Showing posts with label ethiopia. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ethiopia. Show all posts

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Guest Feature: Map of Control in Ethiopia's Tigray Conflict (November 18, 2020)

Today we're featuring a map created by a friend of PolGeoNow, Daniel from Passport Party, roughly illustrating territorial control in the new conflict in Ethiopia's Tigray state. For further updates to this map, follow Passport Party on Twitter.

Tigray control map: Rough illustration of territorial control in Ethiopia's Tigray war as known November 18, 2020, showing areas believed to have been captured by Ethiopian government forces as well as areas occupied along the disputed border with Eritrea.
Rough map of territorial control in Ethiopia's 2020 Tigray conflict, by Daniel of Passport Party (used with permission).

 

Ethiopia Conflict: Tigray Control Map by Passport Party

On November 4, 2020, a new armed conflict broke out between Ethiopia's central government and the government of Tigray, a regional state within Ethiopia. Details since then have been difficult to track down because of a government-imposed communications blackout in the region, and at PolGeoNow we've been too busy so far to create our own control map. 

Fortunately, our friend Daniel from Passport Party has managed to create a rough map his own, drawing from a carefully-curated network of sources with local ties, along with what scant media reports are available. Though Daniel warns that a map like this can't be completely reliable under the circumstances, this is our pick for best of the maps that we've seen.

Daniel has graciously offered us permission to feature the latest version of his map here, and for further map updates on the rapidly-changing situation, you can check the Passport Party Twitter feed. Keep reading for a brief outline of the situation, and for more details on the sources used in creating this map.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Ethiopia's Sidama Zone Votes to Become Regional State

Want even more free geography news updates like this one? Help us out by taking a 3-minute survey on our plan to seek funding through optional donations.

Political map of Ethiopia's regional states, highlighting Sidama Zone, which in November 2019 voted to split off from the Southern Nations, Nationalities, and People's Region (SNNPR) to become a new regional state.

Sidama Referendum Passes

Last week, we reported on a status referendum in southern Ethiopia, where the Sidama Zone was voting on whether to secede from the country's Southern Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples' Region (SNNPR).

Over the weekend, the Ethiopian government announced that the referendum had passed by a very large margin: According to preliminary results, an enormous 98.5% of voters chose increased self-rule. (Voter turnout was also reported to be extremely high, at 99.8%.)

Ethiopia's government has signaled that it plans to respect the result, making the Sidama Zone into the country's tenth self-governing "regional state". This comes despite warnings that Sidama's promotion will supercharge campaigns for statehood in other regions, which could lead to a cascade of mini-secessions that would shake up Ethiopia's administrative structure and politics.

But the Sidama Zone won't become a state immediately - there will likely be a long, contentious process, which requires an amendment to Ethiopia's constitution. One major issue is that the SNNPR's capital city, Hawassa, is located inside the Sidama Zone. If it's going to become the capital of the Sidama Region instead, then the SNNPR will have to find a new capital and move all its government institutions there.

Sidama will become the second-smallest of the Ethiopia's regional states, after the Harari People's National Regional State (the cities of Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa aren't considered regional states, even though they stand separately from the other regions). Its promotion will also create a new state-level exclave - a part of a state that's not connected to the rest of the state - by cutting off the Gedeo Zone to its south from the rest of the SNNPR.

Want to know when these changes actually happen? You'll hear about it here on PolGeoNow!