Egypt – Ethiopia Protracted Battles: Espionage, Cyber Warfare, and Attempts on Ex-Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn’s Life

The escalating tension between Egypt and Ethiopia, characterized by espionage, cyber warfare, and diplomatic strain, has deep historical roots. This article provides an in-depth analysis, spanning from 2013 to 2023, of the intricate and longstanding animosity between these nations.

Throughout these events, Egypt has consistently refuted involvement or culpability, often claiming those accused of cyber espionage were merely tourists or journalists. In contrast, Ethiopia has steadfastly maintained that it possesses incontrovertible evidence linking Egypt to various subversive activities, thereby justifying its actions to safeguard national security.

Key Incidents:

  1. May 2013 – Inadvertent Live TV Revelation:
  • Participants: Egyptian political figures, including Younis Makhyoun and Ayman Nour.
  • Location: During a live TV broadcast.
  • Details: In a notable lapse, Egyptian politicians were overheard on live TV discussing strategies to undermine Ethiopia’s GERD project. These strategies included supporting Ethiopian insurgents and contemplating a military strike.
  • Result: This gaffe sparked a diplomatic conflict and led to an official apology from Egypt.
  1. May 2014 – Abobo Dam Incident:
  • Arrestees: Three Egyptian nationals.
  • Location: Near Ethiopia’s dam facilities.
  • Details: Ethiopian authorities apprehended three Egyptians, alleging their involvement in intelligence gathering related to Ethiopia’s dam infrastructure.
  • Result: Egypt denied the accusations, asserting the individuals were tourists, not spies.
  1. December 2014 – Drone Surveillance Incident:
  • Detainees: Three Egyptians and an Ethiopian.
  • Location: GERD project site.
  • Details: Ethiopian authorities arrested individuals for allegedly using a drone to spy on the GERD, on behalf of Egyptian intelligence.
  • Result: The incident escalated diplomatic tensions, with Ethiopia’s claims clashing with Egypt’s denials.
  1. July 2017 – Assassination Plot Allegations:
  • Arrestees: Two Egyptians and two Ethiopians.
  • Location: Ethiopia.
  • Details: Ethiopian authorities arrested four individuals for allegedly plotting to assassinate Ethiopian officials, including former PM Hailemariam Desalegn.
  • Result: Egypt dismissed these allegations as baseless, accusing Ethiopia of inciting hostility against Egypt.
  1. January 2019 – GERD Project Surveillance:
  • Detainees: Egyptians Mohamed Ahmed Ibrahim and Mahmoud Afifi.
  • Details: They were accused of espionage at the GERD project since 2017.
  • Result: Egypt’s denial further strained relations, as Ethiopia insisted on the credibility of its accusations.
  1. January 2020 – Cyberattack on GERD and Financial Institutions:
  • Target: Ethiopian financial institutions and GERD.
  • Details: Ethiopia thwarted cyberattacks aimed at disrupting its financial sector and dam project, with suspicions directed towards Egypt and its allies.
  • Result: The incident heightened concerns about foreign interference in Ethiopia’s key projects.
  1. October 2020 – Propaganda Allegations Against Egyptian Embassy:
  • Accuser: Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
  • Details: Ethiopia accused the Egyptian embassy of spreading misleading information about the GERD.
  • Result: The allegation perpetuated ongoing diplomatic disputes over the dam’s construction.
  1. June 2020 – Cyber Espionage Accusations:
  • Accused: Egyptian intelligence and “Cyber Horus.”
  • Details: Ethiopian media reported cyberattacks by an Egyptian-affiliated group aiming to create unrest in Ethiopia.
  • Result: Ethiopia’s countermeasures reportedly foiled these attacks, but Egypt did not officially respond.


  1. February 2021 – Cyberattack on Ethiopian Airlines:
    • Target: Ethiopian Airlines’ online services.
    • Details: A cyberattack disrupted the airline’s booking and payment systems, raising concerns over data security.
    • Result: The airline restored services and assured customers about data security, though the attack’s origins remained speculative.
  2. April 2021 – Cyberattack on Ethiopian Electric Power:
    • Target: EEP’s website.
    • Details: The cyberattack displayed a threatening message related to the GERD, indicating political motivations.
    • Result: EEP responded by enhancing website security and investigating the incident.


  1. “Africa’s Evolving Cyber Threats” – Insight into Africa’s cyber threat landscape.
  2. “Ethiopia Situation Report: 18 July 2022” – Comprehensive report on Ethiopia, including espionage and cyber conflicts.
  3. “Ethiopia Accuses Egypt of Conducting Cyber Attacks on Key Institutions” – Ethiopia’s allegations against Egypt regarding cyberattacks.
  4. “Ethiopia: Cyberattacks from Egypt targeting the works of Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam foiled” – Specific instance of alleged cyberattacks by Egypt.
  5. “Ethiopian Airlines says it foiled cyber attack


Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest

2 thoughts on “Egypt – Ethiopia Protracted Battles: Espionage, Cyber Warfare, and Attempts on Ex-Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn’s Life”

  1. of course like your website but you have to check the spelling on several of your posts A number of them are rife with spelling issues and I in finding it very troublesome to inform the reality on the other hand I will certainly come back again

  2. Your site loads so quickly that it nearly looks like you’re using a special technique. You are an extremely talented webmaster. You’ve done a great job with this; the contents are outstanding.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

On Key

Related Posts

VK Russian online social media and social networking service

© 2022 Esleman Abay. All rights reserved.

Follow Us