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The Kunama is a minority ethnic-group living in the western part of Eritrea.This page exposes the unjust and discriminatory activities of the Eritrean government. It also participates in the political dialogues in Eritrea.






The meeting of the Kunama people in Ottawa (Canada). July 18-19 2005 Read more

The Kunama Civic Society (KCS), Kunama Narkaba Tummada (KNT) is officially formed, its representatives and committee-members chosen and its activities launched: October 14, 2005 Read more

Why is to and should the „Eritrean Democratic Alliance“ (EDA), seriously consider, highly value and responsibly reckon with the forces of the Eritrean Civic Societies. June1, 2006 The KCS-KNT Read more

Build a Democratic Eritrean Liberation Front. June 7, 2006The KCS-KNT Read more

The composition of the newly „established League of Eritrean Democratic Forces (LEDF)”,is neither inclusive nor representative of the Eritrean ethnic and  religious diversity. The KCS-KNT January 19, 2007. Read more

Pietro Ali Hummad Are we Kunama gradually losing the characteristics and the good qualities of our Kunama ethnic and cultural heritage? By Pietros A. Hummad. February 5, 2007 Read more

The KCS-KNT The composition of the newl „established League of Eritrean Democratic Forces (LEDF)”,is neither inclusive nor representative of the Eritrean ethnic and religious diversity. January 19, 2007. Read more

The 7th Conference of the Network of the Eritrean Civic Societies in Europe (NECS) held in “Darmstadt (Germany), from 24-26 July 2009”; the Kunama Civic Society/Kunama Narkaba Tummada (KCS/KNT) invited to attend the conference and join the organisation: The KCS/KNT: (August 4, 2009).

This year's “Conference of the NECS-Europe, was held in “ Darmstadt ( Germany ”, for us members of the Kunama Civic Society/Kunama Narkaba Tummada (KCS/KNT), in an atmosphere of great friendship, brotherhood and openness. Attending such conference for the first time and being welcomed in such a warm brotherly manner, very positively surprised us and went beyond all our expectations. Regarding this, we very cordially thank all and each member of the NECS-Europe and its leadership for, primarily accepting our request for the KCS/KNT to join it and for inviting it to attend and officially introducing its representatives, in the conference. With the prospect of having its application ratified and becoming its full member, in due time, the KCS/KNT is expressing its readiness to actively work and co-operate, with NECS-Europe, in tackling the basic problems hindering the establishment of “DEMOCRACY” in Eritrea . The KCS/KNT's activity is at the grass-root and at the ethnic level which, joined and sustained by other similar organisations can bring its output.

During those three days of intensive and detailed exchanges of information, of ideas, of open discussions, the KCS/KNT could experience that there are a lot of able and capable fellow-Eritreans who are intellectually well prepared and democratically mature who could really bring, Eritrea and its people, the lacking principles and practical interpretation of democracy in its genuine meaning. It was the sincerity with which the participants to the conference, approached the issues, that impressed us most and this is what we believe to be fundamental in building and binding forces in their networking and co-operative activities. We do sincerely hope that the NECS-E (Europe), of today will be the NECS-E ( Eritrea ) of the future, actively involved, at the grass-root and at the national levels of the future Eritrean social, cultural and economic affairs. The common aim of the network is and should be to care for the welfare and well-being of the Eritrean society in its entirety.

The only issue in which the KCS/KNT, as an ethnic-based organisation, did express its reservation, noticing the names of the NECS-Europe's various organisations and of their aims, was in the field of the Eritrean ethnic, culturo-linguistic and social diversity. To our view, though all names of the organisations include and carry the adjective “Eritrean”, there is only the diversity of “principles”, of “ideologies” and of “aims”, but not that of the ethnic, of the culturo-linguistic and of the social diversity which, fundamentally characterises the Eritrean nation, the Eritrean people and the Eritrean society.

This is the reason the KCS/KNT has very deliberately limited its name and its range of action only within the Kunama context, though, with the firm desire and hope that other Eritrean ethnic-and-folk-groups too would come up with their own folk/ethnic-based civic societies and join us, so that the very meaning of the word “network” is actually and commonly interpreted and practised by the active participations of all the communities forming the diversity of the Eritrean society. The ideological diversity only could and can be also a subtle way of retaining exclusion which is the major means of division.

Specifically confronting the recent decisions of the PFDJ's regime to relocate, in what is known as the Gash-Barka region”, and in an unprecedented manner, families and populations from the Eritrean highland regions, particularly the members of the Eritrean-Tigrian ethnic-component, the NECS-Europe's members came to the conclusion that such uncalled and unnecessary program is and will be very detrimental to the victims of the “forcibly” relocated families and populations and to the populations whose native homelands and native and ancestral lands are being invaded, expropriated and distributed to the new settlers. The phenomenon is seen as generally affecting.

