The Eritrean authorities have been holding what is being described as a “Seminar on national development programs.”
Sources in Asmara suggest the meetings at Asmara Expo site have little to do with the official subject.
Rather, the gathering – almost exclusively male and mostly elderly – has focussed mostly on the war in Tigray and the threat posed by renewed USA sanctions.
Eritrea is bogged down in what was initially meant to be a quick and easy war to rid President Isaias and Prime Minister Abiy of the Tigrayans.
But rather to the surprise of Asmara and Addis Ababa, the Tigrayans managed to fight back and thousands of Eritrean troops are now engaged in a war with apparently little end in sight.
Rather, there are reports of clashes between the Eritreans and their allies – the Amhara militia – as Eritrean soldiers plunder areas they are deployed to.
At the same time President Biden is threatening further sanctions against anyone who perpetuates the conflict.
The head of the Eritrean military, General Filipos Woldeyohannes, is already personally sanctioned.
Hence the increasing nervousness in the Eritrean ruling circle.