Table of Contents
Isaias Afwerki was born in the Asmara region of Eritrea on February 2, 1946. He was raised in the village of Tselot, located in the country’s northern region. Afwerki’s parents were both farmers, and he grew up in a modest household with six siblings.
Afwerki attended the Prince Makonnen High School in Asmara, where he excelled academically. After completing his secondary education, he went on to study engineering at the University of Addis Ababa in Ethiopia.
Career and Achievements
In the early 1970s, Afwerki became involved in the Eritrean Liberation Front (ELF), a rebel group fighting for independence from Ethiopia. He quickly rose through the ranks and became one of the group’s top leaders.
After the ELF split in 1974, Afwerki co-founded the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front (EPLF) and became the group’s secretary-general. Under his leadership, the EPLF became the dominant rebel force in the struggle for Eritrean independence.
In 1993, Eritrea gained independence from Ethiopia, and Afwerki was elected as the country’s first president. Since then, he has been re-elected four times, most recently in 2018.
Afwerki’s government has been criticized for its human rights record, including the suppression of political opposition and the media. However, he is widely credited with leading Eritrea to independence and maintaining its sovereignty in the face of external pressures.
Afwerki is known to be a private individual and little is known about his personal life. He is married and has three children.
Afwerki’s net worth is difficult to estimate as he does not publicly disclose his finances. However, it is rumored that he has significant assets including several properties in Eritrea and abroad, as well as a collection of luxury vehicles.
Awards and Nominations
Afwerki has been the recipient of several awards in recognition of his role in Eritrea’s independence, including the Jawaharlal Nehru Award for International Understanding and the Independence Order from the government of Malta. However, he has also faced criticism from human rights organizations for his government’s record in the areas of press freedom and political dissent.
In conclusion, Isaias Afwerki is a controversial figure, admired by some for his leadership role in Eritrea’s struggle for independence and criticized by others for his handling of human rights and political dissent. Regardless of one’s stance on his political record, Afwerki has undoubtedly left a significant mark on Eritrean history and politics.