This article is incomplete because it is pending further input from participants, or it is a work-in-progress by one author.
Please comment on this article's talk page to share your input, comments and questions.
Note: To contribute to this article, you may need to seek help from the author(s) of this page.
Republic of Habasha
Motto: ነፃነት እና እድገት
Nets'aneti ina Idigeti
(English: "Freedom and Progress")
Anthem: የዜግነት ክብር
(English: "Marching Forward")
and largest city
|Working languages||Mehare |
|Official scripts||Giiz, Gheiravic, Fiorentine|
|Government||Unitary dominant-party parliamentary republic|
|Legislature||Congress of People's Representatives|
|13 December 1967|
|1,027,225 km2 (396,614 sq mi) (?)|
• Water (%)
• 2018 estimate
|62.6/km2 (162.1/sq mi) (?)|
|GDP (PPP)||2018 estimate|
|$1.281 trillion (22nd)|
• Per capita
|GDP (nominal)||2018 estimate|
|$949.354 billion (24th)|
• Per capita
|Gini (2014)|| 34.4|
medium · ?
|HDI (2017)|| 0.787|
high · ?
|Currency||Habashi talari (HBT)|
|Time zone||UTC+1 (GST)|
|ISO 3166 code||HB|
Habasha (Mehare: ሐበሻ, Ḥabesha, pronounced /häβɛʃä/), officially the Republic of Habasha (Mehare: የሐበሻ ሪፐብሊክ, ye'Ḥabesha Rīpebilīk, pronounced /jɛhäβɛʃä ɾipɛbɨlik/ or /ɾipɛbɨlikɨ/) is a country in northern Majula. It shares a land border with Fahran and Khemri to the east, Cebragas to the west and Oagadishu to the south and south-west. Habasha is seprated from Kazhwir to the north by the Majulan Canal, connecting the Asur and Decanian Seas. The country has a population of 64 million people, the third highest in Majula and the 16th highest in the world. It occupies a total area of 1,027,225 km2 (396,613.8 square miles), being the xx largest country in Majula and xx largest in the world. The capital and largest city is Gondar (ocassionally also spelled 'Gonder').
Some of the oldest skeletal evidence for anatomically modern humans has been found in Habasha. Traditionally, the origin of the modern Habashi state and the Habashi monarchy dates back to the 2nd century BC when the mythical Queen Gudit became the first Neguse Negest of the kingdom of Begwena, located in the modern-day area of xx and xx in central Habasha. The Kingdom of Begwena became a Fiorentine client kingdom until the conquest of the Medhri Bahri by Marwan I (106 AD). Etc.
During the 19th and early 20th centuries, the prestige of the traditional Habashi monarchy, associated with the mythical Alydian Daamite Kingdom and the careful diplomacy of kings Yohannes IV and Tewodros VII safeguarded the independence of the country. The monarchy would ultimately be brought down in 1952 by the xx Revolution when King Tewodros IX was exiled. The divisions between revolutionaries along ethnic and ideological lines resulted in the 1954-1957 Habashi Civil War. The victory of Menelik Dengel ushered a period of authoritarian military rule in which the armed forced engaged in ethnic cleansing against the lowland ethnic peoples, (Galla, Sidamo or Danakil). In 1968, Menelik Dengel was ousted by a coup d'état led by pro-democratic forces. The first democratic election was held in 1970 and it returned a majority for the Democratic People's Party, which has governed the country since. The DPP rule period has been marked by rapid export-driven economic growth, as Habasha transitioned from one of the poorest countries in the world to a newly industrialised country.
Habasha is a unitary multi-party parliamentary democracy in which the Democratic People's Party has a dominant role, having governed the country uninterruptedly since 1970. The country is ranked a flawed democracy due to the entreched rule of the DPP and its control over the media. Thanks to the economic growth of the last four decades, Habasha is now classified as a newly industrialised country with a 'high' human development, ranking xx in Majula and xx in the world. The country is considered a regional power as it is the xx largest economy in Majula and the xx in the world. Its economy is export-driven where the largest industries are electronics, automobiles, ships, machinery, petrochemicals and tourism. Habasha is a member of the Community of Majulan Nations, the Universal Irsadic Cooperative Congress, the xx and a signatory of the Kızılkand Agreements.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Politics
- 4 Economy
- 5 Demographics
- 6 Culture
The English term 'Habasha' and the Mehare ሐበሻ (trans. 'Ḥabesha' or 'Ḥabasha') are both derived from the Gheiravic exonym أحباش (transl. 'al-Habash', pronounced /ʔħbaːʃ/). The Gheiravic term first appears in the texts of Fahrani conquerors during the expansion of the Caliphate into northern Majula during the 2nd century CE. The term originally referred to the Habashi Lisanic language-speaking highlands people, the ancestors of the modern-day Mehare and Mensai peoples. The Gheiravic term is supposedly borrowed from Giiz, a Lisanic language spoken in the Habashi highlands and the Medri Bahri until the 10th century CE and closely related to both Mehare and Mensai. In Giiz, 'ሐበሠ' (transl. HBS, theoretically vocalised as 'Habesh') referred to the inhabitants of the highlands. The term was probably borrowed to Gheiravic from the local proto-Jeberti peoples.
Written evidence from this period suggests that the Mehare and Mensai polities did not identify with this term. Instead, records indicate that the inhabitants of the Kingdom of Daamt identified as 'መሐረመ' (transl. 'mehare'am') meaning 'the beautiful people'. There are no records of the use of the term 'ሐበሻ' as an endonym until the 16th century writings of King xx, who identified his territories as the 'Land of the Habash', stretching from the Asuran Sea to the River xx in the south. After his death in the Battle of xx against the xx Emirate, the term would become more widely used to refer to not only the territories encompassing the traditional lands of the xx Dynasty in the Mehare Highlands but also the Irsadic lands of the Medri Bahri. These territories, ruled by Sifhari or Dhawamal emirs were depicted as under foreign occupation and in need of liberation.
