The Democratic Republic of Harrawi is a small country in north-east Africa, bordering Djibouti and Ethiopia in the west, Somalia in the south and the Gulf of Aden in the north-east. The country's capital is Oryaa. The origins of the Harrawi people can be traced back to Asia Minor. Harrawi became an independent sultanate in 1978 after centuries of Osman and British rule, but the ruling sultans were deposed in 2002 and since then, the country has been a republic. The incumbent president is Hupilulyum Yepreshias, who was elected in 2015.
- Main Article: History of Harrawi
The area that is now called Harrawi used to be an important trade link between the Mediterranean civilisations, Africa and India. The present day Harrawi people are believed to be descendants of a people related to the Hittites (Hatti) that at some point moved south and settled in the Horn of Africa. The Harrawi language is mostly considered to be Indo-European, of the otherwise extinct Anatolian branch, although it developed in its own way during many centuries.
From 1702 to 1788, Harrawi was part of the Ottoman empire, after many centuries during which the Harrawi were at times independent or ruled by neighbouring peoples. In 1788 Harrawi regained independence under sultan Brayim I and his successors. In 1875 nine years of Egyptian rule followed, and after that it was more or less liberated by the British, who turned Harrawi into a protectorate. The sultans remained in power as puppet rulers.
From 1940 to 1941, the country was briefly occupied by Italian forces, but the country was quickly reconquered by the British. In 1960 British Somaliland, with which Harrawi had been forming one administrative area for some time, becomes independent, but Harrawi remains under British rule until 1978. In that year, Harrawi becomes an independent sultanate; the ruling family gains a lot of power in the young nation, especially under sultan Brayim IV, who establishes some sort of an absolute monarchy. In 2001 Brayim IV dies and a year later his son, sultan Faysau, is overthrown during a short revolution, after which the republic is proclaimed. Sultan Faysau is forced to leave the country; he and his family have reportedly been living in Egypt since.
In Harrawi live slightly more than one million people, 297,000 of which reside in the capital. Other important cities are Hurunn (ca. 226,000 inhabitants), Malaa (142,000), Erim (131,000) and Neesh (110,500). The country is divided in ten provinces. The larger part of the Harrawi people consists of ethnic Harrawi (86%), but there are also Arabs (5%), British (3%), Somali (2%) and Afar (2%). The Harrawi language is the official language of the country, but Arab, English, Somali and Afar can be heard as well on a regular basis. Some 71% of the Harrawi know how to read and write and 96% is muslim (sunnite).
Harrawi has two universities (in Oryaa and Malaa). National holidays are 15 April (Day of Democracy), 30 May (Independence Day, since 1978) and 6 October (Founding of the Republic, since 2002). The Harrawi national anthem is: Way'arai, su nass Harraay (Awaken, people of Harrawi) and was written by Muwasau Tusalyiabon (1937 - 2005).
Harrawi is divided in ten provinces (peeyet, sing. peyet), most of which carry the name of their capitals. The provinces are divided in municipalities; each settlement is considered a municipality. Neither the provinces nor the municipalities are powerful political bodies, as many things below the national level are taken care of by the clans of Harrawi.
|#||Harrawi name||English name||Short name||Capital||Inhab. (2019)|
|1||Peyet Oryaa||Province of Oryaa||Oryaa||Oryaa||305,223|
|2||Peyet Huruunn||Province of Hurunn||Hurunn||Hurunn||245,380|
|3||Peyet Harraay Samaau||Province of North-Harrawi||North-Harrawi||Erim||160,991|
|4||Peyet Puuns||Province of Puntland||Puntland||Puns||23,044|
|5||Peyet Malaa||Province of Malaa||Malaa||Malaa||161,242|
|6||Peyet Yausaa||Province of Yausaa||Yausaa||Yausaa||210,521|
|7||Peyet Waau||Province of Waau||Waau||Waau||25,032|
|8||Peyet Harraay Yanuub||Province of South-Harrawi||South-Harrawi||Bumaa||15,662|
|9||Peyet Yerusaa||Province of Yerusa||Yerusa||Yerusa||29,046|
|10||Peyet Heleeg||Province of Heleg||Heleg||Heleg||24,337|
- Main Article: Politics of Harrawi
The most important institute in Harrawi is the parliament (the Yeshaa Eengatare or 'Chamber of Deputies'). Parliamental elections are held at least every four years, although the seat division doesn't change very much thanks to the connection between the major political parties and the clan system. A governing coalition is formed by parties that have a majority in parliament. The parliament appoints the prime minister, who then forms a government that has to be approved by the parliament. The parliament also appoints the country's president for a six year term.
