US State Department: Eritrea backs Horn of Africa terrorism

In its annual human rights country report, released March 11, the US State Department accuses Eritrea of systematically abusing human rights, as well as sponsoring terrorism in the Horn of Africa region, and acting as a source and conduit for arms to insurgents in Somalia. The report charges the Asmara government oversaw unlawful killings by its security forces last year; used arbitrary arrests, beatings and torture against opposition supporters; and severely restricted freedom of speech, the press, assembly, association and religion. Throughout 2009, “consistent and systemic gross human rights violations persisted unabated at the government’s behest,” the report said.

Citing a June report by the UN Munitions Monitoring Group, the report portrayed the Red Sea state as a destabilizing influence in the Horn of Africa. “The government acted as a principal source and conduit for arms to antigovernment, extremist, and insurgent groups in Somalia,” the State Department said.

Asmara says there is no concrete evidence for the claims, and charges Washington with inventing statistics and interfering in the region. Ties between the US and Eritrea have grown increasingly strained. In February, the US embassy in Asmara suspended its consular services and last week issued a travel warning for Eritrea. Asmara responded by accusing Washington of trying to create chaos in the country. Asmara has still not officially recognized the US ambassador, and the country’s state-controlled media are running a sustained campaign against what they call a US intervention drive. (AP, March 12)

The report was released amid a new flare-up of the fighting in Somalia, with at least 50 killed this week in Mogadishu and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees reporting that more than 100,000 Somali civilians have been forced to flee their homes across the country since the beginning of the year. (VOA, March 12)

In Washington, the State Department organized a “special briefing” with reporters March 12 to address recent media reports that suggested US forces are offering on-the-ground assistance to the transitional Somali government. “This is not an American conflict,” assistant secretary Johnnie Carson told reporters. “It will be up to the Somalis to ultimately resolve this conflict.”

Carson said the US government has not and “will not” be providing “direct support” for either a military offensive “that is apparently under way now” or “any potential military offensives” in Somalia. He added that the US government has not received any “formal or informal” requests from the Somali government for any kind of assistance, including “air support.” (Fox News, March 12)

See our last post on Eritrea, Somalia and the Horn of Africa.

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      1. The Title of this article is disingenuous
        Your title reads this: “US State Department: Eritrea backs Horn of Africa terrorism”….that really gives those headlines searchers a real understanding of the matters in Horn? huh So when someone searches for Eritrea on Google , they will read your headline which reinforces an idea about Eritrea which is False.

        Eritrea does NOT back terrorism of any sort. However, your title will reinforce that idea. Wondering if World War 4 Report is part of the solution or part of the problem.

        1. What the hell is “disingenuous” about it?
          That’s what the State Department said. You don’t like it? Take it up with the State Department. My job is just to report. Do you really think what the State Department says about Eritrea is not worthy of note?

  1. US State Department is LYING as usual
    The US State Department is lying as usual. It constantly harasses smaller nations which don’t agree with their “policies”!

    If the UN stands for anything..then the US State Department’s Human Rights report is Meaningless because its not a NEUTRAL THIRD PARTY Source.

    Btw, the UN is NO LONGER (Or HAs Ever Been) a NEUTRAL THIRD PARTY Source for information either.

    The American People need to put their State Department, CIA, Pentagon ..in CHECK! Since those organizations are supposedly under “civilian authority”.

    President Obama was supposed to be about “change”..but Obama is using MORe of the SAME, Nothing new here President b.Hussein. o!

    The US Foreign Policy is based on corporate interests and global financial organizational interests..NOT the INterests of the AMERICAN PEople.

    So I can see why a Country like Eritrea is targeted. It’s apparent that it doesn’t play along with the global financial terrorists in the Switzerland, in London, the Rothschilds, the Bilderberg Group.

    These Sanctions were authored by the Bilderberg Group in Brussels…they brought clearly biased and ill-intentioned individuals with unsavory and quite horrendous backgrounds to give “neutral, first person account”.

    I’ll give some of the individuals that attended that Brussels summit which gives a “fact” to this so-called US State Department “Human Rights” Report.

    Selam Kidane attended, this woman is from Ethiopia and is of Ethiopian origin but claims to be “Eritrean” and gives a lipservice and sheds crocodile tears for “human rights” in Eritrea.

    You can find her in a BBC article where she is clearly from Ethiopia. She claims “Eritrean” origin but her husband is an Ex-DERGUE (The Military Junta that terrorized and massmurdered several 100s of thousands of Ethiopians and ERitreans from 1974-1991). Her father was a Dergue Official in Addis Ababa. So honestly, she has no platform to speak but apparently for the US state departments goal of DEMONIZING and VILLIFYING ERitrea, they use a person of her troublesome background.

    WORLD WAR 4 Report…If you seek to stop World War 4 from happening then the ILLEGAL ACTIONS of the US Should be Reported HERE as well and not just their “opinion” on other nations such as Eritrea.

        1. “US accused of trying to destabilise Eritrea “
          Yes, we know. The Reuters article you link to says nothing not in the AP story we cited above.

          Let’s see, information about the Bilderberg Group “is quite difficult to come by” due to their secrecy, yet a “study of the news on world events over the past 50 years” reveals their “fingerprints”? I suggest you Google “magical thinking.”