The rapid modernisation programme of Emperor Tewodros IX created resentment amidst the country's quasi-feudal nobility and the Alydian Church. The Famine of 1952 in Galla-majority areas increased tensions in the country, and particularly within the military, given the outsize role of Galla people in its lower echelons. On December 13, 1952, a group of colonels, led by Abadula Demeksa took over Gondar and exiled Tewodros IX, putting an end to the imperial regime.
The Colonels' Rule period saw the enactment of land reform and timid democratisation amidst great political and social instability. Ethnic tensions greatly rose as a result of Mehare allegiance to the ancien regime which stood at odds with the Galla-majority ruling officers. Tensions rose particularly in Selale where the influx of Mehare people to the capital stood at odds with the county's Galla majority, creating resentment. By February 1956, public altercations between the ethnic groups escalated into violent clashes involving ethnic paramilitaries. Mehare and monarchist forces accused Abadula Demeksa of inciting and tolerating this violence and called for his ousting. In reaction, military forces attacked well-known opposition areas, sacking Yabelo and murdering Ras Mikael Yohannes.
Habasha is the xxth largest country in Majula and the xxth largest country in Aeia with a total landmass of 1,027,225 km2 (396,613.8 square miles). The country lies between the xx and xx latitutes. Habasha shares a land border with, clockwise, Fahran, xx, Oagadishu and Cebragas. It is separated from Kazhwir, to the north, by the Majulan Canal, an artificial waterway connecting the Asur and Decanian seas. Something about disputed territories. The highest peak in Habasha is Mount Bwahit, in the Debubi Mountains, with an estimated altitude of 4,520 meters above sea level. The lowest point is the xx Depression, in the xx Desert, with an altitude of 15 meters below sea level. Gondar, the capital city of Habasha is the highest capital city of Majula, being situated at over 2,500 meters above sea level.
Habasha is generally thought to be divided into three main geographical regions, the
- Arid or semi-arid southern lowlands, with savannah-style landscapes. Further south, it becomes more arid, essentially a desert.
- The Habashi Highlands occupying most of central and north-central Habasha. Heavy human presence, alpinoafrican ecosystem. Main mountain ranges here as well.
- Coastal areas (Medri Bahri) by the Asur Sea in the far-north and the xx Strait. Mediterranean grasslands.
The climate of Habasha varies greatly owing to the country's large size and orography. Overall, it is temperate on the plateau and hot in the lowlands. Although the country's highlands are within the tropics, it is counterbalanced by the elevation of the land. In the central plateau,
|Climate data for Gondar|
|Record high °C (°F)||30
|Average high °C (°F)||23.5
|Daily mean °C (°F)||15.4
|Average low °C (°F)||7.4
|Record low °C (°F)||1
|Rainfall mm (inches)||13
|Avg. rainy days||3||5||7||10||10||20||27||26||18||4||1||1||132|
|Mean daily sunshine hours||9||9||8||7||8||6||3||3||5||8||9||9||7|
Habasha features a large range of environmental habitats. As a result, Habasha has a large variety of indigenous plant and animal species. As of 2008, there were at least 279 species of mammals, 268 species of birds, and over 6,700 species of plants throughout the country. Of these, 30 mammal species are considered to be endemic to Habasha, such as the red jackal the Daamite ibex, the balbok or the Imperial zebra. Habasha is also home to twenty-two endemic bird species.
Environmental degradation beginning in the 20th century and greatly accelerated as a result of the rapid economic growth of the last third of the 20th century has resulted in considerable and rapid wildlife populations decline due to logging, pollution, poaching, and other human factors. One particular cause behind the reduction in the biodiversity of Habasha is deforestation. At the beginning of the 20th century, an estimated 36.8% of the Habashi landscape was forested. By 1993, this percentage had gone down to 11.8%. Deforestation contributes to soil erosion, loss of nutrients in the soil, loss of animal habitats, and reduction in biodiversity.
Since 2002, the Habashi government has launched a major reforestation programme in order to stop the processes of desertification and loss of biodiversity. As of 2016, the percentage of forested land in Habasha had increased to 18.5%. The creation of a network of national parks and nature reserves is also a part of a comprehensive conservation effort aimed at regaining loss wildlife diversity and reverse the downward trends of wildlife numbers. Of these, the most iconic campaign has been the Save the Lions (አንበሶችን ያስቀምጡ, Anibesochini Yasikemitu) programme, that has contributed to the growth of the two lion sub-species present in Habasha, the Panthera leo melanochaita and the Northern lion. Both species are traditionally linked to the trappings of Habashi polities.
Habasha is a parliamentary constitutional republic with a unicameral legislature, known as the Mikiri Bēti (Mehare: ምክር ቤት). The executive branch is headed by the President, currently Yohannes Emanuel, although effective political power is wielded by the Executive Council headed by the Prime Minister, the country's chief executive. Like in other parliamentary systems, the legislature is the most important element of the political system, as it elects the members of the Executive Council, passes legislation, approves or rejects international agreements, treaties and passes the annual budget.
The executive branch is divided between the head of state, the President (የሐበሻ ፕሬዚዳንት, yeḤabesha Pirēzīdaniti) and the Prime Minister (ጠቅላይ ሚኒስትር, T’ek’ilayi Mīnīsitiri). The President has a very limited executive power, however, as his role is largely ceremonial, serving as the representative of the Nation and the State. The President is elected for a non-renewable single term of 8 years by an electoral college formed by the members of Congress and an equal number (360) of district delegates. Unlike other heads of state, the President does not serve as the commander-in-chief of the armed forces, instead, this position is held by the Minister of Defence. The Prime Minister is constitutionally the head of government and presides the Executive Council (አስፈፃሚ ካውንስል, Asifet͟s’amī Kawinisili). The Prime Minister depends on the support of the legislative branch and can lose power as a result of a confidence vote. The Prime Minister names the ministers that make up the Executive Council. The current Prime Minister is Hailemariam Tewodros, who has served in that post since 2006.
