Eritrean Opposition Organizations: New Push Towards Alliance Print E-mail
By's Gedab News - Jan 21, 2008   

Eleven Eritrean opposition organizations who make up the Eritrean Democratic Alliance, or EDA, adjourned their 5-day meeting in Addis Abeba, Ethiopia, agreeing to admit two more opposition groups and to hold an expedited congress by March 30, 2008.

The two additional opposition groups whose admittance has been accepted are the Eritrean People’s Movement, EPM, which is led by Mr. Adhanom Gebremariam and the Islamic Congress Party, a group led by Mr. Hassen Salman, who is also known as Abul Bera’a.

The EDA has re-stated its policy that membership is open to any Eritrean organization which has already held a congress and has a recognized leadership.

The umbrella group decided that the Secretariat which managed the meeting between January 15 and January 19 would continue to hold leadership position until the March 30 congress.

The three-man Secretariat is made up of Mr. Hussein Khelifa (ELF: Eritrean Liberation Front), Mr. Mengesteab Asmerom (ELF-RC: Eritrean Liberation Front-Revolutionary Council) and Mr. Nur Idris (Eritrean Nahda Party.)

Reached by telephone, Mr. Hussein Khelifa expressed his satisfaction with the decisions taken by the EDA, as well as his hope for the success of the upcoming congress.

After the meeting was concluded, the EDA delegation met with Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi on Saturday, January 19, who congratulated them on their successful meeting.

Meanwhile, explains the Eritrean Democratic Party (EDP) in a press release its website issued, the party’s chairman, Mr. Mesfin Hagos, met with Dr. Jandaye Frazier and Mr. Jeff Krilla on January 14, 2008. Ms. Frazier is US Asst Secretary of State and Mr Krilla is Deputy Assistant Secretary, Bureau of Democracy and Human Rights and the Office of International Religious Freedom.


The Eritrean Democratic Alliance (EDA) is currently made up of eleven political organizations.  The names of the organizations, and their leadership, is as follows:

Democratic Movement for the Liberation of Eritrean Kunama – led by Mr. Qernelios Osman
Eritrean Democratic Party – led by Mr. Mesfin Hagos
Eritrean Federal Democratic Movement- led by Mr. Beshir Ishaq
Eritrean Islamic Islah Movement – led by Mr. Khelil Amer
Eritrean Liberation Front – led Mr. Hussein Khelifa
Eritrean Liberation Front – Revolutionary Council- led by Mr. Weldeyesus Ammar
Eritrean Nahda Party – led by Mr. Nur Idris
Eritrean National Salvation Front – led by Mr. Abdella Adem
Eritrean Popular Congress- led by Mr. Taher Shengeb
Eritrean Popular Democratic Front – led by Mr. Tewelde Gebreselasse
Red Sea Affar Democratic Organization – led by Mr. Ibrahim Haroun 

In February 2007, the EDA held its-much anticipated congress.  Although it successfully overcame challenges then seen as formidable—modifying its charter and the issue of proportional representation—it was not able to reach a consensus on its leadership and, consequently, split into two voting blocs. For nearly a year, the member organizations had been holding bilateral meetings to repair the damage which the EDA now describes in its press release as “a dangerous and negative political event” which had “caused confusion and mistrust among Eritrean forces and hurt the morale of the people.”

The member organizations of the EDA were under intense pressure from their grassroots members and sympathizers to overcome their differences and form a working alliance.
< Prev   Next >
[ Back ]