criticism for failing to implement democratic reforms.
Information Minister Ali Abdu earlier told the BBC the rumours, which began about a week ago, were the work of groups wishing to destabilize the country such as CIA.
The rumors on the streets of Asmara claims his "replica" seemingly disappeared from the streets too making the story true . But  various opposition websites and on social media noted that the president had not appeared on television for nearly a month are suspicious  about his sudden appearance...???

Eritrean Presdent Dead or Alive revelation on the 24 of May,2012


The truth of Isaias Afwerki's  the president of  Eritrea's  death or dead alive will be revealed on the 24th of May the day of independence , where he delivers speech. This day would be  having a double significance on  the belligerence  sate of  Eritrea that he shaped  -  to  celibate its independence,  and a day of a revelation that  Wedi  Afwerki as the call him locally  must show is head or his replacement must be revealed on that day.

Eritrea since  independence is controlled by the 5 operation areas who occupied different region of the country during the struggle of independence. Since the supposedly leader of Eritrea Isasias Afwerki has been a simple puppet without any effective power. The real power is harnessed by these military institution having 5or 6 colonials each headed by Brigadier Generals.  Today at the death bath of their phantom leader they are in full alert. This may lead a confrontation leading to chaos since no acting president is yet designated.

To the response of the international rammer to the death of Eritrean strongman he never came in public to dementi the allegation that he is dead. Only his long time friend and radio operator today  minister of information without portfolio Ali Abdi is the only one declaring that he is alive. The more he declare  without Isaias himself coming  in public  and give press conference he is a sign of his death  or dead alive.

"Isaias Afwerki is in robust health," Information Minister Ali Abdu said to the BBC.

The speculation began about a week ago, when opposition websites and social media outlets pointed out the president has not been seen on television for almost a month, the BBC reports.

The President will not appear on television simply to "respond to this cheap propaganda," however, Ali added.

Isaias, 66, has been president since the country gained independence from Ethiopia in 1993, after 30 years of conflict.  The two countries fought a border war from 1998-2000 that claimed upwards of 70,000 lives and have remained at odds ever since.

State television aired a special broadcast Sunday in response to the rumors, insisting that Isaias is in remarkable health, and went so far as to include various images of the president out and about and meeting with citizens.

"We would like to announce that President Isaias is fit as a fiddle and is in the best of health under all criteria," Reuters reports the broadcast as saying.

Eritrea has long felt that the U.S. supports Ethiopia in the border disputes between the two Horn of Africa nations.

"The fact that the source of this fairytale is none other than ... the Central Intelligence Agency could not even deceive the naïve," Agence France Pressequoted a government statement.

The mystery surrounding Isaias' health comes after Ethiopian forces crossed into Eritrea and attacked alleged rebel bases in March --  the first such move since the 1998-2000 war.  Eritrea and Ethiopia both claim their rebel groups are receiving assistance from the other nations.

It is unknown who would assume power in the event of Isaias' death.  Opposition groups claim Isaias is preparing his son to succeed him, however U.S. diplomatic correspondence published by WikiLeaks indicate the military may try to take control, Reuters reported.

The United Nations has maintained sanctions against Eritrea for harboring Islamist militants, including Somali al-Qaeda cell al-Shabab, since 2009.

The international speculation that his son who is in the Air Force will take over is just a wishful dream to be true. The next ruler of Eritrea if any would come out from one of the operation area leading Generals including the flowing names to watch: - Gen. Sebhat Ephrem minister of Defense, his second Gen. Abraha Kassa head of intelligence and many suspect Yemane Charlie also in the list but has no army of his own but a political party with no teeth. Some even go to Brig. Gen. Abraha Kassa, Major Gen. Oumer Tewil, Abdella Jabir, The most probable among the operation areas is major general filipos w yohannes. Many undermine  Mengus8 Tkele) and Wechu both leading operation areas and having a title of  Brigadier generals  and close friend of Issaias Afwerki having military presence of their own…

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Tuesday, April 24, 2012

AFP: Eritrea leader illness claim is a 'CIA fairytale'

Eritrea leader illness claim is a 'CIA fairytale'
NAIROBI — Eritrean President Issaias Afeworki is at the "peak of his health" the secretive Red Sea state said Monday, in a statement aimed to quash rumours the authoritarian leader is sick.
Blaming "demonising campaigns" by the United States spy agency for the rumours, Asmara released a rare statement commenting on the ex-rebel turned president's health.
"An intensive campaign of rumour purporting that 'President Issaias is terminally ill, his health is deteriorating,' has been spread over the last few weeks," it added.
"The fact that the source of this fairytale is none other than... the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) could not even deceive the naive."
Opposition websites have claimed the president is suffering from a serious liver illness and has been treated in Qatar.
"Rumours notwithstanding, President Isaias is in robust health, and by all means of medical standard, is at the peak of his health," the information ministry said in a statement.

