Population 6,086,495 (July 2012 est.)
Ethnic groups: nine recognized ethnic groups: Tigrinya 55%, Tigre 30%, Saho 4%, Kunama 2%, Rashaida 2%, Bilen 2%, other (Afar, Beni Amir, Nera) 5% (2010 est.)
Languages: Tigrinya (official), Arabic (official), English (official), Tigre, Kunama, Afar, other Cushitic languages
Religions: Muslim, Coptic Christian, Roman Catholic, Protestant
Freedom of speech, press, assembly, and association are limited. Those that practice “unregistered” religions, try to flee the nation, or escape military duty are arrested and put into prison. Well known prisoners are usually held in underground cells and less known prisoners are usually put together in cargo containers or in very overcrowded prisons. Domestic and international human rights organizations are not allowed to function in Eritrea. The registered, census-based religions are the Eritrean Orthodox Tewahedo Church (a monophysite Oriental Orthodox denomination), the Roman Catholic Church, Eritrean Lutheran Church, and Sunnite Islam. All other religions are persecuted, including other denominations of Islam, such as Shi’ism, and other denominations of Christianity, such as any of the Protestant denominations. All denominations of Christianity enjoyed freedom of worship until 2002 when the government outlawed worship and assembly outside the ‘registered’ denominations. All groups who worship secretly in a house or other any unregistered place of assembly are arrested and imprisoned without charge or trial. Religious prisoners are often tortured in Eritrea. Freedom of worship is one of the top reasons thousands of Eritreans flee the country. There are thousands of Eritrean refugees in Ethiopia and the Sudan seeking asylum in Europe or another region of the West.
Living conditions: Infant mortality, total: 40.34 deaths/1,000 live births (male: 45.69 deaths/1,000 live births, female: 34.82 deaths/1,000 live births (2012 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population: 62.86 years (male: 60.73 years, female: 65.06 years (2012 est.) Literacy: total population: 67.8% (male: 78.7%, female: 57.5% (2010)
Government: Eritrea is a single-party state. Though its constitution, adopted in 1997, stipulates that the state is a presidential republic with a unicameralparliamentary democracy, it has yet to be implemented. National elections have been periodically scheduled and cancelled; none have ever been held in the country.
History: After centuries of domination by other nations, Eritrea was captured by Italy and became an Italian colony from 1890 to 1941 when the British took over. In 1950 Eritrea was federated with Ethiopia which annexed it two years later. This led to 30 years of civil war, ending in Independence. United Nations mediation on the boundaries has never been accepted by Ethiopia and conflict has continued.
In 1998 a border dispute with Ethiopia led to the two year long Eritrean–Ethiopian War. The war resulted in the death of as many as 100,000 Ethiopian and Eritrean soldiers, although specific casualty estimates are varied.
The Christians of Eritrea to be strengthened in their faith.
A move of the Holy spirit over the nation.
Wisdom for CPM in approaching Eritrean believers.