From Bagni di Lucca to Eritrea: Participation & Development opens a new home
November 13, 2017 by Andrea Cosimini
They left on October 25, with a flight taken off from Rome, to Cairo, Egypt, and then to Asmara Airport, the capital of Eritrea, the destination of their trip.
An expedition funded by the Partecipazione & Sviluppo association, Bagni di Lucca's on-site management of asylum seekers in the area, led by Marcello Marchi, chairman of the Lucca-Massaua association A long bridge, featuring eight students from the Lucca schools, two of the geometry institutes and six of the agrarians, accompanied by Professor Franco Grossi.
Their stay in Eritrea lasted until November 5th. Here the boys could see with their own eyes, and touch with their hand, as they really live in one of those African countries that are often represented by international media as one of the places not to be visited despite the deep bond between our nation and Eritrea.
"Eritrea," commented Alessandro Ghionzoli, president of the Partnership and Development section, "is described in various sites such as" North Korea in Africa. "But that is not the case, the situation is critical. an embargo that has lasted for fifteen years and the rulers are accused of supporting Somali fundamentalist militias, but we have been freely on the streets, no problem, seeing armed people in one circumstance and alarming when Al Jazeera broadcasted the same that day that there were 28 dead.The news was also reported in Italy, from authoritative newspapers such as La Repubblica and Corriere della Sera, but then we found with surprise that it was a fake news. "
"We were there," continued Ghionzoli, "to see the situation with our eyes and understand." Although the Farnesina did not recommend visits to Eritrea, we are Italians and have a connection with this land. the largest in the world outside the country, with 1,300 pupils, and is the one that provides the best preparation throughout Eritrea. It is under the direct dependence of the Ministry of Education, but there is still no presidency unfortunately In our small, then, we try to make an appeal. "
Participation & Development has decided, following this visit, to open its own headquarters in Eritrea, to Asmara, a guest in the premises made available by Club Bologna, an association of Eritreans who supported the struggle for independence of their people from abroad.
"Our association - said Ghionzoli - with the opening of the new headquarters, wants to propose development projects that are bilateral, Eritrean students need virtually everything, but they do not ask for money but only training courses. who can teach them a job. Asmara has a secretary of reference for our association. "
Upon arrival in Eritrea, Lucca's delegation, which also hosted Oriano Landucci and Donatella Buonriposi, was received by Kelati Tewelde of the Marine Resources Ministry of Eritrea.
"Eritrea is a beautiful land with a very high potential," said Ghionzoli. "From Massaua to Asmara there is a difference of 2,400 meters and many are the riches of the subsoil: oil, oil, potassium. There are four different religions living together: from Islam to Catholics, to Coptic Christians and Protestants, but outside of these religions, however, they are not allowed anymore, but these four, in any case, live together in total peace: There is no drug in Eritrea and criminality, and the eritree women are beautiful. In the evening they go around alone and are dressed and dressed just like our women. "
"The Italians - finally concluded Ghionzoli - are well-seen, although there are now a few hundred, but many understand the Italian and speak it." On the spot we could see the real problems of this beautiful land: the embargo was received, and then the non-respect by the neighboring Ethiopia of the Treaty of Algiers establishing borders with Eritrea. "
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