Address by President Isaias Afwerki
Asmara, 20 June 2016
Ladies and Gentlemen,
First and foremost: Highest Tribute and Eternal Glory to our Martyrs!
I would also like to express my sincere appreciation to the Eritrean people at home and abroad who have celebrated the Silver Jubilee Independence Anniversary in a spirit of ardent and unparalleled patriotism and imparted additional luster to the festivities, and also through candle vigils and other inspiring activities to pay, once again, glorious tribute to our martyrs.
What gives special meaning to this day – to the Commemoration of Martyrs Day – this year is not only the extensive preparations that Eritreans inside the country and abroad have made in remembrance of the event. But the open aggression perpetrated last Sunday in our sovereign territory in flagrant violation of international law has imparted additional significance to the commemoration of the Day.
Although the timing and place of the attack may seem baffling, for the sponsors of the TPLF regime, it had one objective with three-pronged ramifications.
The first objective was, in their own words, to precipitate “creative chaos”; to foment “artificial and interminable confusion or crisis” with a view to administering such a perennial state of affairs; or to micro-manage these crises.
In line with this distorted doctrine, they have managed to embroil the TPLF regime on three fronts.
The first front is aimed against and targets the Ethiopian people. The objective here is to ensnare Ethiopia and its people in incessant turmoil and thereby micro-manage its affairs.
The second front is to incite endless crisis between Eritrea and Ethiopia and likewise secure and advance the objectives of micro-management.
The third front constitutes of plunging Somalia in permanent crisis to undermine the capability of the Somali people to build effective government and institutions that could eradicate terrorism and extremism. On its stead, there is micro-management that nominally fights terrorism using the TPLF regime as a vehicle.
In the meantime, the spontaneous opposition of the Ethiopian people is increasingly becoming stronger with time to constitute a formidable challenge. Likewise, deliberate obstructions in the implementation of the border ruling, unwarranted sanctions, as well as accompanying political, diplomatic and economic subterfuges have been thwarted by the staunch resistance of the Eritrean people. The turmoil in Somalia has also augmented tactical challenges to the TPLF regime. In the event, it has not diminished their concern even if they have so far managed to exploit it for pretentious objectives.
The flagrant attack in sovereign Eritrean lands was thus perpetrated against the backdrop of these desperate circumstances with the aim of deflecting attention from the mounting resistance of the Ethiopian people and its future trends. The scheme also involved bolstering the attack through intertwined and intensive media, political and diplomatic campaigns.
This reckless attack, which has no significance other than a mindless act of adventurism to deflect attention, has only reinforced the resilience and resistance of the Eritrean people. It has imbued additional weight to the hard-won independence that we cherish and the honour we accord to our Martyrs.
At this juncture, and as we renew and invigorate our pledge to safeguard our national independence and the respect we accord to our Martyrs, we pay tribute to our exemplary 18 heroes who followed in the footsteps of their predecessors, kept high the banner of our Martyrs and sacrificed their lives in the attack launched last Sunday.
Praise to the Resistance and Development Strive of the Eritrean Defense Forces!
Forward with the Nation-Building Drive!
Glory to our Martyrs!
May we enjoy good rains!
Victory to the Masses!