Ethiopian rebels to release Kidnapped Germans, deny Eritrean role

A rebel group has promised the release of two German nationals who were kidnapped in the Afar region of Ethiopia last week when a group of European tourists were attacked, killing five of them. The rebel

A rebel group has promised the release of two German nationals who were kidnapped in the Afar region of Ethiopia last week when a group of European tourists were attacked, killing five of them.

The rebel group, Afar Revolutionary Democratic Unity Front (ARDUF), in its first ever statement, at the weekend confirmed that they were holding the two Germans adding that the abducted Europeans were being treated well.

The group said it will release the Germans after negotiations with Afar ethnic elders, but stopped short of giving details on the exact date of release.

Two Germans, two Hungarians and an Austrian were killed in an attack on tourists last week in the Afar region of Ethiopia, close to Eritrea.

Tensions rose when Ethiopia suggested that the insurgents had been trained and armed by Eritrea and warned that “Ethiopia has the right to defend itself and will do so if necessary”.

The Horn of Africa country also called on the international community to “assume its responsibilities and take the necessary steps to bring this abominable behaviour to an end”. It also said that it was “not too late for international action”.

But the front has denied any involvement of the Eritrean government, saying that the tourists were killed after Ethiopian troops started attacking ARDUF’s patrols. Eritrea is under United Nations sanctions for supporting Somali rebel group, al-Shabaab.

A total of 27 international tourists were attacked as they toured the famous lava lakes of the volcanic Afar region.

ARDUF says it is fighting for the rights of the Afar ethnic group, which it says is marginalised by the Ethiopian government.

A few years ago, the front kidnapped European tourists who were later released in Asmara, Eritrea.

Ethiopia said after last week’s attacks that insurgents had taken the two Germans and their two Ethiopian assistants to Eritrea.

The German embassy in Addis Ababa is working with the concerned officials for the release of the kidnapped Germans. Ethiopian officials have refused to give any details pertaining to the hostage situation to the media.

Relations between the two countries deteriorated after a border dispute, about a decade ago leading to a “No peace, No war” situation.

The Africa Report

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8 COMMENTS
  • Gebre January 24, 2012

    a decade is enough for Isaias Afeworki to raise up some young men and women to be died in a war initiated by him. He is not also short of war propagandists to mobilise people to his war effort. For the last decade, he has no war appitite due to his defeat he incured in the war 1998-2000. This time around, he seems to forget the bitterness of war and attempting to try his last chance of wining a war. The coud from Eritrea is bringing a sense of war in the same way to the 1998. But, fo sure, and deadly sure, he will not stand the response from Ethiopia. He needs to differentiate 1998 and 2012.

    • hggum brhan January 25, 2012

      Y DONT TELL US YOUIR DREAM.WE KNOW THEM ETHIOPIANS.NOT TO THIS TIME BUT LONG TIME AGO.ONE TO TEN TO ETHIOPIAN ARMY.AND ERITREA WIN THE WAR.NOW YOU THINK BACK TO LIFE.YOU ALLWAS DONKS AND DONKIS.ERITREA IS STROG THAN EVER.I DONT WANT TO TELL YOU THE NOMBER OF OUR ARMY BUT OLMOST DBL TO ETHIOPIAS ARMY.SO AGAME ENTEBEKIE ADGI HA HA ENTEBE TEQWEMTI WESHLEKELEKE ENTEBELE AWET KULU GIZE NATNA EU. AWET NHAFASH.

      • Gebre January 26, 2012

        Hegum, are you sure you are ready to fight in Barentu and Adiqeyih? but, as I said, this time around, these will not be the only battle fields. No one can predict where it may be, well why not Nakfa. But again, we will not fight you in the same way the Derg was fighting. This means, this war will be the end of Isayas Regime. in 1999 and 2000, you cried to NewYork and Washington, fortunately engough, this time around, no body will not interfere in this war, thanks to the behavour of your king, every body is tired. Gadafi, the God father of Isaias and Mubarek are not there to help

        • Gebre January 26, 2012

          to the issue of ratio, one for ten or 100, that is something foolish. Isaias is trying to Deceive you that you are extra ordinarily heros and he is a superhuman and he has the wisdom to solve all the problems in the world, the Middle East crissis, the economic problems in America and Europe etc… But has no wisdom to solve Eritrean problems. The problem is not the dictator, but the dictator makers like Asmelash who always to him ” your exelency you predict the situation in Somalia will not be solved …” Any way if you are one of them, please come and test the war to be one for ten.

  • David January 24, 2012

    Make sure you are not going to cry to Banking Moon. At this time around you will stand it alone. 2012 is not going to be 1998 alike. Based on the assumption of Meles is not going to do it, you are making a regrettable mistake. Dekebat Eritrea writers, you need to go to philosophy school in order to know how to analyze politics. It looks like you live in a fantasy world.

    Chaw for now

  • Yes I am Agame January 24, 2012

    ARDUF is a paper organization, just re-run by PFDJ to conduct its nasty projects. ARDUF, as they tell us, fights for the liberation of Afars from Ethiopia, Eritrea, and Djibouti with a goal to create greater Afar(ia?). By logic, ARDUF’s ideaology is against that of all these three countries. Yet it is open secret PFDJ plays ARDUF, and now the virtual ARDUF took the blame to itself sparing the bloody hands of PFDJ. Let’s say ARDUF’s claim that Ethiopian soldiers shot dead the tourists (hmmm so unlikely), but ARDUF has acknowledged kidnapping of the two tourists and is soon to release them. So, why the kidnap anyway? Kidnapping of civilians (tourists in this case) for a political purpose is a terrorist act. So ARDUF is a terrorist organization!!! But then ARDUF is fully supported by PFDJ (military ties) thus PFDJ is a terrorist gang, once more proving to itself and all of us. Now that the Weyane is contemplating to taking action against PFDJ, I am not like those who are in love with war and the news of it, but I damn hope that will be a war to end all the wars (pains)..!!!

  • Gebre January 25, 2012

    War may not be good, but it is a necessary evil i.e. we can not rule it out while it is necessary like surgery.

  • Semhar January 26, 2012

    Gaddafi is dead Isayas is next!
    – His boss (Mubarak of Egypt) is thrown out of power.
    – The international community’s talking peace and carrying big stick [sanctions] is having an effect.
    – The Eritrean people are beginning to realize that there is no point in waiting for the regime to reform itself — that it needs to be overthrow.
    This is the moment we must come together to save our land and our people.

    Let freedom ring in Akeleguzay!
    Let freedom ring in Barka!
    Let freedom ring in Denkel!
    Let freedom ring in Hamasien!
    Let freedom ring in Sahil!
    Let freedom ring in Semhar!
    Let freedom ring in Senhit!
    Let freedom ring in Seraye!

    Let freedom ring in ERITREA!

    Let freedom ring allover Eritrea!
    Let’s LIVE FREE OR DIE with dignity.
    Our martyrs did not die to crown the tyrant.
    We must reclaim our flag, our constitution, Highi Indaba, our land (our original provinces), our people,

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