The legislative branch is formed by a unicameral legislature, the Congress of People's Representatives (የህዝብ ተወካዮች ምክር ቤት, yeHizibi Tewekayochi Mikiri Bēti). The Congress' 360 members are directly elected every six years in 55 multi-members constituencies through proportional representation. In its legislative role, the Congress is aided by two consultative bodies, the Socio-Economic Council (ማህበረ-ኢኮኖሚያዊ ካውንስል, Mahibere-Ikonomīyawī Mikiri Bēti), which brings together different economic interest groups and civil society organisations; and the Council of Districts (የወረዳዎች ምክር ቤት, yeWeredawochi Mikiri Bēti), where representatives of the country's administrative divisions provide input into the legislative process. Neither body can propose legislation. Instead, their legislative function is akin to that of an informal upper house, proposing amendments and serving as a nexus with civil society and territorial and ethnic interests.
The politics of Habasha are characterised as being a dominant party system, a flawed democracy with a 'mostly free' ranking in the Aeian Freedom Index. International human rights watchdog organisations like the Aeian Human Rights Monitor consistently rank the freedom of speech and press freedom situation in Habasha as poor. DPP politicians have often employed to the country's strong anti-hate speech and libel laws to go after critical opposition leaders and journalists, seeking to drive them to bankruptcy. The government also names the head of the public broadcasting corporation, the HSAM, which has been accussed of acting as a de facto party media entity. Elections are up to international standards in terms of their conducts, which is guaranteed by the independent Electoral Court, however critics argue that the country's electoral system is designed to favour the DPP by creating smaller electoral districts in urban areas where the DPP support is higher.
The Habashi judicial system is based off Asuran civil law although incorporating elements of Habashi customary law, particularly in matters dealing with civil law. Habasha has a long tradition of written law, dating back to the Fetha Nagast and the Kebra Nagast, codified by King Malak Sagad around 1250.
The Constitution of 1970, also known as the Third Constitution (ሶስተኛ ህገ መንግስት, Sositenya Hige Menigisiti) is a codified basic law serving as the supreme legal document in Habasha, enshrining the principles and organisation of the State, as well as the relations between the various branches of governments and between the national and subordinate levels of government. Below the Constitution, there are a series of codes of law each covering a legal strand. The autonomy of judges is limited, as their role is limited to the interpretation of laws within the boundaries set by the principle of jurisprudence constante.
Typically, the Habashi legal system is divided into three different streams: civil, criminal and administrative law. Civil law matters are usually divided between those that affect matters of family law and the rest. Family law cases (like marriage, divorce or inheritances) are resolved in religious tribunals where both parties are from the same religious background, and in the case of Irsad, the same school. Both criminal and law cases are heard by the same court of last resort, the Supreme Court. Administrative law matters, however, operate separately and have their own hierarchy, with the Superior Administrative Court acting as its court of last resort.
The only court able to carry out judicial review over primary legislation is the Constitutional Court (የሰውነት ፍርድ ቤት, yeSewineti Firidi Beti). The Constitutional Court's decisions are binding and serve as precedent. Any piece of legislation under review from the Court will be temporarily suspended until a verdict is reached. Any citizen or institution, as well as lower, ordinary courts, can raise matters before the Constitutional Court.
Law enforcement in Habasha is carried out by three different police forces. The main police force in Habasha is the National Police (ብሄራዊ ፖሊስ, Bihewari Polis), a civilian police force tasked with a wide range of duties, from urban and highway patrolling to dealing with organized crime, terrorism or drug legislation enforcement. The second major police force is the Civil Guard (ሲቪል ዘበኛ, Sivili Zebenya), tasked with the patrol of rural areas, particularly pastoral areas in southern Habasha as well as with customs enforcement. Lastly, each county and the autonomous city also has its own local police force, typically known as yeKetema Zebenya (የከተማ ዘበኛ) tasked with matters such as community policing.
Habasha is divided into 32 counties (Mehare: አውራጃ, Ewraja) and 5 free cities (Mehare: ነጻ ከተማ, Netsa ketema). Each county is itself into divided into a number of municipalities or kebele (ቀበሌ). There are a total of 847 kebeles. The autonomous cities are divided into boroughs or kifle ketema (ክፍለ ከተማ). For statistical and investment purposes, the 37 counties and cities are grouped into 7 statistical regions (እስታቲስቲክ ክፍለ ሃጌረ, Isitatīsitīki Kifle Hager).
Each county is headed by a Governor (እንደራሴ, Enderase), named by the national government. The governor forms a county's Executive Board together with 3 to 5 aldermen (ዳኛ, danya) elected by the county assemblies from among its members. The County Assembly (ስብሰባ, Sibiseba) is directly-elected by the citizens residing within one county every four years. Its size is proportional to the population of a district and ranges from 25 to 80 members. The autonomous cities operate in a similar fashion, with a Mayor (ከንቲባ, Kenitība) named by the national government, who heads the executive branch, cooperating with a locally-chosen City Assembly.
As a unitary state, the competencies of the counties are limited, being largely limited to the regional implementation of national policies. However, they possess some autonomy in the areas of regional spatial development, environmental matters, regional public transportation and accesibility, economic promotion and the management of sports facilities, libraries and the promotion of regional cultural production.
Habasha's location in the intersection between Majula and the Sifhar as well as its control over the Majulan Canal connecting the Asur Sea and the Decanian Sea has largely determined its foreign policy course. The country is diplomatically non-aligned with good relations with its neighbours, particularly Sidi Synnia, although relations with neighbouring Fahran are strained as a result of the country's support for the Faithful Peoples' Front during the Medhri Bahri insurgency. The country is a founding member of the Community of Majulan Nations. The headquarters of the Community's Executive Secretariat are located in Gondar, and the current Secretary-General, Ayele Yihun Andenet is Habashi.
