Visit the new AsenaTv Website

Interview with Dr. Yosuf Berhanu, Executive Chairman of the Eritrean Democratic Assembly – Part 2

On Diplomacy and Foreign Relations Michael Abraha:      The UN Security Council has levied enhanced second round of sanctions on the defiant Erirean regime.  What impact will this have as a deterrent? Dr. Yosuf Berhanu:            This is an important step

On Diplomacy and Foreign Relations

Michael Abraha:      The UN Security Council has levied enhanced second round of sanctions on the defiant Erirean regime.  What impact will this have as a deterrent?

Dr. Yosuf Berhanu:            This is an important step not only for the Eritrean people but also for the neighboring countries. The regime in Eritrea is creating havoc throughout the Horn of Africa Region. It is interfering in the internal affairs of Somalia, Djibouti, Sudan, Ethiopia and Yemen.  Its war with Ethiopia over a decade ago resulted in the loss of life of tens of thousands of youngsters.  It is indeed a disaster.  And this is a reflection of one thing: you cannot be a dictator and a despot inside Eritrea and be democratic and peace-loving externally. This is not possible. That is the ugly nature of the regime in Eritrea. Isaias is treating the neighboring countries the same way he is treating his own people.

Q:        So you are saying the UN action was fitting and timely?

A:        Yes, I hail it although it came a little bit late.  The sanctions are very important from one point of view: The Eritrean government is now completely isolated from the rest of the world. And in my opinion the UN action is vital as a deterrent and is supportive of the plans and objectives of the Eritrean democratic movement. It is essential for us to take this opportunity to further isolate the regime and intensify the struggle until it is removed and replaced by a democratic system.

Q:        Apart from these UN sanctions what kind of support are you looking for from the international community – the European Union, IGAD, US and others?

A:        Well, we have to first gain political recognition before speaking of assistance. It has been disappointing so far because political organizations have been acting separately. There was utter lack of coordination among them. But this time after the successful conclusion of the National Congress in Hawassa, Ethiopia, we have created a new outlook. We can now approach the United States, the European Union, European, and African and Arab countries to of course first ask for recognition and eventually urge them for their economic support for our struggle and for our people. I may say we are now on the right track.

Q:        How do you characterize Ethiopia’s role and support for your plans?

A:        The support we are getting from the Ethiopian government is a genuine support. And this is due to one major factor: We as Eritreans want to get rid of the current system in our country; the Ethiopian government and the Ethiopian people also have the same interest and want to get rid of the dictatorship as well because they are also suffering from the negative attitude and hostile and violent actions of the Isaias regime. It is working to destabilize the internal situation in Ethiopia, Djibouti and other countries in the Horn. That is why I salute the Ethiopian support. And thanks to that support 600 of us Eritreans convened in Hawassa last month coming from all corners of the world and representing all Eritrean society to discuss our internal and national problems without any interference from the Ethiopian government.

Q:        What lessons can be learned from the uprisings in North Africa and the Middle East?

A:        Nothing can be more inspiring and more encouraging for the Eritrean people and the youngsters in particular than the experiences unfolding in Libya, Syria, Egypt, Tunisia and Yemen. After twenty, thirty, forty years of suffering, the people there at last decided to shed their fears paying all the sacrifices needed to topple tyrant after tyrant until they became masters of their own destinies. Eritreans can and should act in a similar way, and speak out and come out and hasten the end of the dictatorship in our country.

Review overview
  • yasin December 28, 2011

    Thumbs Up Doctor and hopefully the suffering of our people will soon end!!!

  • gasha December 28, 2011

    you may delete my messages but the oppostion millitary will never ever step an inch inside Eritrea let along win.

  • gasha December 28, 2011

    long live shaebia!

  • Tesfa Bahta December 28, 2011

    Mr Gasha,
    I am not sure if “oppostion millitary will never ever step an inch inside Eritrea ” , but the man is speaking the truth. Go..Go..Dr Yesuf and hope you will succeed.
    may let our people live in peace.

  • Ahmed saleh December 28, 2011

    I appreciate Dr. Yousuf on his ability to connect with his people through web sites and I
    would expect him to do so regularly. When people loud for their right, the leadership must
    listen, show solidarity and guidance for positive outcome to assure awareness and unity.
    People support is the main core on strengthening their influence inside and outside the
    Country. Learning from our past experience they should wise enough to detour a situation
    that looks heading down to a similar road. At the same time it is essential to maneuver the
    Circumstances to our liking to broaden our horizon with out thinking conservatively which is
    no longer beneficial to our society. Let me say to these new leadership ” stay truthful ,
    encouraged and remain realistic about our expectation”. Progress is made when we only
    come with spirit of good-will and above all when reluctance of failure is absent.
    May Allah/God give you wisdom and lead you to righteous judgement.
    May Allah/God end my people misery and bring peace, tranquility and forgive our sins.

    • Ahmed saleh December 28, 2011

      My special thanks to Hawna Amanuel Iyassu and ASSENNA staff and to all contributors on this
      forum well done guys/gals.
      I hope the pain we endured because those inhuman and cruel events never repeat again GOD
      forbid. May some miracle visit Eritrea to resolve the situation this coming year, everybody
      say “INSHA-ALLAH”. Let’s not forget the weak , those walking in darkness and hopelessness.
      Remember to rise up to conquer in principle the selfishness, indifference, injustice and
      Countless other evil deeds that are destructively destroying the goodness of our people God
      given lives. Our shared Cultural value and our Faith requires us to love and respect others
      As we love to our selves.

