Over 200 Arrested in Eritrean Riot in Germany


A riot broke out Saturday at an Eritrean cultural festival in Stuttgart, Germany.

  • The celebration, organized by supporters of the Eritrean government, ran afoul when anti-government protesters clashed with event organizers.
  • When about 300 German police intervened, the protesters attacked them with baseball bats, nails, metal rods and other weapons.
  • 27 police officers were injured—some of them hospitalized.
  • 228 Eritrean rioters were arrested.

Similar riots have been occurring at other Eritrean cultural events recently.

  • On September 2, about 170 people were injured in clashes between police and Eritrean rioters in Tel Aviv, Israel.
  • On August 3, nearly 1,000 Eritrean protesters almost broke past a police barrier in a similar riot near Stockholm, Sweden.
  • On July 8, Eritreans clashed with police at another cultural event gone awry near Frankfurt, Germany.

Why the clashes? Since gaining independence from Ethiopia in 1993, Eritrea has been ruled as a totalitarian regime by dictator Isaias Afwerki. In 2021, Reporters Without Borders (rsf) ranked Eritrea 180/180 in its annual Press Freedom Index—a worse ranking than North Korea’s at the time.

Analysts estimate Eritrean prisons hold roughly 10,000 political prisoners. rsf’s profile on Eritrea shows what life under Afwerki is like:

Eritrea is one of the poorest countries in the world and the economy has been brought to its knees. … Eritrean society has lived in fear for two decades. Dissidents are arrested or forced to flee abroad, and freedom of expression is nonexistent. … Surveillance is permanent and ubiquitous.

The Eritrean government sponsors cultural events abroad to increase foreign support. Critics say these events are about brainwashing the Eritrean diaspora on the truth of the regime. The event in Sweden, which occurs annually, is rumored to bring millions of Swedish kronor (tens of thousands of dollars) to the Eritrean government.

Germany’s response: The German government is not taking the Stuttgart clash lightly. German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser called the riot a “foreign conflict” and called on the perpetrators to be held to account.

What prophecy says: Daniel 11:40-43 prophesies of a coming clash between “the king of the north,” a German-led united Europe, and “the king of the south,” a radical Islamist bloc led by Iran. Verse 43 shows countries that will be allied with Iran against Germany. One of these is Ethiopia.

Whoever heavily influences or controls Ethiopia will undoubtedly also control the small areas of Eritrea and Djibouti on the Red Sea coastline. These areas only recently became independent of Ethiopia. Also, I believe the Bible view is that these small areas are a part of Ethiopia.
—Gerald Flurry, Trumpet editor in chief, The King of the South

Eritrea doesn’t make the international news cycle often. But Bible prophecy shows it will soon become a greater problem for Germany. And Germany will eventually do something about it.

Learn more: Read The King of the South.