The BBC World Service has launched three websites for Ethiopia and neighbouring Eritrea as part of its biggest expansion since the 1940s.
The sites would be a “source of truth” in a region with limited independent media, said BBC editor Will Ross.
The Amharic, Afaan Oromo and Tigrinya sites’ launch will be followed in a few months by the launch of radio programmes in the three languages.
The UK government announced a funding boost for the World Service in 2015.
It paved the way for the expansion drive in Africa and Asia.
“We know that there is a great deal of hunger for audiences in Ethiopia and Eritrea to access a broad range of high quality content in Amharic, Afaan Oromo and Tigrinya,” said Ross, head of the new services.
Eritrea won independence from Ethiopia in 1993 after a 30-year war.
Tensions with Ethiopia remain high across a closed and heavily fortified border.
An estimated 80,000 people died during a 1998-2000 border war between the two states.
Ross said he believed that the potential audience in the two countries – which have a combined population of more than 100 million – was huge, and social media would play a key role in helping to target a younger audience.
“There is also a significant diaspora, which retains strong links with ‘home’. The political situation in both countries has triggered the development of a large vocal, activist presence in the diaspora,” he said.
“The current news choice for many in Ethiopia is either a pro-government platform at home or a vehemently anti-government offer from the diaspora.”