Horn of Africa This Week

One-year anniversary of Meles’ death

The first year anniversary of the death of former Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi was commemorated this week. Several dignitaries from neighboring countries including presidents of Sudan, Somalia, and Djibouti attended the ceremony that was televised on state TV. Zenawi’s successor, Hailemariam Desalegn praised his predecessor at the memorial. The anniversary came amid allegations of rampant human rights violations; restrictions on religious and press freedom as they were under Zenawi’s rule.

Kirubel Tadesse of the Associated Press reported,

Thought credited for advancing Ethiopia’s economy, Meles was accused of killing and jailing opposition members and rigging elections. Rights groups say the oppression carried out under Meles has continued in the East African nation.

Meles was responsible for the closure of 72 independent newspapers, according to the press freedom watchdog the Committee to Protect Journalists. “At the time of Meles’ death, there were eight journalists in prison in Ethiopia. Today, there are nine,” said Mohamed Keita, advocacy coordinator for CPJ’s Africa Program.

*’s weekly round up of news and analyses from around the Horn of Africa is curated by our editorial intern Mebrat Tekle.



About the author

Mohammed A

Mohammed Ademo is a freelance journalist based in Washington, DC. He's the founder and editor of, an independent news website about Ethiopia.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.