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Eritrean Railway


In 1885 the Italian army took possession of a coastline of Eritrea. Gained the important port city of Massawa, which becomes the temporary capital of the Italian possession, control extends inland. The construction of the railway started in 1887 by Italian troops from the port of Massawa. Work proceeded to stumps and arrived in Asmara in 1911 placed 2300 meters above sea level and 120 km from Massawa. In these 120 Km Italians produce 65 bridges and 39 tunnels dug to create a true masterpiece of technique and engineering. Especially the last kilometers from Asmara Arbaroba the succession of tunnels, bridges and spiral curves on the walls are loaded into a rocky path and the breathtaking view from the window is of rare beauty. The first locomotives came from the factory of Ansaldo Breda in Milan and Genoa, did the 35 Km per hour. From the factories of Fiat in 1934, arrived in Asmara two Littorina with the petrol engine with 120 horses and 50 Km per hour maximum speed. In 1935 the railroad reached its maximum extension to Biscia towards the Sudanese border. In 1941 the British occupied Eritrea after defeating the Italian troops in Keren. The railroad was dismantled between Agordat and Biscia by the British. In 1952 the British leave Eritrea. And this was annexed to Ethiopia, but this thing will never be accepted by the Eritreans. Since 1962, there were thirty years of civil war to regain the independence of Eritrea. In recent years the railroad fell into disrepair and the services ended in the late seventies when the whole line was dismantled. In 1993 Eritrea declared its independence, the new president Isaias Afewerki put as priority the reconstruction of the country's railway. Reconstruction started in 1995 by the old railwaymen and the army and in 2004 the line between Asmara and Massawa was completely reactivated.


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