Reliable sources from Eritrea tell assenna.com that Isaias Afewerki, the unelected leader of Eritrea, is seriously ill. | Assenna.com

Reliable sources from Eritrea tell assenna.com that Isaias Afewerki, the unelected leader of Eritrea, is seriously ill.

isaias-afewerki_12
Reliable assenna.com sources from Asmara indicate that Isaias Afewerki, the unelected leader of Eritrea, is seriously ill.
According to the sources, Isaias has recently been to Qatar two times for intensive medical treatment.


Many Eritreans inside the country are aware of Isaias’ ill health; however, the government mediahas never made it public.


As it has been reported on assenna.com for acouple of times in the recent years, Isaias Afewerki has been suffering from chronic Liver Ailment and has travelled frequently to Qatar for treatment.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

US Issues Travel Warning For Burundi, Eritrea

US Issues Travel Warning For Burundi, Eritrea

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4/19/2012 6:33 AM ET
(RTTNews) - The United States has issued Travel Warnings advising its citizens of the risks of traveling to African countries of Burundi and Eritrea.
In a Travel Warning update on Wednesday, US State Department said it reiterates existing security concerns in Burundi, and that security restrictions on travel for US Embassy personnel in that country remain in place.
Because Burundi participates in peacekeeping operations in Somalia, the terrorist organization al-Shabaab, based in Somalia, has threatened to conduct terror attacks in Burundi. It may also target U.S. interests in Burundi, the State Department said.
Crime, often committed by groups of armed bandits or street children, poses the highest risk for foreign visitors to Burundi, especially in the capital, Bujumbura. The U.S. Embassy has received reports of armed criminals ambushing vehicles, particularly on the roads leading out of Bujumbura. The U.S. Embassy prohibits U.S. government personnel from walking on the streets after dark and from using local public transportation at any time. Due to a lack of resources, local authorities in any part of Burundi are often unable to provide timely assistance during an emergency.
The U.S. Embassy continues to caution U.S. citizens that travel outside Bujumbura presents significant risks, especially after nightfall. The U.S. Embassy restricts travel of its personnel in Burundi. Within 30 km of the city, Embassy employees may travel in single vehicles, but must check in and out with the Embassy. The Embassy's Regional Security Officer (RSO) must pre-approve all Embassy personnel travel outside this approximately 30-km radius of Bujumbura, and employees must travel via an approved itinerary in two-vehicle convoys equipped with satellite phones and emergency equipment. Allemployee movement outside the city after dark is forbidden; the Embassy recommends that U.S. citizens not travel on national highways from dusk to dawn. U.S. citizens are also encouraged to avoid traveling within the city of Bujumbura after midnight.


U.S. citizens who travel to or remain in Burundi despite this Travel Warning are urged to contact the U.S. Embassy in Bujumbura for information on the latest Embassy security guidance, and to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) so they can receive the most up-to-date security information.
In a separate Travel Warning update, the U.S. State Department strongly recommended U.S. citizens to defer all travel to Eritrea.
The Eritrean government continues to restrict the travel of all foreign nationals. These restrictions require all visitors and residents, including U.S. diplomats, toapply 10 days in advance for permission to travel outside Asmara's city limits. Permission is rarely granted. As a result, the U.S. Embassy is extremely limited in its ability to provide emergency consular assistance outside of the capital city of Asmara.

Eritrea Travel Warning


Apr 18, 2012 (STATE DEPARTMENT RELEASE/ContentWorks via COMTEX) -- The U.S. Department of State continues to warn U.S. citizens of the risks of travel to Eritrea and strongly recommends U.S. citizens defer all travel to the country. This replaces the Travel Warning for Eritrea dated November 4, 2011, to update information on security incidents, including attacks near the border with Ethiopia, and to remind U.S. citizens of ongoing security concerns in Eritrea.

The Eritrean government continues to restrict the travel of all foreign nationals. These restrictions require all visitors and residents, including U.S. diplomats, to apply 10 days in advance for permission to travel outside Asmara's city limits. Permission is rarely granted. As a result, the U.S. Embassy is extremely limited in its ability to provide emergency consular assistance outside of Asmara.