Though the KCS/KNT's members reminded that the fates of the “victims”, (the relocated families and populations), and that of the “victimised”, (those populations whose native homelands have been chosen for relocations), are different and the equation of relocation and of its damages, to the native homelands chosen, (the homeland of the Kunama and of other populations), should be seen differently and given its due weight and significance, the majority of the NECS-Europe's members were of the opinion that, basically, the “relocation” itself “has an ethnic-cleansing aim and significance, equally affecting every homeland and its native populations” and therefore it has to be taken, considered, condemned and declared as an evil phenomenon, equally damaging all, and that was the final point agreed on.

The KCS/KNT's members explained that there is a background history which has created misconceptions and misunderstandings, concerning the present “Gash-Barka region” and that lies solely on the names themselves of “Gash” and “Barka”, which, with the time, from the names of two rivers have been turned into those of two native homelands and of two regions.

 “GASH” is the river the Eritrean-Tigrians call “Mereb”, in their regions;

the Kunama call it “Sona” in their homeland and

the Sudanese call it “Gash”, in their country.

 “BARKA” is the name of the river flowing through the Beni-Amer populations' homeland.

The question therefore, is:

how come the two regions had been given the combined names of two rivers and joined together geographically and administratively?

It is widely proven that the Italian colonial authority had been the one which had conjured out and imposed those two names and the following authorities and rulers in Eritrea , just inherited them. The Italian colonial authorities had deliberately given neutral names to the two regions, in order to introduce, justify and establish their principle of “Terreno Demaniale”, translated by the British into “ State Land ” and by the present PFDJ's regime into “Meriet Mengsti”. To our view, this long chain of cunningly distorting the native populations' traditional names of their rivers and of their native homelands, degenerated into the present predicament where the relocated populations, as well as some of the native populations of those regions, are being confused and succumbing to the regime's newly drawn geographical and administrative borders and names of the Eritrean regions. The “Gash-Barka region”, to many non-native and uninformed populations, is the “Terreno Demaniale, the State Land and Meriet Mengsti”, uninhabited and open for every Eritrean and non-Eritrean citizen to rush in, occupy, buy and settle in.

Similarly, the river the Ethiopians call “Setit/Takaze” in their country, is called by the Kunama “Tika-Suba/Bahara”, when flowing along their borders. Today, very falsely, for some populations and forces, “Gash-Setit”, stand for the Kunama Land . They stand only for the names of two rivers which locally, are not even known and called as such. This is the root-cause of the misconception and misunderstanding that have been lingering in many minds.

The “relocation” program and policy is only a step further in the regime's attempts to neutralise Eritrea 's ethnic and culturo-linguistic identities and diversities, by forcefully pursuing to homogenise the Eritrean regions, the Eritrean populations, the Eritrean nation and the Eritrean society. In practical terms however, what is now known as “Gash”, is the native homelands of the Kunama and of the Nara populations; and “Barka” is the native homelands of the Beni-Amer and of the Baria populations. There is no unpopulated land, in the Eritrean western lowlands, as there is no unpopulated land in the highland regions, with their proper ethnic-names of Akele-Guzai, Hamasien and Serae.

We do believe and hope that such analysis of the geographical and of the demographic constellation of the Eritrean western lowlands would help to understand and perceive the risks the forced (or even voluntary) relocations of non-native families and populations will entail. Those highland families and populations have to be informed and know that they are being relocated in the native homelands of the Baria, of the Beni-Amer, of the Kunama and of the Nara populations; that their permanence is only temporary.

The itinerary we, at KCS/KNT perceive to be the best and the most effective to take and pursue, in order to learn and understand each other's homelands, populations, histories and cultures, is only if and when other ethnic-based Eritrean civic societies too join the “Network” and together, we strive for the unity, security and stability of our Eritrean nation and for the peaceful and harmonious cohabitation of our Eritrean populations and societies in our diversities. We are and should be the forces “networking” among ourselves and among our different social entities in order to build and sustain our nation.

In view of such common aim, the KCS/KNT is very cordially inviting all our fellow-Eritrean ethnic-groups and their members to join us to join the NECS-Europe in building a strong civic society organisation today, in order to be a balancing force in democratising and in the democratic Eritrea of the future.

Let us not be discouraged by the present PFDJ regime's dictatorship, which, just as many other dictatorships, will face its final days and crumble.

To the leadership and to the NECS-Europe's member-organisations, a heartfelt thanks for giving the KCS/KNT a window of opportunity to join the “Network” and for keeping the door open for any civic organisation, whether ethnic or ideologically-based, wishing to join it. A cordial wish of success for all of us!

The KCS/KNT: (August 4, 2009).


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