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Rift Valley Institute

Making local knowledge work

Ethiopia after Meles: National and regional implications

The death of Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi in August 2012 marked the beginning of the end of a generation of ‘reform rebels’ that came to power in East Africa in the 1990s. Prime Minister from 1995 until his death, Meles’ political influence within Ethiopia and the East Africa region was immense. A formidable intellect and at one time the face of a heralded African renaissance, he became a key ally of the West in the global war on terrorism. Six months after his death, it is an appropriate time to reflect on his legacy, both in Ethiopia and the broader region. What is the current status of the political transition in Ethiopia? What are the implications of Meles’ death for relations between Ethiopia and Eritrea, for relations with Kenya, the Sudans and for statebuilding in Somalia? A panel of experts debated these and other questions. A meeting report is available here.

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