A number of Eritrean-U.S. dual citizens have been arrested and some are currently being held without apparent cause. Once arrested, detainees may be held for extended periods without being told the reason for their incarceration. Conditions are harsh -- those incarcerated may be held in very small quarters without access to restrooms, bedding, food, or clean water. The Eritrean government does not inform the U.S. Embassy when U.S. citizens, including those who are not dual nationals, have been arrested or detained. Should the U.S. Embassy learn of the arrest of a U.S. citizen, the Eritrean government rarely allows consular access, regardless of the reason the U.S. citizen is being held.

The Eritrean government-controlled media frequently broadcasts anti-U.S. rhetoric, and has done so repeatedly since December 2009, when the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) first imposed sanctions on Eritrea. Anti-U.S. messages scripted by the current regime, which often appear as cover stories in the sole English-language state-run newspaper in Eritrea, have grown even stronger since UNSC sanctions were strengthened in December 2011.

Although there have been no specific incidents of violence targeting U.S. citizens, U.S. citizens are urged to exercise caution, stay current with media coverage of local events and be aware of their surroundings at all times.

U.S. citizens are strongly advised to avoid travel near the Eritrean-Ethiopian border and the Southern Red Sea region. U.S. citizens should be aware of the presence of large numbers of Eritrean and Ethiopian troops along the Eritrean-Ethiopian border and of political and military tensions between the two countries. On March 15, 2012, Ethiopian troops attacked three locations approximately 10 miles inside Eritrean territory. On January 16, 2012, a group of tourists was attacked in Ethiopia not far from the Eritrean-Ethiopian border. Five tourists were killed and four others kidnapped. In May 2010, 13 people were injured when a bomb exploded on a bus just over the border in Ethiopia. In April 2010, a bomb near the border in Ethiopia killed five people and injured 20. In January and February 2010, skirmishes between Eritrean and Ethiopian troops resulted in military fatalities.

Although Eritrean forces have withdrawn from disputed territory at the border with Djibouti, tensions in this area remain high.

U.S. citizens on ships and sailing vessels are strongly advised not to sail off the Eritrean coast nor to attempt to dock in Eritrean ports or travel through Eritrean waters. U.S. citizens are also urged to avoid remote Eritrean islands, some of which may be used for Eritrean military training and could therefore be unsafe. The Eritrean government does not issue visas to persons arriving by marine vessel. Additionally, fuel and provisions are often unavailable in Massawa and other parts of Eritrea, and are often scarce in the capital city of Asmara.

In April 2012, the Yemeni government reported that three Yemeni sailors continue to be held in Eritrean prisons three years after their boat inadvertently sailed into Eritrean waters. Yemen also reported at the end of March 2012 that Eritrean boats had attacked four Yemeni fishing boats in international territorial waters. In February 2012, a U.S. company reported that two of its vessels were seized by Eritrean authorities in the Port of Massawa, where they had sought assistance after one vessel was distressed while off the Eritrean coast. To date, neither vessels nor crew have been released. In December 2010, a British ship attempting to refuel in Massawa was detained by Eritrean authorities, and its crew of four was held without consular access for six months before being released. There are reports of additional vessels carrying nationals from other countries being detained for several months. In nearly all cases, the Eritrean government has neither given a reason for detention nor granted consular access. The port of Assab is closed to private marine vessels.

In August 2011, three separate incidents of piracy were reported off the Eritrean coast near the port of Assab. High-speed skiffs with armed persons on board continue to attack merchant vessels. If transit around the Horn of Africa is necessary, vessels should travel in convoys, maintain good communications contact at all times, and follow the guidance provided by the Maritime Security Center -- Horn of Africa (MSC-HOA). U.S. citizens should consult the Maritime Administration's Horn of Africa Piracy page for information on maritime advisories, self-protection measures, and naval forces in the region.

Landmines and unexploded ordnance remain a serious problem throughout the country. There are reports of accidents and incidents in which vehicles or people occasionally detonate mines. Many detonations occurred on relatively well-traveled roads in and near the Gash Barka region of western Eritrea; subsequent investigations indicated that several mines were recently laid. In September 2011, press reported that a vehicle in Senafe, 60 miles south of Asmara, ran over a landmine; five people were killed and another 34 injured in the incident. Vast areas of the country still have not been certified free of mines and unexploded ordnance following the 30-year war for independence and the subsequent 1998-2000 conflict with Ethiopia. You should avoid walking alone and hiking in riverbeds or areas that local government officials have not certified as safe.

