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High hopes and big challenges for Ethiopia’s new leader

A man reads a newspaper showing the news that Ahmed will become prime minister. Photo: ZACHARIAS ABUBEKER/AFP/Getty Images

Ethiopia’s governing coalition has named Abiy Ahmed its new leader and the country's next prime minister, after years of protest and political unrest led to the sudden resignation last month of Hailemariam Desalegn. Ahmed, 42, is the first Ethiopian leader from the Oromo ethnic group, Ethiopia's largest, and has been praised for his "impressive academic and military credentials," per the BBC.

Why it Matters: Ethiopia's economy is East Africa’s largest and one of the world's fastest-growing, and the country is a U.S. counterterrorism ally. But its progress has been put at risk by deadly ethnic clashes and revolts over mass arrests and alleged human rights violations.