In December 2014, the International School Network visited the Embassy of Ethiopia to interview Ambassador Markos T. Rike about his country.
Ethiopia is a landlocked country in East Africa, with a culture of diverse ethnicities. Over 80 independent languages are spoken in the country. The Ambassador commented that it is important for the people to recognize and accommodate the beauty of diversity. The official language of Ethiopia is Amharic, yet different regions of Ethiopia have their own official languages, and the children are taught at schools in their mother tongues. The people in Ethiopia use a unique calendar and time system, different from the Gregorian calendar, which is widely used in the West.
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Ethiopian families are highly extended, and the people value supporting their family members. As the founding country of coffee, people socialize with their friends, neighbors, and relatives by drinking coffee together. The Ambassador commented that the sound of grinding coffee beans will automatically invite neighbors over to the house. We were served very delicious coffee at the embassy.
Injera is a popular food eaten in Ethiopia. Grain is the staple food of the country. Raw meat is also widely eaten by the people.
Ethiopia has many religious sites, mostly of Christian and Muslim. As a secular country, Christian and Muslim people have been living in harmony together for hundreds of years, as they intertwine in many Ethiopian families. Ge’ez is an ancient script that is still in use today, as it has been preserved by consistent documentation in churches.
There are 15 national parks in Ethiopia. Ethiopia has high mountain ranges, lakes, and depressions. The country also has a large diversity of animals, including mammals, birds, and fish.
The photos above show the production of coffee in Ethiopia.
Ethiopia is host to airlines that connect several African countries. Ethiopia is one of the first African countries to join several organizations. The country is currently working for the construction of an airline to connect the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa, directly to Japan.
Ethiopia and Japan have had very good relations. Embassies were made in both countries in early stages. The royal families of both countries shared excellent relations. Recent relations between the two countries are shown through product exchange, as Japanese cars are popular in Ethiopia, and Ethiopian coffee is popular in Japan.
The Ambassador wishes to bring a stronger connection between Ethiopia and Japan. He has mentioned that he wishes to deepen the understanding of Ethiopia in the Japanese community, and that he would like bring Ethiopian products such as flowers and sesame to Japan as well as bringing Japanese technology and businesses to Ethiopia.
(Reported by Madoka Nishina)
Madoka Nishina 11th Saint Maur International School
Karen Nishina 5th Saint Maur International School
Moe Onishi 5th Saint Maur International School