Foreign tourists killed in Ethiopia

Gunmen have killed five foreign tourists in Ethiopia's remote northern Afar region, after crossing into the country from neighbouring Eritrea, an Ethiopian official said. A western diplomat said that German nationals were among those killed in

Gunmen have killed five foreign tourists in Ethiopia‘s remote northern Afar region, after crossing into the country from neighbouring Eritrea, an Ethiopian official said.

A western diplomat said that German nationals were among those killed in the shooting which happened late on Monday. He did not confirm the total number of dead.

Afar is known to be a haunt of Ethiopian rebels who regularly cross the border with Eritrea, Ethiopia’s bitter foe. Eritrean rebels and bandits also operate in the area at times.

“The group of foreign tourists was attacked by gunmen late on Monday, by members of a group that was trained and armed by the Eritrean government. It’s the usual terrorist activity by the regime,” Bereket Simon, Ethiopia’s government spokesman, said.

There was no immediate comment from the Eritrean authorities. Eritrea often says Ethiopia “fabricates” lies to tarnish its image.

Ethiopian state television said two other tourists had been seriously wounded in the attack, while another tourist had escaped unharmed.

An Ethiopian foreign ministry official, who declined to be named, said the government believed the victims were from “a number of countries, mostly from Europe”.

Addis Ababa routinely accuses Asmara of supporting a number of Ethiopian separatist groups, and blamed an Afar rebel movement for the kidnapping of five Europeans in the region in 2007.

A German foreign ministry spokesman said Berlin was working with the German embassy in Addis Ababa to clarify exactly what had happened.

The only foreigners who normally brave the inhospitable Afar region are researchers, aid workers and adventure tourists visiting geographical wonders such as the Danakil depression, one of the hottest places on earth with its ancient salt mines and volcanoes.

A German media report said the group of tourists had been close to the Erta Ale volcano, one of Ethiopia’s most active.

Germany’s foreign ministry carries a travel warning on its website alerting German nationals to banditry and other dangers in the area around the volcano.

The Europeans abducted in 2007 were later released.

Ethiopia and Eritrea fought a 1998-2000 border war that killed some 70,000 people, and the dispute still festers.

Review overview
  • mererew January 17, 2012

    Your excellency PM Meles… you and your people will never rejoice peace and tranquility if Issaias The Devil and the demons exist.This incident is one of so many, and for sure it will not be the last. I some times wonder how long is right to passover.If you determine to take action on him and his disciples, take my word …99.8% of Eritreans are on your side!!!! Just trigger the fire… and back us… we will finish it ourselves.

    The Libyan style…seme….rrrrrrrrrrrrr!

    • hggum brhan January 19, 2012

      kffut maakor rograg nhna eritrawan men msika ethiopia aiconen kalawn entekone

  • SINGAPO-ERITREAN January 17, 2012


    I second your motion ,however allow me to share with all of us my concern, and I am expressing my opinion with the Eritrean people at the core of the situations . Eritrea has never been under a free will situation. It has been emotions & hatred towards Ethiopia . I believe Ethiopia is ready to back the Eritrean opposition army . But if the opposition meetings concentrate on silly things & it is not totally their fault ,as most of us think democracy is urguing without some compromise…….if Ethiopian force outnumber the Eritrean opposition forces , Ethiopia will have to pick up the pieces..refugee situation ,possible mild civil war like skirmishes…starting a fire close to your neighbours house with out having extinguishing plan ..would not be in Ethiopia´s interest. As a “Bihere Tigrinya /kebesa/Eritrean Tigraway I do not know Afar´s or Rashida´s mentality . There needs to be a uniting force ,not like the one we have ,that is “united ” using soft glue . I hope I do not give the impression of a pessimistic…

  • SINGAPO-ERITREAN January 17, 2012

    “ዕሸላውን ዘሕንኽን ፣ ብሕርቃን ዝተጻሕፈ ግጥሚ”
    – መጠንቀቕታ፣ ነዚ ግጥሚ እዚ ከም ቁም ነገር ወሲድካ ምንባብ
    መርዘን ከምጽእ ይኽእል´ዩ !!!!!!!!!

    ኣላዶ እዛ ተረጋሚት ህበይ
    መሰረት ግራታ ባንግላዴሽ ፣ቦምበይ (Bombay)
    ነቲ ወኻርያ ኣማኻሪቱ፣መቝሰሊት ልበይ
    ኣብ ኒውዮርክ ኣጓይዮማ ኤርትራውያን ደቂ ዓደይ
    ሰበይትን ቢራኣን ጠንጢና፣ ኣውጽእኒ ኣደይ
    ከም ነቓዕ ብርለ ኣቢሎማ ቀምበይበይ
    ትዋረደላ መዓልቲ፣ ክርስርስ´ዩ ናውቲ ከብደይ !!!!!

    • hggum brhan January 19, 2012

      getimka aitkaln eka meskin!!!!!

  • Fekrawi January 18, 2012

    This is the perfect time take some action to finish once and for all the blood thirsty DIA

  • agelglot January 18, 2012

    hatsiratni ente blkus -tedebira teseEse ….waaaay guuuud pfdg what is going to say now again,if eri gov train the afar front direct or indairect they are murderers,but realy its shamfull fr u pfdg,u r blood sukers.haaay issayas u will not live fr ever u will be down more quiqer than u think.Its shame on u neither eritreans nor ethiopians got a pease becouse of u …yes u blood-sukers. but issayas u will get what ur best friend have got ..ghedafi and that is very soon.

    • hggum brhan January 19, 2012

      agame keribu eyu kwedk mehdmik um dleyu kab ethipia kulu ethiopiawe zebe kgoyekum eyu wow

  • lemlem Hadgu January 18, 2012

    What astonishes me a lot is PFDJ supporters rejoice on such atrocities committed by whomever. This is just a non-sense and is a crime against humanity-as simple as that. The goal could be to tarnish the image of arch foe Ethiopia, in their minds (if they got one). But the fact is, it is something that could backfire.
    Now that the GoEt is at cross-roads as to how to deal with this issue…Yet, imagine another catastrophic war recurs once again. Time and again, PIA and Co were proved to be a click that’s obsessed with nothing other than the smell of gun powder. And I believe every Eritrean knows well shaabiya does terrorize whoever he sees as enemy. Should the young, whose fathers paid heavy sacrifice already, be put at war fronts, again?? I wonder..

    Born from a family coming from both nations, lived in both countries within my age of 27. I feel so sorry that I had known nothing other than animosity, war, and the news of it among the two. For how long this should go on…?

  • Semhar January 19, 2012

    Death to the dictator!
    DISTROY the PFDJ the terrorist organization where ever they are.
    Eritrea will be free soon!

  • Semhar January 19, 2012

    Death to the
    #1 enemy of Eritrean people
    the terrorist organization the PFDJ.