The supreme command of the Harrawi army lies in a dialogue between parliament (represented by the chairman) and the heads of the three divisions (army, navy and airforce). Parliament is considered to be a coordinating institution in this matter, but the day-to-day business is normally put in the hands of the defense ministry.
The army's equipment is in a condition of 'continuous improvement', as it is officially called by the ministry. This means that since 2003, the ministry has been trying to modernise the antiquated stock, which doesn't proceed very fast. Many supplies that normally service other sectors of society and the economy (such as harbours, factories and sometimes also residential areas) have a secundary military function and can be requisitioned by the army. Most of the equipment was acquired through South-Yemen from the Soviet Union in the eighties.
Geography and climate
Harrawi has the same climate as the surrounding countries. It is hot and dry, and rain falls very irregularly. The country isn't very suitable for intensive agriculture, so extensive agriculture and cattle-breeding is more common. Relatively many inhabitants of Harrawi live in the cities. The highest point of Harrawi is the Yaumaa Hushuun or Hushun for short, a mountain of 1516 meters high. It lies east of the capital Oryaa, in the province of South-Harrawi. The two other named mountains are called Yaumaa Eepiyoon or Eepiyon (915 m.), also east of Oryaa, but in the province of North-Harrawi; and Yaumaa Boosaau or Boosau (873 m.), in the province of Malaa. Apart from the small mountain range to which these mountains belong, Harrawi is rather flat.
A number of smaller islands are also part of Harrawi. In the west, there is a small archipelago called sh'Wei Naas sh'Nabeey or 'The Prophet's Four Islands', consisting of four large and several smaller islands that are part of the province of Hurunn. In the north, there is the Nas er'Raash, 'The King's Island' or 'The Sultan's Island', and in the east there is the Nas Hason or the 'Red Island'. None of these islands are permanently inhabited, although fishermen use them regularly. The Nas er'Raash is army property.
The country also contains the centuries old city of Malaa, which is already mentioned in the Periplus Maris Erythraei, some kind of gps-system in times that there weren't any human constructed satellites to navigate with. The country is flat and has little heights, but has been well defendable against foreign invasions by numerous fortifications along the coast and, more impressive, the Wall of Waau, which originally extended between the city of Waau through Bumaa until Yerusa, but which now has partly collapsed or demolished. The unofficial neighbouring country of Somaliland thinks that this wall should be the official border with Harrawi, and that Harrawi illegally occupies the scarsely populated area outside this wall. In 1992 an armed conflict almost escalated between the two countries, but neither party went through with it and the Somalilandic claim currently only exists on paper.
The Harrawi currency is the kush, which, apart from a small relapse in 2001-2002, has been relatively stable for thirty years. At this moment the kush has a value of slightly more than US$0.03. In 2018 there was an inflation rate of 4.5% and an unemployment rate of 5,8%.
Since the war between Ethiopia and Eritrea which resulted in independence for the latter, the attraction of Harrawi and Somalilandic harbours by Ethiopia has risen strongly. Berbera (Somaliland) and Hurunn (Harrawi) benefit from the transit trade from and to Ethiopia. But for other countries too, Harrawi is an excellent transshipment location. In Harrawi itself a modest amount of oil is gained.
Harrawi has been benefiting as well from the international hunt on tax paradises; as western countries that had a bank secret, had to change the rules so that they didn't loose their international reputation, the financial system of Harrawi hasn't become much more transparant. The government did take however some (according to critics very weak) measures in order to satisfy some western countries. That a number of Harrawi banks has some dubious clients, is a public secret, and according to the named critics this number has but grown since the international financial crisis.
