|Premier of the Democratic People's Republic of Aferi|
|Assumed office |
December 12 2015
|Preceded by||Hailemariam Simene|
|Minister of Defence|
10 March 2011 – December 12 2015
|Born|| Safia Benesse|
15 March 1978 (age: 29)
Amiras Adan, Aferi
|Political party||Aferi Worker's Revolutionary Front|
|Spouse(s)||Ahmed Menkir (since 2013)|
|Alma mater||Adulis State Academy|
|Religion||Aferi Orthodox Christian|
|Allegiance||Aferi People's Defence Force|
|Years of service||7|
Safia Menkir (née Benesse)is the current premier of the Democratic People's Republic of Aferi. She was elected by the Central Comittee the Aferi Worker's Revolutionary Front on the twelfth of December 2015 after the death of Hailemariam Simene. A devoted communist, she was deemed to be the candidate who was best suited to the task due to her intelligence, military service record and revolutionary ideals. She was the first woman to hold the position of Premier, and the youngest, being only 27 at the time.
Early Life and Education
Safia was born in Amiras Adan, a small town in the Seher province. Her parents were farmers who were freed from serfdom after the revolution and due to their gratitude to the communist ideology she was raised to be a member of the Aferi Worker's Revolutionary Front. At the age of five she joined the Young Revolutionaries, the youth wing of the party, and was regarded by superiors as a shining example to the other members of her local wing. She began schooling at the same time, but the local school was poorly run and the teachers were not well trained. Realising that her abilities were going to waste, Luca Yemenkai, the head of her local Young Revolutionaries wing, requested she be transferred to the State Academy of Academia in Adulis. The transfer was accepted and she moved to Adulis. By all accounts her studies were successful, constantly placing in the top five of the class.
With her successful academic record and ideological beliefs, Safia was guaranteed entrance to a good university. She chose to attend Adulis State University due to its highly acclaimed Political Science department. She majored in Political Science, and did papers in International Relations, French Language and in Marine Biology. She gained excellent marks in all these subjects except for French, which she failed due to a lack of study. She was well liked on campus, making friends easily. This popularity and her natural charm helped we be elected to the university's Kebele, which gave her good political experience. She was poised to go on and do a doctorate, when the war began in Dégri and she joined the army to become an officer.
Joining the Army
Safia joined the army in September 2001, after the Sefo Pass Massacre. She enrolled at the Adulis officer's academy and used her links with the party to gain immediate entrance. The Aferi People's Army was lacking in officers after an overhaul to tej chain of command and so the course was accelerated to provide as much information and experience as possible into a short amount of time. After a strenuous seven month course she graduated as a second lieutenant an was posted to Dégri to lead a thirty man infantry platoon.
- Main article: Dégri War
The Dégri War was Safia's first real combat experience. As a lieutenant she led a platoon and was posted in Eastern Dégri, where fearsome fighting was occurring between the Islamic Fundamentalist Islamawi Jihadi and government forces. Her first taste of combat experience came on the 30th of April 2002, when she led her platoon out into the hilly highland region to try find enemy artillery positions. They found a mortar emplacement and took it out, managing to do so without alerting any other insurgents in the area. They then discovered a network of tunnels through the hills. Having foun more than they were looking for, Safia's platoon returns to base and gave the coordinates of the tunnels to HQ. the next day a battalion of Aferi Government soldiers attacked the tunnels and managed to defeat the insurgent force. This victory was very important for the stability of the region, but was also a necessary morale booster after the Sefo Pass Massacre. Safia was awarded the Red Star of Bravery first class, and promoted to a full lieutenant.
Safia stayed in Eastern Dégri for two years with reasonable distinction. Her platoon gained a reputation for their bravery and skill, with comments made about the ability of their leader. On the fifteenth of august 2003 her company was attacked by insurgents while they were mustering at Altahi Airbase and several members of the command died when their transport plane was shot down. Realising that she was popular among the troops and convinced as to her loyalty to the party, Safia was promoted to the rank of Captain and given control of the company.