Omo Valley Essay

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THE OMO VALLEY, ETHIOPIA The Omo Valley, or Omo River, is located in southern Ethiopia. Ethiopia is one of many countries in Africa, located in the east. Ethiopia is bordered by Eritrea, Djibouti, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan and Kenya. Over 92,000,000 people live in Ethiopia, which makes it the second most populated country in Africa. It covers a land area of 1,100,000 km². Ethiopia is mostly known for its tribes and fossils that have been found, some of which are the oldest evidence for the Homo sapiens species. One of the most important rivers in Ethiopia is the Omo River, which is 760 km long and flows only through Ethiopia, past the Mago and Omo National Parks, and empties into Lake Turkana, on the border with Kenya. It floods quite often, and a flood in 2006 killed 456 people and stranded over 20,000. Despite some of the negative outcomes, the river is vital to the people who live along the banks of the river, as it brings fertile silt. The river was first found/reached by an Italian explorer called Vittorio Bottego in 1896 on his African expedition, on which he died a year later. The river was renamed Omo-Bottego in his memory. Many animals including hippos and crocodiles live in and around the river. The actual Lower Valley of the Omo is in the south west area of Ethiopia, and spreads over 165km². Many research sites are dotted around the area, where fossils and remains of humans are constantly being dug up. Also, the tribes which inhabit the area are constantly being studied for their diversity. Sadly, the area, which had been shut off from outsiders for many years, is now being influenced by tourists and travellers, who don't always respect the people living there or the area. A dam project was started in 2012, and many say that it ruins the cultural and historical aspect of Ethiopia as people visit Ethiopia to see the natural and undeveloped

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