Habasha is a signatory to the Kızılkand Agreements, together with Hisaristan, Fahran, Sidi Synnia and various other Sifharran nations. The Agreements established a common customs union and free trade zone between members. Likewise, Habasha is a member of the Majulan Free Trade Space created under the aegis of the CMN. Habasha also is a founding member of the Majulan Peacekeeping Taskforce, currently deployed in xx, and of the Decanian Protection Taskforce, a multinational naval force operating in the proximities of the Majulan Canal.
Good relations with Asuran countries, and particularly Midrasia, have been a cornerstone of Habashi foreign policy since the late 19th century, when King xx requested Midrasian support in the Sea War and later in order to jointly manage the Majulan Canal. Since 2007, Habashi foreign policy initiatives have sought to facilitate the export of the growing Habashi economy by signing a series of bilateral free trade agreements.
The Habashi foreign policy is primarily conducted by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, currently headed by Kesetebirhan Admasu. Habasha has embassies in x countries.
The Habashi Defence Forces (Mehare: የሐበሻ የመከላከያ ኃይል, yeḤabesha yeMekelakeya Hayili) are the armed forces of Habasha. The Defece Forces are divided into three branches: the Habashi Land Force, the Habashi Navy and the Habashi Air Force. The command of the Defence Forces lies with the commander-in-chief, the Minister of National Defence, currently Demeke Andargachew. The combined manpower of the Defence Forces consists of 446,844 military personnel, 129,789 of which are active, with the remaining 317,055 reserve troops. In 1999, Habasha completed its transition from a conscript force to a full-time, all-volunteer military. Although compulsory attendance has been abolished, conscription itself has not, and remains a possibility in case of war. In 2015, the military spending was at $28.7 billion, or 2.9% of the country's GDP.
The Habashi Land Force (የመሬት ኃይል, yeMereti Hayili) is the land-based branch of the Habashi Defence Forces. The Land Force is by far the largest and oldest component of the Defence Forces, with over 400,000 members, of which 97,854 are on active duty. The Land Force is organised into 27 brigades grouped into six army corps. Reservists are available to the Defence Forces and participate in defence exercises and deployments abroad. The National Intelligence Directorate (ብሄራዊ የኢንተለጀንት ክፍፍል), the military intelligence agency is also formally a part of the Land Force, although it operates autonomously and outside the regular chain of command.
The Habashi Navy (ባህርይ, Bahiriyi) is the maritime component of the Defence Forces. The Navy is manned by 15,053 military personnel and is composed of 97 vessels in service, including minor auxiliary ones. The Habashi Navy is a small, green-water navy, tasked primarily with the defence of the country's shoreline and its EEZ. The Bahiriyi is one of the three navies that form the core of the Decanian Protection Taskforce, a multinational anti-piracy force that operates in the Decanian Sea, protecting the sea lanes that cross through the Majulan Canal.
The Habashi Air Force (አየር ኃይል, Ayeri Hayili) is the youngest branch of the Defence Forces, being founded as an autonomous service only in 1957. The Air Force's military personnel stands at 16,862 with a total of 348 aircraft at its disposal. Currently, the Air Force is in the process of testing the first domestically-designed and produced fifth-generation fighter jets to replace the current fleet of xxs.
The Habashi Defence Forces, and in particular the Land Force have played an important safekeeping role during the forty-year Medhri Bahri Insurgency in Barka, Awsa and Jijiga. The use of military forces for policing duties proved controversial, and various allegations of human rights violations and summary executions of suspected Irsadic and separatist insurgents or suspected sympathisers.
Habasha is a newly industrialised country and emergent economy with an export-dependent mixed economy. Habasha had a gross domestic product of $1.281 trillion (PPP) as of 2018 and an estimated nominal GDP of $949.35 billion as of 2018. This makes Habasha the second largest economy in Majula behind Cebragas, the second largest in the Majulo-Sifhari region and the 22nd largest in Aeia. Habasha is the richest country according to GDP per capita in Majula, the 4th wealthiest in the Majulo-Sifhari region and the 38th in the world.
Beginning in the 1970s, Habasha has experienced one of Aeia's fastest growth rates, with an annual average growth of over 8% in the period 1970-1995, quadrupling its GDP per capita during that time period. The severe economic downturn experienced in Majula in the mid-1990s affected Habasha, which experienced an economic depression in the years 1996 and 1997, and a slow recovery in 1998 and 1999. Beginning in the year 2000 however, the country recovered, and in the period between 1998 and 2018, Habasha has experienced rapid growth again, with an average annual growth rate surpassing 9% of the GDP. Currently, Habasha is expected to reach developed country status within the next two decades.
Today, Habasha's economy is heavily export-dependent, with exports accounting for more than two-thirds of gross domestic product (GDP). Exports have provided the primary impetus for the country's rapid economic development, particularly the automobiles, appliances, machinery, copper and textiles as well as various consumer goods.
The Habashi government plays a very active role in the economy, controlling the country's telecommunications, utilities, the majority of the financial industry and of the energy sector, as well as being the country's largest land-owner. Furthermore, through the five-year plans, the government invests in certain sectors of the economy in order to stimulate the growth of new (or specific) industries in the private sector. These policies have sponsored the growth of large national champions known as Nigidi (ንግድ) that dominate the Habashi economy.
As a part of the 10th and 11th five-year plans, the Habashi government has embarked on a policy of tariff reduction to increase the competitiveness of Habashi industry, while shifting investment towards technology-intensive industries, such as microelectronics, bioenginerring, aerospace or optics, and by increasing the investment in research and development (R&D) to 3% of the GNP.
The agricultural sector amounts to 7.3% of Habasha's GDP but employs 35% of the national workforce. In rural areas, over half the population works in agriculture. Thanks to the extensive 1970s land reform initiatives, the Habashi agricultural sector is highly competitive and diversified although the largest single exported crop is coffee beans, followed by pulses and cotton. The food processing industry is becoming an increasingly important feature of the Habashi economy, especially thanks to firms like Tomogo.