        2. eritrea’s mad man
          I just came from Eritrea a few days ago and I witnessed horror, extreme poverty and an imaginable oppression. I feel sorry for the people of Eritrea.
          This mad man who is ruling the country must be stopped. He should be charged as a war criminal. I can’t believe people are defending this criminal government.
          People are fleeing the country to escape from hopelessness, hunger and torture.

          Please pray for Eritrea

  2. God Bless America!!!!!
    God Bless America!!!!!

    As an Eritrean I fully support the state dept. report on Eritrea. I think everybody knows who eritrean dictator is. The sistuation in eritrea is getting worst. US should punish the eritrean dictator who is supporting al shabab.

    1. God Bless Eritrea!!!!!
      God Bless Eritrea!!!!

      No Eritrea should not get punished nor should the President of Eritrea get punished either.

      Eritrea and the President of Eritrea does Not support nor is associated with any terrorist organizations.

      Sami, by calling yourself “Eritrean” before you went on your rant about punishing Eritrea, that is quite pitiful that you would stoop to this level. But, you made a claim that has no evidence nor proof.

      The problem with your statement is that you thought calling yourself “Eritrean” would somehow give it legitimacy, it doesn’t. Infact, I am wondering how do you know who are or what is connected to Al Shabab, are you in arrangements with them?

      1. Pray for Eritrea
        I just came from Eritrea a few days ago and I witnessed horror, extreme poverty and an imaginable oppression. I feel sorry for the people of Eritrea.
        This mad man who is ruling the country must be stopped. He should be charged as a war criminal. I can’t believe people are defending this criminal government.
        People are fleeing the country to escape from hopelessness, hunger and torture.

        Please pray for Eritrea

    2. God Bless Eritrea!!!!!
      God Bless Eritrea!!!!!

      As an American I fully support Eritrea’s principled position on issues in the Horn. I think everybody knows that the US State Department presents lies as “facts”. The situation in Ethiopia is getting worst so the US State department is looking for a scapegoat. The US should be ashamed of itself for picking on smaller developing nations and stop feeding the military of Ethiopia’s dictatorial tyrant Meles Zenawi.

      The US State Department and US Government in general should push Ethiopia to implement the EEBC Algiers Agreements that Meles Zenawi, Seyoum Mesfin signed by demarcating the border between Eritrea and Ethiopia.
      The US should put pressure on Meles Zenawi/Seyoum Mesfin Ethiopian government to stop occupying Eritrean territory of which Badme is legally.

    3. You are not ever African
      You can’t be an African and support what is happening to Africa. I am not putting all the blame on others but you are not Eritrean or African OR this is your night time job. If you are Eritrea it is your job to talk with your brothers and sisters and find a solution if there is any not out source the problem to others to fix it for you. That is not how they build America and that is not how it going to be done in Eritrea too.

  3. End the violence
    What Eritrea’s dictator is trying to be is a peace-broker while arming terrorists to the hilt and abusing his 5 million people. All because of a piece of worthless 150 sq. miles called Badime. Plunging the entire region into misery just because he didn’t get the 150 sq. miles. Why not get this bastard and drag him to the Hague? You wouldn’t have to worry about Shabab or Janjaweed after that.

    The point is: you can’t run with the rabbit and hunt with the hound, you’ve got to make a choice.

    1. Ethiopia needs to stop occupying Badme, Eritrea
      Ethiopia’s occupation of Badme, Eritrea and the continuous funding Ethiopia receives from the US government via military and economical AID is what keeps the conflict brewing with this No Peace No War.

      Eritrea maintaining it’s army is its God-given Right and regardless of any crocodile tears that some people shed, it doesn’t change the fact that Ethiopia under Meles Zenawi are illegally occupying Eritrean territory and the US (which is a Guarantor of the Algiers Agreement) is violating the Algiers Agreement by not forcing Ethiopia to abide by the agreement.

      With this being the situation, the US State Department nor the US has any moral or legal grounds to accuse Eritrea or the Eritrean government of any wrongdoing.

      In a house of thieves, the top thief is still a thief.

      1. Who said so,
        1st- I am not sure why the US is putting all this blamming on Erirea, I am not sure what the American people will get here (with the exception of the a few).
        2nd- How came the US blame Eritrea for supporting some group in Somalia while the EthiopiaUSUK are doing it themselves.
        3rd- Whoever is praying for Eritrean people need to get a life – since we don’t need no praying from Eritrean wanted to be individuals – we need individuals that workd not talk. For you and me to live here comfortably the American people worked so hard to put this country where it is now. So I tell himher to get a life and to stop spreading lies and hate if you are true African.
        4th – I think the American people will benefit more if there is peace in the horn of African than what is going right now, So I am not sure why the USUKUN is engulfing the horn on Fire.
        5th – UN – it is time to start enforcing what you stand for instead becoming meaningless organization year after year. UN – stand for justice.
        6th – I am not sure what happen to journalize and ethics — it just become cut and paste job and a tools for powerful nationsindividuals to past whatever information they wanted. Journalize – do your job. Reporting is not cut and paste job. It has to be fair, researched and must hold water. Why not ask a question, pose a question for the state department to answer, they can keep going around and putting lies everywhere. WW4report – I understand your position but some how some way your reporting has to be balanced.