UN Secretary-General: A disaster “unfolding before our eyes” in Ethiopia’s Tigray region |


A humanitarian catastrophe unfolds before our eyes“The unity of Ethiopia and the stability of the region are at stake,” warned Antonio Guterres. He added, calling for an immediate ceasefire and the start of a national political dialogue.

Noting the gravity of the situation, the UN Secretary-General said that the military front lines in Tigray had reached the neighboring regions of Amhara and Afar.

The government’s announcement on 28 June of a unilateral ceasefire, and the withdrawal of the National Defense Forces from Mikkeli, did not lead to a comprehensive ceasefire.

Tigray is still under de facto The Secretary-General of the United Nations told the ambassadors that the humanitarian blockade and cut off electricity and communications.

say the situation

Mr. Guterres said that the actors in Ethiopia entered the fray through mass mobilization and activation of regional and armed groups.

The inflammatory rhetoric and ethnic profiling are tearing the country’s social fabric‘, he confirmed.

Moreover, the Secretary-General said that the human cost of war is “rising by the day”, as more than two million people have been displaced and millions more are in dire need of food, water, shelter and health care.

At least 400,000 people live in famine-like conditions, with the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) (UNICEF) warning that 100,000 face severe acute malnutrition during the year.

Amid reports of sexual and gender-based violence, refugee camps have been destroyed and hospitals looted.

I condemn these terrible acts in the strongest possible terms“There must be accountability,” the Secretary-General stressed.

Limited access to Tigray and empty warehouses

As the organization and its partners mobilized their efforts to reach five million people with food, Mr. Guterres said the response was “severely” constrained by insecurity, delays and a host of arbitrary restrictions on the work of humanitarian agencies.

Overland access to Tigray is now based on a single route, via the Afar, which involves passing through several checkpoints.

Meanwhile, although agencies are requesting nearly 100 trucks of assistance to reach Mikkeli each day, no trucks have arrived in more than a week.

“The warehouses are now empty,” the Secretary-General of the United Nations lamented.

Beyond Tigray

Beyond TigrayAnd He said the conflict in Afar and Amhara has displaced another 300,000 people, events that unfolded alongside efforts to maintain broader support across Ethiopia in response to communal violence, floods and locust outbreaks.

Mr. Guterres said Fighting drained $1 billion from Ethiopia’s coffers, signaling debt soaring.

Access to credit is drying up, inflation is rising and the country is experiencing the fifth highest rate COVID-19 cases on the continent.

A child is screened for malnutrition at a health center in Tigray, Ethiopia.

© UNICEF / Mulugeta Ayene

A child is screened for malnutrition at a health center in Tigray, Ethiopia.

Stop the fighting and start a national dialogue

Against this background, the Secretary-General reiterated his call to the parties to immediately end hostilities, without preconditions, and to negotiate a permanent ceasefire.

He stressed that foreign forces must leave the country, ensure full humanitarian access to all areas in need, restore public services and create conditions for an inclusive national political dialogue to address the causes of conflict and ensure that Ethiopian voices are directed towards peace.

Mr. Guterres indicated that he had been in close contact with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and similarly received a letter from the President of the Tigray region. The United Nations stands ready to work with the African Union and other partners to support dialogue.

“In the coming period, attention and loneliness of Security Council It will be critical,” he testifies.

Ethiopian youth victims of ‘needless conflict’

The Secretary-General of the United Nations expressed his deep regret over the tragic events unfolding.

“It is heartbreaking to see so many young Ethiopians being exploited and mobilized in the war effort” with their energies directed down a path of division and destruction, rather than building a better future for all Ethiopians, he said, calling them “the ultimate victims in this needless conflict.” “.

In every sense, Ethiopia’s future is at stakesaid the Secretary-General. Let us pledge to do everything in our power to advance the path of national cohesion and peace

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