U.S. citizens choosing to travel to Eritrea despite this Travel Warning must obtain an Eritrean visa before their arrival. Persons arriving in Eritrea without a visa are generally refused admission and returned on the next flight back to their point of origin. However, the Embassy is aware of persons being jailed for several months after arriving without a visa. The Embassy urges Eritrean-U.S. dual citizens to obtain an Eritrean visa in their U.S. passport before travelling to Eritrea and to enter the country as U.S. citizens. Eritrean-U.S. dual citizens who enter Eritrea with an Eritrean ID card may find it difficult to obtain the required visa to legally exit the country. The Embassy is aware of numerous cases where dual Eritrean-U.S. citizens have not been permitted to leave the country. The Embassy cautions travelers not to stay beyond the period of time granted at the time of admission by Eritrean Immigration.

Crime in Asmara has increased as a result of deteriorating economic conditions accompanied by persistent food, water, and fuel shortages, and rapid price inflation. The combination of forced, open-ended, low-paying, national service for many Eritreans and severe unemployment leads some Eritreans to commit crime to support their families. Eritrean authorities have limited capacity to deter or investigate crime or prosecute perpetrators.

Modern telecommunications options are limited in Eritrea and cannot be counted upon in an emergency. International cell phone service plans do not work on Eritrean networks. Local cellular phone service is tightly controlled by the Eritrean government and difficult to obtain. When available, international cell phone calls are extremely expensive and only available using pre-paid minutes. Internet cafes are rare and hours are limited. Internet service is limited and slow, and generally does not support Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services such as Skype.

The U.S. Embassy in Asmara strongly encourages U.S. citizens who travel to or remain in Eritrea despite this Travel Warning to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)so you can receive the most up-to-date security information. Please keep all of your information in STEP current. It is important when enrolling or updating information to include multiple phone numbers and email addresses to facilitate communication in the event of an emergency.

The consular section of the U.S. Embassy in Asmara, though closed for most visa services, is open for all U.S. citizen services between the hours of 2:00 pm and 4:00 pm Monday through Thursday, or by appointment. The U.S. Embassy in Asmara is located at 179 Alaa Street, P.O. Box 211, Asmara; telephone 291-1- 12-00-04, available 24 hours in case of emergency; fax 291-1-124-255 and 291-1-127-584.

Current information on safety and security can also be obtained by calling 1-888-407-4747 toll-free in the United States and Canada or, a regular toll line at-1-202-501-4444 for callers from other countries. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays). You can also stay up to date by bookmarking our Bureau of Consular Affairs website, which contains the current Worldwide Caution. Follow us on Twitter and the Bureau of Consular Affairs page on Facebook, and download our free Smart Traveler I-Phone App to have travel information at your fingertips. 