Industry represents the economic motor of the Habashi economic miracle. The secondary sector represents 40.1% of the national gross domestic product and employs 18.1% of the country's labour force as of 2017. Manufacturing represents the lion's share of the GDP and the employment of Habasha's secondary sector, representing 35% of the national GDP alone. The automotive industry as well as the consumer goods industry represent the biggest sectors in terms of contribution to the GDP. In 2015, Habasha's automotive industry has an annual output of near two million vehicles, of which a third are calculated to have been produced by Zemenawi, the single largest Majulan automobile manufacturer.
Services add up to 52.9% of the GDP employing nearly half of the country's population. The main sector are retail, the financial sector, telecommunications and tourism. Unlike other sectors, the financial and banking industries are majority state-owned, although the Tewodros government is proceeding with the liberalisation of the sector. The Gondar Stock Exchange is the second-largest stock exchange in Majula and the xxth in the world by its combined market capitalization.
As of 2019, the country's unemployment rate is 2.1%, at full employment, while the inflation rate stood at 4.5%. The National Bank of Habasha is the country's central bank, tasked with guaranteeing monetary stability and pursuing growth-promoting monetary policy.
Habasha receives over 29 million visitors every year, with the number projected to further grow to over 35 million by 2025. Habasha is Majula's most-visited country. Tourism plays an important role in the Habashi economy, producing about 4.5% of the national GDP and directly or indirectly employing about 5% of the country's workforce and has taken off in the last decade after the end of the insurgency in northern Habasha. The majority of tourist destinations in Habasha are located in the so-called Habashi Riviera along the Asur Sea coastline thanks to the region's temperate climate and closeness to Asura.
Tourism in Habasha has increasingly diversified over the last decade, thanks to the promotion of Habasha's historical sites, such as the ruins of xx and the historical imperial residences of xx, xx and xx. Ecotourism in particular has grown exponentially since 2010, attracting over 4 million tourists in 2016 alone, thanks to activities including adventure travel, trekking and walking safaris, particularly in southern Habasha. Religious tourism has seen an uptick since 2015 thanks to the promotion of Irsadic sites from the conquest of northern Majula as well as the appeal of the Alydian monastic orders' isolated monasteries, like Amba Geshen.
Infrastructure development has been a key element of Habashi economic planning. Since the 1980s, over xx,xxx kilometres (miles) of roads and xx,xxx kilometres (miles) of railways have been built. The country's difficult orography has represented a major problem to the development of Habasha's transportation network. The control by the Majulo-Cataian Canal Company of the so-called Majulo-Cataian Canal Territories from 1850 to 1964 meant that until 1997 these areas used a different rail gauge from the rest of the country, hampering the connection between the Habashi hinterland and the coastal areas and the world.
Various state-owned companies operate and maintain the Habashi road network. National roads and the country's network of highways is run by Bimeasku. County roads are maintained by regional operators owned by county governments. Local roads are built and maintained by municipalities. As of 2018, the total length of the Habashi road system is xx,xxx km (xx miles), of which 54% are paved. The number of vehicles driving on Habashi roads has greatly increased over the last 3 decades, with over 40 million vechicles registered as of 2017 and most likely several unregistered million more. The government is currently invested in the construction of a series of expressways around the major metropolitan areas to deal with the increase of traffic.
Habiba (ሐብባ), a state-owned enterprise runs the Habashi national railways. Gondar Central Station is the terminus of all major national railways. The majority of lines are single-tracked with the exception of the Gondar-Debre Marqos-Agordat line, which is quadruple, although there are plans to transform most conventional lines to double-track ones. As a part of the government's Vision 2035 plan, a high-speed train line will be created connecting Gondar with Debre Marqos, with construction set to begin in late 2019. Habiba also operates all the commuter trains and rapid transit lines in the country with the exception of Gondar and Selale. Instead, the Gondar Metropolitan Transport Corporation (GMTC) manages the integrated network of all public transportation in Gondar's metropolitan area including the Gondar Metropolitan MRT, the country's oldest and most extensive light rail system. The Jimma Municipality is currently studying the construction of Habasha's first metro system.
Domestic air transport is dominated by the national carrier, Biahaku, and two major private companies, Habashi Air and Mayayi. The country has 103 airports with 63 paved runways, in addition to 6 heliports. The busiest and more important airports are the Gondar International Airport and the Debre Marqos International Airport. Low-cost carriers have become prevalent since 2007, including xx, xx and xx.
The Majulan Canal is located in between Habasha and Kazhwir, serving as the boundary between both. The canal was built between 1850 and 1863 by Midrasian private investors thanks to the support of the xx Emirate which leased the land adjacent and between the xx and xx lakes. The territories surrounding the canal would be directly controlled by the Majulo-Cataian Canal Company until 1950 when it was nationalised. Today, it is controlled by a binational commission known as the Majulan Canal Authority.
The Majulan Canal is artificial sea-level waterway connecting the Asur Sea and the Decanian Sea. The canal allows for a reduction of the travel time for goods between Asura and Catai down to sixteen hours by eliminating the need to navigate around Majula and Arabekh. The Canal is a vital economic link, in 2017, 46 vessels traversed it per day, adding up to 16,790 vessels a year. The Canal has also served as an important economic hub for Habasha's economic development, by placing it in a position of acting as a major economic entrepôt.
Habasha's electricity distribution and productions markets are dominated by the state-owned Elkuko company, although some private thermal power plants and solar power plants do exist. The primary share of elecricty production in the country comes from various forms of renewable energies thanks to the country's optimal geographical situation and its orography. Hydropower, wind power and solar power constitute the vast majority of sources of renewable energy production. Of them, hydropower is the main source, providing 32% of the national electrical consumption. Reservoirs for hydroelectrical production also helps in setting up irrigation projects while buffering the impact of droughts. Thermal power plants (primarily oil and natural gas) provide 41% of the national electrical consumption.
