Horn of Africa : The Most Conflicted Corner of the World

Former U.S. Ambassador to Ethiopia and a keen observer of the politics of Horn of Africa , Professor David H. Shinn, gave a presentation at the World Affairs Council of Northern California on March 12, 2010 in San Francisco.

In his remarks, “Challenges to Peace and Stability in the Horn of Africa”, Mr Shinn noted the following among the many causative challenges for the problems in the Horn region. Whereas we feel that Mr Shinn’s observations fail to take into account the objective political realities in Ethiopia and Eritrea, the twin axis of evil, we commend the good professor for his continual involvement in the politics of this dyanmic region.

The Horn is located on a religious fault line. Sudan is about 70 percent Muslim, up to 10 percent Christian while the remaining Sudanese follow traditional African
2 religions.  Ethiopia is about 44 percent Ethiopian Orthodox, 34 percent Muslim, 19 percent Protestant and 3 percent who follow traditional religions. Eritrea is almost equally divided between Muslims and Christians.

Somalia is entirely Muslim. Djibouti is 94 percent Muslim and 6 percent Christian. Among the Muslims, there has been a growing influence from Wahhabi and Salafi fundamentalists that has challenged the more numerous followers of moderate Sufism. The big surprise with this complex mix of religions is that it has not contributed to more instability than it has.

Read Mr Shinn's remarks in Pdf : Challenges to Peace and Stability in the Horn of Africa

Link to Mr Shinn's Official blog and Video of the Presentation : Transcript of my remarks at World Affairs Council of Northern California



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