The Roots of Horn of African Conflicts

Friday, July 18, 2014: 8:45 AM
Room: Booth 50
Oral Presentation
Alemayehu KUMSA , Institute of Ethnology, Charles University, Prague, Czech Republic
The Roots of Horn of African Conflicts

Majority of societies passed through various conflicts in their history. Horn of African societies entered new types of violent conflicts starting at the end of 19th century, which is continuing until today under different forms. Exceptionality of Horn of Africa is that Abyssinia (Ethiopia) was the only African Empire state, which participated in the colonization of Africa with Western European states at the end of 19th century. Compared to all participants of colonial powers of this part of Africa, Abyssinian conquest war was the longest and the bloodiest violent conflict according to historical empirical data. The territories of many nations were divided and became part of different colonial territories and different nations were forced to be part of the same colonial territory. The paper will discuss conflicts at different levels in the Horn of Africa: the conflict between state and ethno-national identity in the Sudan and Ethiopia.  The Ethiopian empire colonial character from the view of non-Abyssinia peoples, the problem of interference of the state in religion affairs of some groups in Ethiopia (e.g., Islam and Waaqefana (Oromo indigenous religion), geopolitical interests of foreign powers in the region will be the main points of the discussion. The role of Ethiopian state interest in Somali conflict will be one of the points of discussion of the paper