What does Eritrean independence mean for gender equality? Can wartime advances for women be sustained into the new era? Eritrea has emerged from a 30-year war, faced with the huge task of reconstruction and development. This report argues that women?s widespread involvement in the military and political struggle led to positive advances in gender equality during war. The potential for strong participation of women in independent Eritrea is high. However, a resurgence of more traditional and conservative attitudes and a preoccupation with reconstruction rather than social change during this post-independence period may endanger gender equality gains. An essential challenge for post-war development is how to maintain and build upon the advances already made in gender relations during wartime.