BY AANU ADEOYE | CNN
Eritrea’s Minister of Information Yemane Meskel has paid tribute to rapper Nipsey Hussle who was shot dead in Los Angeles on Sunday.
The rapper’s father is from the African nation and Hussle visited Eritrea in April 2018 where he sat down with the Ministry of Information’s website for a wide-ranging interview about his life and experiences growing up in Los Angeles in a culture of gang violence.
The rapper, birth name Ermias Davidson Asghedom, was shot dead in an attack near a clothing store he was associated with.
Two others were injured in the shooting that left the 33-year-old dead.
“Extremely saddened to hear the news of the tragic and untimely death of iconic recording artist/entrepreneur Ermias Asgedom (Nipsey Hussle),” Meskel tweeted.
“RIP & condolences to his family.”
Extremely saddened to hear the news of the tragic and untimely death of iconic recording artist/entrepreneur Ermias Asgedom (Nipsey Hussle). RIP & condolences to his family. (Nipsey visited his home country in April last year; Profile interview attached) https://t.co/AM87gfgRPu pic.twitter.com/EPaHJGCzm8
— Yemane G. Meskel (@hawelti) April 1, 2019
During his interview, Hussle spoke of his love for Eritrea and his desire to connect with his extended family after fourteen years since he previously visited the country.
“I am here to visit my family and reconnect with my grandmother, my cousins and everybody else,” Hussle said at the time.
“I love to be here. The people, the food, the culture, and the lifestyle are extremely good.”
The news of his tragic death has been greeted by messages of condolences from celebrities worldwide, with stars like Rihanna, Drake and LeBron James and many others all paying their tributes to the rapper.
Billion Temesghen, the Eritrean journalist who interviewed him last year, wrote on Twitter: “Eritreans worldwide feel sorrow for the loss of a talented star, a loving family man & a compassionate compatriot. Condolences to us all.”
Ermias Asghedom AKA Nipsey Husle was an Eritrean rap star, a preformance phenomenon, who had just returned home. In my pleasant talk with him I was delighted to learn of the Eritrean & African pride he carried deep inside him. He is a legend. compassionate compatriot. We miss him pic.twitter.com/ogWbp0HrhA
— Billion Temesghen (@billietemesghen) April 1, 2019
Hussle’s debut studio album, Victory Lap, was nominated for best rap album at this year’s Grammy Awards.
Two Eritrean Legends Gone Too Soon 😥💔
— We Are Eritreans™ (@WeAreEritreans) April 1, 2019
R.I.P KING NIPSEY…. There is so much I want to say but my heart is to Hurt right now to speak on it. All I know is we think a lot a like probably because we from the same place South… https://t.co/nQoWUxZ2Aa
— Tiffany Haddish (@TiffanyHaddish) April 1, 2019