Situated in East Africa along the shores of the Red Sea, Eritrea was involved in a 30-year struggle before winning independence in 1991 in response to a rebel victory over Ethiopian forces. As members of the National Service, women, including some who were pregnant, fought alongside men. Seven years later, the two countries were at war again over a contested border, but international brokering of the conflict has been unsuccessful. In the 21st century, less than a fourth of the population is urbanized. Ethnically, Eritreans tend to be either Tigrinya (50 percent) or Tigre and Kunama (40 percent). There is more diversity in religion, as Eritreans identify as Muslim, Coptic Christian, Roman Catholic, or Protestant.

Although the government of the Eritrean People's Liberation Front is committed ...

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