The Habashi government is promoting the development an indigenous nuclear power, with the construction of the country's first nuclear power plant at xx completed in 2013, and another four plants set to be completed in 2021. Currently, the xx nuclear power plant provides 3% of the national electric consumption, although this number is expected to quintuple by 2025.
The xx Basin in north-eastern Habasha is a desert zone bordering Fahran where 4.1 trillion cubic feet natural gas underground reserves where found. Drilling began in 2017 with production set to begin by 2019. The majority of the production will be exported. These gas fields are managed by the state-owned Biyenko enterprise. Part of the profits will be reinvested into the development and research of a homegrown Photovoltaic and nuclear technological industry.
Habasha is a multicultural, multilingual and multi-ethnic society with an estimated population of 64.32 million people, the third largest population in Majula and 16th in the Aeia. The country's population growth rate was among the highest in Aeia during the first two thirds of the 20th century but has substantially decreased as a result of the demographic transition towards lower mortality and birth rates. As of 2013, the estimated fertility rate is 2.3.
The Habashi government recognises 52 major ethnic groups, on top of which there is an estimated number of 15 other minor ethnic groups. Of these, the most significant one is the Mehare people, who represent 36.74% of the population, or 23.6 million people. The Galla are the second largest group, with 16.2 million people, or 25.2% of the national population. The Mensai and Jeberti peoples make up 11.08% and 6.21% of the population respectively, or 7.1 and 3.99 million people each. Other major ethnic groups are: Sidama 4.1%, Danakil 4.07%, Wolamo 2.33%, Dhawamal 1.77% and Gamo at 1.53%. Other minor ethnic groups add up to 7.09% of the population.
The various major ethnic groups, with the exception of the Mehare, tend to live in ethnically and religiously homogeneous areas. The Sidamo, Wolamo and Gamo primarily inhabit the southern lowlands and some still follow a nomadic, pastoralist lifestyle. In coastal Habasha, the majority the population is Irsadic, with Jeberti settled primarily in the western half of the Medri Bahri, and Danakil and Dhawamal in the east.
Although culturally and linguistically close, the Mensai and Jeberti are not considered one single ethnic group as the overwhelming majority of Mensai live in the northern section of the Habashi Highlands whereas the Jeberti are more likely to live in the northern lowlands, close to the Irsadic majority coastal areas.
The Mehare are the most urbanised ethnic group, forming a majority of the population in all but one (Mekele) of the country's autonomous cities. As a result, many urban dwellers from other ethnic groups, particularly the Galla and Mensai are known to have assimilated with ethnic Mehare.
Habasha's various ethnic groups typically speak their own mother tongue within their communities. The 1972 Constitution recognises as official the sixty-seven languages of the country's 67 recognised ethnic groups, however, it only recognises five languages as working languages of the state. These are Mehare, Standard Galla, Mensai, Jeberti and Sidamo. Citizens in those counties and free cities where their ethnic group represents over 12% of the population are entitled to interact in their own language with state authorities. Mehare, the language of the homonymous ethnic group, the country's most numerous, has become the unofficial lingua franca of the rapidly-growing urban areas.
Most Habashi speak a language member of the !Afroasiatic language family from the Lisanic and Kermatic branches. The members of the former family, like Mehare, Mensai or Jeberti are predominantly spoken in the northern and central parts of the country and are, combined, the largest group by the number of speakers. The Kermatic languages are unevenly distributed, divided into two geographical areas, one northern, including the Danakil and the Dhawamal languages, which also extend into Fahran; and another in the south, comprised of the speakers of the Galla dialectal family - including standards Galla - and other minor languages like Sidamo.
Mehare, Jeberti and the majority of Habasha's Lisanic languages are written using the Giiz script, an abugida originally developed as an abjad in the 6th century BCE. Most of the languages spoken in the Medri Bahri, like Jeberti, Dhawamal and Danakil are written using the Gheiravic alphabet, as a result of the region's ties to Irsad and western Catai. A few languages, particularly those from the Galla dialect continuum, can be interchangeably written in Ge'ez or in the Fiorentine alphabet.
Habasha is a secular state that recognises freedom of religion as a constitutional right. Although Habasha is a Alydian-majority state, the country is home to a very large Irsadic minority which is geographically concentrated on the northern, coastal areas of the country. According to the 2016 census, over 35 million Habashis, or 55.1% of the population are affiliated to the Alydian faith. Of the 35 million, 30 are members of the Orthodox Church and 4.1 million are self-described Eucideans. The second largest religious denomination is Irsad, with about 18 million followers, or about 28.2% of the population. Habashi folk beliefs are followed by a small minority of the population, about 2.5 million people, of these, the Galla Waaq faith is by far the most important. There is a small minority of Ksaiists in the greater Gondar metropolitan area. 7.5 million Habashis, or 11.8% of the population are not religiously affiliated, of these, the majority (5.2 million) identify as atheist. The remaining 2.3 million identify as spiritual albeit not religious or agnostic.
Compared to the 2006 religious census, in 2016 the number of people who identify as non-religious had increased by 3 percentage points. This increase was particularly marked in large urban areas. It came mostly at the expense of the percentage of adherents to the Alydian faith, and to a lesser degree from more liberal schools of Irsad. The increasing secularisation of urban areas has been a common pattern in all censuses since the 1980s. Religious adherence and regular service attendance remain higher in rural areas and small cities.
Alydianism was brought to modern-day Habasha by Saint Edesius in the first century BCE and it spread quickly, becoming the official religion of the xx Kingdom after the conversion of xx. The spread of Irsad in the Medri Bahri reinforced Alydianism's relation with the Mehare and Mensai statelets, remaining the official state religion until 1970. To this day, over 80% of the Mehare and Mensai are Alydians. Alydians in Habasha are largely Orthodox, belonging to the Alydian Church in Habasha, led by the Primate of Jimma, Abuna Atnatewos. There is a significant minority of Eucideans in the western counties of xx, xx and xx. Although only a tenth of all Alydians, Eucideans are a culturally and politically influential group.
