UN warned on Thursday that, the humanitarian situation in Ethiopia’s war-torn Tigray is poised to “worsen dramatically” and with lethal consequences, blaming the increasing crisis on a “aid blockage.”
Northern Ethiopia has been devastated by violence since Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed dispatched soldiers into Tigray in November to depose the regional ruling party, the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, claiming the move was in response to attacks on army facilities.
The fighting has stretched on for months, causing a humanitarian crisis in Tigray that has left 400,000 people facing famine-like circumstances, according to the United Nations.
“Stocks of relief aid, cash and fuel are running very low or are completely depleted. Food stocks already ran out on 20 August,” the UN’s acting humanitarian coordinator for Ethiopia, Grant Leaity, said in a statement.
“The region remains under a de facto humanitarian aid blockade, where access to bring life-saving humanitarian relief continues to be extremely restricted,” Leaity said, adding that no trucks had been able to enter Tigray since August 22.
“With the inability to bring in sufficient and sustained levels of humanitarian supplies, cash and fuel, the humanitarian situation in the north of Ethiopia is set to worsen dramatically, particularly in Tigray region,” he added, urging Abiy’s government to ease restrictions.
- Since the conflict erupted, the Ethiopian authorities and the Tigrayan rebels have traded blame over the issue, with each side accusing the other of obstructing aid convoys and driving a desperate population into famine.
- As the rebels have pushed into the neighbouring Afar and Amhara regions, the situation there has also worsened.
The humanitarian situation in Ethiopia’s war-torn Tigray is set to “worsen dramatically” and to deadly effect, the UN warned Thursday, blaming an “aid blockade” for the escalating crisis.