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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Old Problems in New Conflicts: Some Observations on Eritrea and its Relations with Tigraym from Liberation Struggle to Inter-State War
Author:Reid, RichardISNI
Periodical:Africa: Journal of the International African Institute
Geographic terms:Ethiopia
Subjects:national liberation struggles
Eritrean People's Liberation Front
Tigray People's Liberation Front
Inter-African Relations
History and Exploration
External link:https://www.jstor.org/stable/3556909
Abstract:This article examines the problematic relationship between Eritrea and Tigray as represented by the Eritrean and Tigray Peoples' Liberation Fronts. The EPLF won independence for Eritrea in 1991, at the same time as the TPLF seized power in Ethiopia; the two movements had had a difficult relationship, beginning in the mid-1970s, during their respective armed struggles, and the issues which had caused disagreement remained unresolved as the movements made the transition to government. The article examines the nature of those issues and the degree to which the war of 1998-2000 between the two countries can be seen to have reflected much older tensions and indeed contradictions in the Eritrean-Tigrayan/Ethiopian relationship. Thus, the article begins with an overview of Eritrean opinion, during the recent war, about the relationship in question, and then moves back in time to the era of the liberation struggle. Here, the author explains the complexities of the respective Eritrean and Tigrayan revolutions insofar as each impinged on and influenced the other, with particular reference to the issues of frontiers, nationality and ethnicity, and sovereignty. The article also considers the apparent paradoxes in the perceptions which Eritreans have of Tigray and Ethiopia, and suggests that changes in attitude are necessary on both sides of the Mereb river border if the relationship is not to be defined by perpetual confrontation. App., bibliogr., sum. in English and French. [Journal abstract]