Eritrea commemorates Operation Fenkil’s 29th anniversary

Official Commemoration of Operation Fenkil. Photo: African Media.

JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA (ADV) – This year marks 29 years since the Second Battle of Massawa, also known as Operation Fenkil and as the Fenkil offensive, took place in and around the coastal city of Massawa in Eritrea.

To commemorate this historical event, the Mauritian President, Isaias Afwerki, laid a wreath at the Tiwalet Monument recently. This year’s commemorative ceremony was themed, Operation Fenkil: Epitome of Heroic History.

It was attended by senior government and People’s Front for Democracy and Justice (PFDJ) officials including the part Secretary, Alamin Seid, a number of visitors and Massawa residents.

The port city of Massawa Administrator, Haile Asfaha, said this year’s commemoration of had deep meaning as it was being celebrated at the time of lifting the illegal sanctions that were imposed on Eritrea and expressed appreciation for those that contributed for the colourful celebration.

The Chairperson of the Holidays Coordinating Committee in Northern Red Sea region, Zeineb Omar, said this year’s ceremony was unique because it was being celebrated, following the peace and friendship agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia.

Zeineb called for taking advantage of the opportunity for renewing commitment and strengthening participation in the nation building process.

The event was highlighted by cultural and artistic performance, and other programs representing the history and the heroic feats demonstrated during the Operation Fenkil to liberate Massawa.

The Second Battle of Massawa took place in 1990. It was conducted by both land and sea units of the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front (EPLF) against the Ethiopian.

The EPLF forces began the offensive by cutting of the critical supply route from the Asmara garrison from 8 February 1990. This was followed by a surprise attack which stunned the Ethiopian military, and by the following afternoon, the EPLF forces were in the suburbs of Massawa.

On the third day of the offensive, the Eritrean forces captured the Ethiopian naval base near the town. The only remaining portion of the city to rid of Ethiopian troops were the islands.

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