Irsadic practice is geographically concentrated in the northern third of Habasha, particularly in the coastal Medri Bahri region. Around 85% of all Habashi Muridins are followers of the Rafada school, followed by non-denominational Muridins. The Rafada branch consolidated in the xx and xx emirates in the 12th century CE, as the Jemir and Danakil emirs rejected the idea of subjugation to a foreign religious authority. There is a significant gap between rural and urban Irsadic areas in how religious observance is conducted. In the former, religious practices typically incorporate elements of pre-Irsadic faiths and of Alydianism as well as Irsadic mysticist elements, considered as traits of the Zikrist schools.
Since the so-called economic miracle began in 1970, Habasha has experience some of the highest urbanisation rates in Aeia. In 1970, only an estimated 22% of the Habashi population lived in urban areas. By 2018, this number had risen to 69%. An urban baby boom and rural exodus caused by the country's rapid industrialisation resulted in the development of large-scale slums during the 1970s and 1980s. In response, the government of Desta Yaqob launched in 1991 the Objective 2000 housing programme. Its goal, and that of its successor, was to reduce urban congestion and overcrowding in the major urban centers (Debre Marqos, Jimma, Adama, Mekele and especially Gondar) through a combination of slum clearance and an ambitious plan to build networks of planned commuter towns in the major cities' metropolitan areas. The result of this initiative was the development of new urban centers such as Furi and Entoto in the county of Selale, both located within 35 kilometres (21.7 miles) of Gondar. Since the 2000s, a combination of rising housing prices and public policy has pushed rural migration towards medium-sized urban areas, like Yesmala (North Dembiya).
Largest cities or towns in Habasha
|2||Debre Marqos||Debre Marqos||4,221,014||12||Furi||Selale||284,485|
As of 2018 is 93.8% of the population over age 15 is literate, up from 59.7% in 1970. Compulsory education runs from ages 6 to 16, and is provided by the government free of charge from ages 6 until 19. The number of primary and secondary schools has greatly increased over the last two decades with an average of 298 schools built every year in the 2000-2018 period. The Habashi government launched in 2012 a pilot programme in the Mocha county by offering vouchers for nurseries. As of 2017, the Habashi government spends 5.7% of the national GDP in the country's education system.
The Habashi education system is divided into four tiers: Primary education (6-12 years), lower secondary school (12-16 years), upper secondary school (16-19 years) and tertiary education. Upper secondary and tertiary education is divided between an academic pathway and a technical or vocational pathway. Around 55% of upper secondary school students attend institutions that use a TVET education methodology. Of the students who finish the lower secondary school, 63% of students continue their education by attending an upper secondary school, although this number falls to 52% in rural areas. In 2012, 78% of Habashi have received a secondary education.
Tertiary education in Habasha is available for both academic and vocational pathways, although it is not free of charge. Tuition fees are partially subsided by the government and entrance is free for students from a historically discriminated ethnic group with above-average grades in upper secondary school. Higher vocational education is provided by a network of state-run polytechnic universities, known as Nanetu (ብአምትይ, Biawmitiji). Enrollment rates for higher education have increased dramatically over the last three decades, with over 28 per cent of secondary graduates attending a higher education institution. The number of higher education institutions has expanded from 68 to 185 since 2000. The most important academic institutions are the National University of Gondar, the Metropolitan University of Jimma and the Technical University of the Medhri Bahri. A number of foreign universities operate satellite campuses in Habasha, including the Inostranic Institute, the King Almiro University or the Leidense National University.
Habasha has a two-tier univeral health care system, in which a public national healthcare insurance co-exists with private insurance. The private system is typically centred on urban areas and is typically equipped with advanced medical treatments, equivalent to those in Asura, catering to the urban middle and upper classes. Healthcare provision in rural areas, particularly in the far-south and certain valleys of Habasha remains problematic. To counter this issue, the Habashi government is expanding the coverage and number of clinics and has developed a system of primary telehealth. The public system suffers from shortages in the medical workforce, especially of highly-trained specialists. As a result, more specialised medical care and treatment are available only in large cities.
Habashi life expectancy at birth stands at 76.2 years for women and 72.9 for men (2011). Under-5 Infant mortality per 1000 live birth rate has greatly diminished over the last twenty years, currently standing at 11.8, a number slightly above that of most developed countries. Non-communicable diseases form the major burden of morbidity and mortality. Infectious diseases, like malaria and tuberculosis, together with traffic accidents represent important public health issues. Pollution is considered a major health risk as a result of the country's industry-driven economic growth, with an estimated 55,000 deaths per year caused by air pollution.
The Habashi media landscape is dominated by the state broadcaster, the Habashi Broadcasting Network (የሐበሻ የስርጭት አውታረ መረብ, HSAM). The Habashi government and the governing party, the Democratic People's Party, exercise direct or indirect control over the country's media. The Aeian Human Rights Monitor reports that the major private media networks, particularly in television, practice self-censorship. Besides HSAM, there are two major national private radio and television networks in Habasha, Canal 5 and Network 6. Canal 5 is typically considered more independent from the government, however, Network 6 is owned by Abadula Kamil, a businessman with close ties to the DPP. The major television networks usually broadcast in Mehare and Galla. The majority of HSAM's programming is in Mehare, however, there are two channels, H3 and H4 that broadcast in various minority languages.
The major newspapers in Habasha, like the Gazette of Gondar (ጎንደር ጋዜጣ, Gondar Gazeta) are owned by the government or by the governing Democratic People's Party, as is the case of the People's Voice (yeSewoch Dimitsi), the most widely circulated newspaper in the country. Some of the major opposition parties also have their own journals, which are openly sold alongside regular newspapers. Nevertheless, there is a greater degree of freedom to report in the written press than on radio and television, particularly for weekly or monthly magazines, like Saminiti, which are historically quite critical of the DPP.
