Tigrinya (also known as Tigrigna) is an Afro-Asiatic language (distantly related to Arabic and Hebrew) and a member of the Southern Semitic subfamily. Tigrinya is closely related to the Tigre and Ge'ez languages.
It is spoken by some 5 million speakers - with about 1.2 million speakers in Eritrea; approximately 3.2 million in the Tigray Province in Ethiopia, where it is an official language and also serves as a lingua franca among different ethnic groups. In both countries Tigrinya is used in the mass media.
There are Tigrinya speakers in the Diaspora in Israel, Germany, and in the Scandinavian countries. Language variation: In Eritrea the dialect of Tigrinya is known as Asmara; in Ethiopia the dialect is Tigray (from the Tigray Province).
CLASSIFICATION = Afro-Asiatic family, SCRIPT = Ethiopic - form of Ge'ez script