Tourism is a expanding industry in Harrawi too. Already in the eighties some holiday colonies rose at the beaches of the Gulf of Aden around the city of Shamary. These colonies are forbidden for ordinary Harrawi citizens, because they could affect the islamic innocence of civilians, according to the government. The ministry of tourism tries to improve the interest in the urban culture of Harrawi: apart from the capital of Oryaa, the cities of Malaa and Puns, both in the eastern part of the country, are known as tourist attractions.
Transport and infrastructure
In 2006 a four lane highway between Oryaa and Erim was completed. There already were some good highways between Oryaa and Hurunn as well as from Oryaa, through Bumaa until half-way Waau. The latter is the connection to the Somalilandic city of Berbera, which eventually should have four lanes along the entire distance. Between Malaa and Yausaa too, there is a small amount of four lane highway. Between Oryaa and Malaa there is a regular bus connection of two times a day. From Oryaa in the west and Malaa in the east, buses drive more frequently to smaller towns in their respective regions.
In the west there is a railway connecting Heleg, Yerusa and Oryaa. There are plans for a railway connection between Oryaa and Malaa as well as between Oryaa and Erim, but it seems improbable that these will be finished within ten years from now.
There are ferries between Hurunn and Heleg, and internationally between Hurunn and Djibouti and between Hurunn or Erim to Obock (Djibouti). From Malaa, Yausaa and Neesh you can reach Berbera by ship. From 1992 to 2004 there also was a ferry connection between Hurunn, Erim and Aden, but this has been cancelled.
From Oryaa there are frequent connections by air with Cairo, Nairobi and the Arab Emirates (Dubai and Sharjah) and, closer to home, with Sanaa, Aden, Addis Abeba and Khartoum. In Europe is Paris (Orly) a common destination, but most of the Harrawi aircraft are on a European blacklist.
The three most important newspapers in Harrawi are:
- sh'Wegunu Harrayoom (The Harrawi Times)
- e'Saut sh'Naass (The Voice of the People)
- esh'Umury (The Republic)
Officially, the ministry of education of Harrawi is responsible for education and normally has 10% to 15% of the nation's budget allocated to this end. There are however some private schools, mostly based on islamic values, that manage to organise their own funding. Students of European and American origin normally attend the international school in Oryaa.
As in many other countries, the Harrawi school system consists of three stages. The first six years of the eight year primary school are mandatory; the rest of the educational traject is optional and in practice hardly 20% of the students who complete the first six years continue their scholastic instruction. In the first six years there are eight compulsory subjects: Harrawi language, Arab language (starting in year 4), Islamic studies, mathematics, science (including e.g. biology and agriculture), social studies (including e.g. history and geography), arts and crafts and physical education (gymnastics, health care). The instruction language is Harrawi, except in the Arab language lessons and Islamic studies. In the seventh and eight year, English language is added to the curriculum. The primary school is intended for pupils between 5 and 11/13 years old.
The secondary school normally lasts four or five years for students aged 13 to 17/18. Mandatory subjects taught in this stage include: Harrawi, Arab and English languages, mathematics, physics, chemistry, biology, geography, history and Islamic studies. Optional subjects include: French; Somali; Amharic; economics and business studies; music, literature and arts; physical education. Due to lack of students, not all optional subjects can be followed everywhere. Harrawi is the instruction language of all subjects except the language subjects and Islamic Studies.
After completing the secondary level, students may choose to continue their education at a so called 'technical school' or at a university. Harrawi has two universities: the State University of Oryaa and the Islamic University of Malaa, and two technical schools, in Oryaa and Neesh, the latter having a branch in Puns if enough students apply.
- Main Article: Harrawi (language)
The Harrawi language is an Indo-European language with a Hitite background. During the last centuries it has been influenced by Somalian, Amharic and most importantly Arabic. In more recent times, Italian and English loanwords have been added to the language.