Freedom of the press is limited by the Broadcasting Review Agency (ማሰራጨት ተቆጣጣሪ ቢሮ, Maserachet Tekotatari Biro, MTB), a regulatory body that has been routinely accused by international observers as well as by opposition parties of enforcing censorship. The Agency is tasked with the enforcement of the country's strict laws on ethnic or religious hate speech. The Council has reportedly employed this mandate to engage in political censorship by excluding critical media personalities and commentators from appearing in television and by censoring or shutting down opposition newspapers. Censorship in the Internet is very rare, and largely limited to a list of 115 pornographic sites.
Habashi cuisine typically consists of a mixture of vegetable and often spicy meat dishes in the form of a wat (also known as itto and tshebi), a type of stew served atop of injera sourdough flat bread, made from fermented teff or sorghum flours. Due to religious reasons, large numbers of Alydian Habashis practice fasting excluding animal products on religiously-mandated occassions, up to twice a week. More extreme forms of fasting, like following a fully vegetarian or vegan diet is not uncommon, and this dietary preference is practiced by about a quarter of the country's population.
Typically, the wat will be made of beef, lamb, vegetables and various types of legumes, and in the north, occassionally fish. Most dishes will incorporate a spicy powdered seasoning mix. Although they greatly vary, there are two main types, berbere, consisting of powdered chili pepper with other spices; and mitmita, containing piri piri, cardamom seeds, cloves and salt. Particularly in the centre of the country, a type of clarified butter, known as niter kibbeh is a fundamental element of traditional cooking.
The ingredients used in Habashi dishes vary significantly from region to region. Traditionally, dishes in northernmost Habasha are lighter in composition, replacing seasoned butter with vegetables such as tomatoes and also incorporate fish and occasionally seafood. Southern Habasha incorporates false banana plant, pulverised into flour then mixed to make bread-like product known as kocho. Kocho often replaces injera as the staple bread in the Gurage-majority parts of the country.
Cofee-drinking is likely to have originated from Habasha. As such, coffee (buna) plays an important role in social life in Habasha. The coffee ceremony (bunna maflat) is the traditional serving of coffee, usually after a big meal, accompanied by sweet and savoury snacks. Typical alcoholic beverages are fermented and include tella, a type of beer brewed from teff or sorghum; and tej, a kind of honey wine made from honey and gesho.
Public holidays in Habasha have mostly a religious origin, usually being associated, depending in the county, with either the Alydian or the Irsadic faiths. There are a total of 17 national holidays every year, of both secular and religious nature. The 5 secular holidays are the same throughout the country, with the exception of the one day allocated to local festivities. These are the National Day or yeAgeritu Ken (የአገሪቱ ቀን) on the 11 October, which celebrates the mythical creation of the first Habashi state, the Begwena by Queen Gudit in the year 178 BCE; the Constitution Day or Higemengisti Ken (ህገመንግስት ቀን) (4 September), the anniversary of the approval of the country's current constitution in 1972. The other two public feats are the International Workers' Day (1 May) as well as New Year's Eve (31 December).
In those counties where the majority of the population is Alydian, traditional Alydian festivities are followed. These include the yeTekeberu Getsitawoch (February 29), a major festival dedicated to all aspects of the Alydian deity and the days dedicated to the various aspects, like the Day of Tellus (የዙፋኑ ቀን, yeZufanu Ken) on March 1, the Day of Soteria (የመዳን ቀን, yeMedan Ken) on April 1 or the days of Gibresenay (2 September), Kokeb (1 October), Achekamaki (2 December). Likewise, coinciding with the summer solstice and the September equinox two major festivals are held, the Kidus Isat and the Gebere respectively. The Kidus Isat is generally considered one of the major Habashi festivals, involving the lightning of torches and the celebration of open air concerts and other activities involving music in veneration of the Muse (Mezeriman in Mehare).
The Irsadic areas of the country, however, allocate their religious festivities differently. The main festivities include the Day of Freedom (يوم الحرية, yawm alhuriya, in Gheiravic) on 7 April, commemorating the separation of the Rafadas from the tutelage of Caliph xx in xxxx CE.
Football is by far the most popular sport in Habasha. The national team, known as the Northern Lions (የሰሜን አንበሶች, yeSemen Anbesoch) is the oldest one in Majula. The Majulan national football team is ranked xxth by the FFA. Football was first introduced by Midrasian Majulan Canal staff in the 1920s and quickly gained in popularity. Football in Habasha is organised by the Habashi Football Federation (HFF), which runs the country's domestic football league system, topped by the National League (ብሄራዊ ግር ኳስ ዋንጫ, Biherawi Kwasi Wanicha), the oldest league in Majula, created in 1941 and composed of 15 teams. The Mechale FC is the most succesful team in the history of Habashi football, having won the National League on 24 occassions and the Majulan Football Cup in xx occassions. Other major teams include the Gejeret FC or the Tomogo Adama Club. Noted Habashi football players include Hagos Tesfamichael and xx.
Other popular sports in Habasha include basketball and track and field, particularly medium-distance and long-distance running. Basketball was first introduced to the country in 1903 although it only gained popularity in the 1990s. Since them, Habasha has had one of the top basketball teams in Majula and the continent's strongest basketball division in the Zemenawi Basketball League. Habasha's renowned athletics programme has resulted in the country winning a large number of gold medals in the Olympics in long distance running. In particular, Kidane Gebremariam became world-famous in 2014 by breaking the marathon world record. Every year, the Habashi Ministry of Youth and Sports organises the Tour of Habasha, an athletic competition consisting of various endurance races throughout the country.
More recently, e-sports, or competitive video game gaming, have become widely popular with the Habashi youth. The video gaming scene has developed a structure akin to traditional sports, with the rise of professional players and fandoms, and is regulated by the HeSA.