Ethiopia is rich and diverse in cultural and religious history, being the oldest independent African country and one of the oldest in the world. The country formerly included the now independent state of Eritrea. It endured turmoil between competing local rulers until it was united under emperors (aside from a brief period of Italian occupation during WWII) from 1869 until 1974.
During 1974, a provisional council of soldiers (The Derg) seized power and installed a totalitarian military government. Following a number of violent uprisings against the Derg, particularly in the northern regions of Tigray and Eritrea, the regime finally collapsed in 1991 and a transitional government was formed. This led to the founding in 1994 of the current Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, while Eritrea found independence in 1995.
The country is under regular threat of droughts, which has increased with climate change. There are rising average annual temperatures and increasing unreliable rainfall. Much of the country relies heavily on the land to earn any kind of living and droughts can be extremely dangerous for large section of the country. The Ethiopian government is working hard to beat poverty, with an impressive record on spending to help the poorest communities.
In the last five years it has made good progress towards achievement of the Millennium Development Goals: halving outbreaks of Malaria, doubling immunisation rates and enrolling an additional four million children in primary schools.
The government's "Productive Safety Net Programme" (PSNP) currently assists approximately seven million people struggling to feed their families by providing food or cash in return for work on improving infrastructure such as roads or irrigation.
Tell me something about Ethiopia….
- Ethiopia has a population of 84.7 million
- 83% of the population lives in rural areas, the majority are farmers, which puts an incredible strain on the land
- 1 in 10 children die before their 5th birthday
- Ethiopia is a landlocked country of around 1.2million sq. km. in east central Africa, which is commonly known as "The Horn of Africa."
- There are a lot of gender inequality problems as Ethiopian tradition is strong in this area