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Eritrea's Information

Flag of Eritrea
Land Area 101,000 km2
Water Area 16,600 km2
Total Area 117,600km2 (#99)
Population 5,869,869 (#112)
Population Density 58.12/km2
Government Type Presidential Republic
GDP (PPP) $9.17 Billion
GDP Per Capita $1,300
Currency Nakfa (ERN)
Largest Cities

The history of Eritrea can be traced back to ancient Egyptian times, as the ancient Puntites who dominated the land had close ties with Pharaoh Sahure and Queen Hatshepsut.

The Aksumite Kingdom rose to power during the 1st century AD, followed by South Arabians, Ottoman Turks, the Portuguese, the Egyptians, the British, and finally the Italians in the 19th century.

European powers rushed Africa after the opening of the Suez Canal in 1869, and on January 1, 1890, Eritrea became an official colony of Italy.

The Italians were driven out by the British through the Battle of Keren in 1941, and subsequently adminstered until 1951.

Eritrea was awarded to Ethiopia in 1952 as part of a federation under a UN Mandate. Ethiopia's annexation of Eritrea as a province 10 years later sparked a 30-year struggle for independence that ended in 1991 with Eritrean rebels defeating governmental forces; independence was overwhelmingly approved in a 1993 referendum.

A border war with Ethiopia that erupted in 1998 ended under UN auspices in December 2000.

Eritrea currently hosts UN peacekeeping operations that monitor a 15-mile (25 km) wide Temporary Security Zone on the border with Ethiopia. An international commission, organized to resolve the border dispute, posted their findings in 2002; however, its final demarcation is on hold due to Ethiopian objections.

These days, border conflicts contiue between both Djibouti and Ethiopia. In 2008, a call for the UN to terminate its peacekeeping mission and a conflict between Djiboutian troops and Eritrea errupted, and the country's immediate future remains uncertain as time goes on.

This page was last updated on April 7, 2017.

Eritrea Trivia

What is the Largest Ethnic Group in Eritrea?

The Biher-Tigrinya people are the largest ethnic group in Eritrea today, followed by the related Tigre people.

Major Ethnic Groups Of Eritrea

What is the highest mountain in Eritrea?

Dega Mountain has the highest peak in Eritrea. It reaches 9,997 feet above sea level.

The Highest Mountains in Eritrea

About the Author

John Moen is a cartographer who along with his wife are the orignal founders of worldatlas.com. He and his wife, Chris Woolwine-Moen, produced thousands of award-winning maps that are used all over the world and content that aids students, teachers, travelers and parents with their geography and map questions. Today, it's one of the most popular educational sites on the web.

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