      • December 29, 2011

        very good

        • December 29, 2011

          you guys are realy far from the the trueth. Am sure no one is going to wel come you to power. Eritrea will never ever recieve or entertain any body who ever come from Ethiopian political ideology. Just hang out in Adis abab and hibernate for a while untill you get other activation medicine from Melese Zenawi. But Trust me the dectator will be out of the power pretty soon. God bless eritrea.

  • ምሕረቱ ሃብተ December 28, 2011

    “ንኣድጊ፣ ሓሰር እምበር-መዓር ኣይውሓጠላን”

    ውሃ´ነ ገልዳም ተዓዊቱለይ
    ህግደፍ ሓድሽ ስም ኣውጺኦምለይ
    ህዝበ ትግርኛ ተብሂለ፣ ዘይሓረኽዎ ባዕለይ
    ትግራዋይ ከይብሃል ድዮም ሓልዮምለይ
    ኣይደለዩንን ክኸውን ሓው እንድርታ ዘመድ ዓጋመታይ
    መንነቱ ዝጸልኤ፣ ንባዕዳውያን ዝብል እምበይተይ፣ጎይታይ
    ተረፍ ጣልያን፣ ሙታንታ ኣዕራብ፣ሮማን ጅዳን ተመጽዋተይ
    condom ግብጺ፣ ኣብ ብላሽ መዋታይ
    ሲንጋፖር´የ ወዲ ኣስያ ታሕታይ
    Lasagna,spaghetti ይበላዕ ኣብ ቋሬጣይ
    እንጀራን ሽልጆን ኣይተምጽኡ ኣብ ገበታይ
    ትግራዋይ ከይብሃል ፣ ሕብኡለይ መንነተይ !!!
    ንባዕልና ትግራውነትና/መንነትና እናሓባእናስ፣ ንጀበርቲን፣ መታሕት ኣሕዋትናን፣ ብብሄርነትን፣ ብቛንቋን ክንሰብከሎም መሕነኸና !!!!

  • Kaglighe December 28, 2011

    “ህዝበ ትግርኛ ተብሂለ፣ ዘይሓረኽዎ ባዕለይ
    ትግራዋይ ከይብሃል ድዮም ሓልዮምለይ”

    ምሕረቱ ሃብተ

    In Eritrea, different groups are named according to their language: a Bilen speaks Bilen, a Saho speaks Saho, a Tigre speaks Tigre .. in the same way a Tigrigna speaker is Tigrigna (the latter, even though
    used in recent times, it feets an into an existing naming system common in Eritrea). This is not unique to Eritrea, it’s common to call people according to the name of their language. The Amahara speak Amaharic, the Afars speak Afar ..etc. so, why do you think Tigrigna speakers in Eritrea should be named Tigray ?. Residents of Tigray prefer to be called after the name of the region they
    live in and Tigrigna speaking Eritreans see no good reason to call themselves Tigray.
    Their choice is the most natural and should not be politicized, unless you have some ulterior motives to do so.

    • MEHRETU HABTE December 30, 2011

      When I asked my son ,where does milk come from ? He answered from FRIDGE .With all due respect ,coincidental rymes do not change history. If by ulterior motive ,to take back Eritrea to Ethiopia, I am totally opposed to that. I WOULD NOT WISH THAT CURSE TO ETHIOPIANS ,THEY HAVE PEACE ,RELATIVELY BASIC RIGHTS & TO IMPOSE ERITREA ON THEM WOULD BE TO PUNISH THEM. Please base your argument on historical facts .Not on kindergarden coincidental rymes .TELLING YOU, YOU ARE YOUR MOM´S & DAD´S SON IS NOT ULTERIOR MOTIVE:JUST FACT
      Happy new year

      • gasha December 30, 2011

        remember memhir yenesaw from Ethiopia you telling us he burn himself for no reason. is the child adaption, gay right, genoside, starvation inside addiss abeba, is that what you call peace.

  • Kokhob Selam December 29, 2011

    Go ahead Dr. yesuf. we the Eritrean people in and out side the country are with you.

  • Sabbahar December 29, 2011

    No Eritrean could deny that Dr. Yusuf is elected on basis of his merits and that he would lead us to success, provided that there are the right people around him. Sadly enough, most of the members of the executive body were not picked up on basis of merits the current phase of the democratic movement demands. To everybody`s shock, many were picked up either by way of quota, representing a political organization (QUOTA is a method a sectarian society like the Iraquis are unsuccessfully using today to create a balance between Sunnis, Shia and Kurds… etc), or even worst or more laughable, by way of “Echa“; a method which makes us, maybe, the first or among the pioneers in the world to employ a method too contradictory to the characters our struggle should have. (TO BE CONTINUED)

  • Sabbahar December 29, 2011

    We may not need to elect members of the National Assembly on basis of merits because the makeup should look like LITTLE ERITREA, but an effective leadership should be recruited from among the best in terms of knowledge, skills and experience or merits. However, we wish the National Assembly all the best and we should be ready to support it, while warning the bad guys in the executive body that the Eritrean people are watching them with concern and will drag them out of the executive body, in case they try to be an obstacle in one way or another.