Saturday, April 21, 2012

African migrants flood Israel after perilous treks | Reuters

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Hrity, a migrant from Eritrea, covers her face as she poses for a photograph in the central city of Lod, near Tel Aviv April 9, 2012. REUTERS-Nir Elias
JERUSALEM | Fri Apr 20, 2012 9:13am EDT
African migrants wait at a clinic which offers free health care services in Tel Aviv February 22, 2012. REUTERS-Nir Elias
(Reuters) - Hrity spent three months chained to half a dozen people on a basement floor, beaten with sticks and chains that gave off electric shocks, on a ration of just a spoonful of rice a day.
Now in Israel, the 26-year-old migrant from Eritrea said she was freed only after a $30,000 ransom was delivered in cash to Israeli accomplices of her Bedouin Arab captors.
"I can't believe I survived it all. I still feel very weak and dizzy just standing sometimes," she said, telling the story of her captivity and journey across Egypt's Sinai desert, translated by her cousin Teklezghi, also a migrant in Israel, who borrowed from her parents and friends to pay for her freedom.
Some 60,000 African migrants fleeing authoritarian rule in Eritrea and fighting in neighboring Sudan and what is now South Sudan have crossed illegally into Israel across the relatively porous desert border with Egypt.
Half of them arrived in the past two years - more than 3,500 since January alone - and growing numbers of homeless migrants are camped out in Israeli city parks. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed "to stop this flood we are all witnessing".
Hrity is settled for the moment with Teklezghi in rented quarters in Jerusalem's walled Old City, but her flight for safety may not be over.
The influx of African migrants has fed into a larger Israeli concern about maintaining a Jewish majority population, an issue which has led to policies that limit eligibility for citizenship in Israel. Jewish immigrants are automatically given citizenship but that option is not open to most African migrants.
Some of the thousands of laborers imported from Asia and Latin America to work in the agriculture sector or caring for the elderly and infirm have also been denied permanent residence or citizenship, even for family members born in Israel.
Since January, Israeli law has been amended further to punish migrants caught entering illegally with up to three years in jail. A detention centre near the Egyptian border is being enlarged to accommodate thousands more inmates.
"These people aren't refugees, they are first and foremost infiltrators to Israel," said Yossi Edelstein, a senior Interior Ministry official, reflecting Israel's official view.
"INFILTRATORS"
Israel is not the first choice of destinations for many African migrants. Most head to the country because it can be reached overland and because European countries have become more strict about letting asylum-seekers in, Edelstein said in an interview.
The recent fighting in Libya and cases of treacherous seas claiming African victims travelling on rickety boats have exacerbated the situation and encouraged even more to flee toward Egypt and finally wind up in Israel.
Israeli humanitarian aid groups, some with help from local authorities and the U.N. refugee agency, UNHCR, have opened soup kitchens and shelters to accommodate the most dire cases, especially women with infants and small children.
"We are on the verge of collapse from the demand," said Tamar Schwartz, director of Mesila, a Tel Aviv aid group.
Physicians for Human Rights operates a clinic in the southern reaches of Tel Aviv where many migrants congregate. Many migrant women seek abortions after having been raped during their trek, and some are treated for gunshot wounds suffered on their journeys, officials at the clinic said.
Edelstein said Israel was trying to stop the illegal influx -- a fortified fence is under construction along its Sinai border with Egypt to keep out the migrants as well as armed infiltrators -- and says it is trying to find places where African migrants could be deported safely.
So far about 1,000 Sudanese, offered $1,000 apiece, have agreed to leave Israel voluntarily, Edelstein said.
Israel had planned to seek the repatriation of some hundreds of South Sudanese, but may put those plans on hold given the latest fighting between that country and neighboring Sudan, with whom it split just last year.
In response to legal challenges from human rights groups, the Israeli government has pledged to its Supreme Court that it will not punish employers who hire African migrants. The promise effectively allows the migrants to work, but only on temporary visas, not formal work permits, and only pending further policy decisions.
An Israeli legislative committee session on the issue recently discussed the possibility of Israel permitting migrant workers to replace imported labor from abroad, though immigration officials insist they would not agree to such a move.
Parliament speaker Reuven Rivlin, a member of Netanyahu's right-wing Likud party, thought Israel had a "sacred obligation" to help displaced people given that it was founded as a haven for Jews after centuries of persecution, minutes of that meeting show.
"We are a people that knows to respect a person fleeing his country for fear of his life," Rivlin said.
But he added the swelling numbers of migrants posed a "strategic" problem for Israel, and urged steps to ensure "these people seeking political asylum are rescued, but that this doesn't involve a chance for them to seek Israeli citizenship".
LOOKING FOR A WAY OUT
When Hrity left Eritrea in July 2010, she had no clear destination in mind but was vaguely considering Europe.
She travelled to neighboring Sudan, where she paid $1,000 to pay off a gang that threatened her with rape, and then went on to Khartoum. Later she tried to flee to Juba, the capital of South Sudan, but she said Bedouin Arabs abducted her en route and took her to the Sinai.
"I wanted to go to Europe but I was taken to Sinai. I didn't want to come to Israel," Hrity said in an interview, asking that her last name not be used.
She said she was kept in a basement with other women and children, and that she was sometimes forced along with the other women to undress before being beaten.
During three months in captivity, she was branded with metal rods or tied to a pole, she said. Her captors also beat the bottoms of her feet and forced her to phone her cousin Teklezghi in Jerusalem so he could hear her screams.
Human rights activists in Israel have taken similar testimony from other women migrants.
It took Teklezghi several weeks to raise her ransom. Her parents sold their home in Eritrea for about $10,000 and he borrowed the rest from fellow migrants in Israel.
Israeli police have arrested a suspect who has been identified by Teklezghi and other migrants as the man who took the cash from them so their relatives in Sinai could go free.
The suspect, an Israeli Arab, has since been charged with extorting tens of thousands of dollars in ransom for Hrity and other Eritrean nationals and transferring the money to their captors in Egypt.
Court papers called the suspect a "main link" in a suspected criminal gang also alleged to be based in Palestinian territory.
Several weeks after her experiences, Hrity seems too dazed to think about the future.
She works day jobs, wrapping sandwiches at an eatery and cleaning homes, hoping to make enough money to repay her ransom debt to her family and friends.
"I don't know how I could ever repay them all, even if I work for 10 years," she said.
(Editing by Jeffrey Heller and Sonya Hepinstall)