Yesterday, nearly 40 trucks carrying humanitarian supplies, including food, left Semela, the capital of Afar, for Tigray-the first convoy to do so since October 18.
At the same time, trucks loaded with fuel and medical supplies are still in Semela awaiting customs clearance.
Stéphane Dujarric told reporters at a regular press conference that about 500 trucks of humanitarian supplies are needed every week.
We unite a good start to major actions to get the job done and reach all the people who need help most. pic.twitter.com/aJlKcHzMxF
-WFP_Ethiopia (@WFP_Ethiopia) November 24, 2021
7 million food insecure
In November 2020, the fierce fighting between the central government army and the army loyal to the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) made the Tigray, Amhara and Afar regions of northern Ethiopia in urgent need of humanitarian assistance.
After months of killing, looting, and destroying health centers and agricultural infrastructure, including irrigation systems that are vital to production, these demands will only soar.
Currently, about 7 million people across the country are suffering from severe food insecurity.
At the same time, after the grounding on October 22, the United Nations Humanitarian Aviation Service has resumed flights to Merkler, allowing the United Nations and humanitarian partners to rotate staff in and out of Tigray and transfer a limited amount of business cash .
However, the spokesperson said, “Due to the shortage of operational cash, local humanitarian partners continue to report major challenges.”
Despite injecting new resources of US$40 into Ethiopia-US$25 million fromCentral Emergency Response Fund And 15 million U.S. dollars from the countryEthiopian Humanitarian Fund(EHF)-The country still faces a funding gap of US$1.3 billion, including US$350 million for Tigray’s response.
Despite the challenging operating environment, humanitarian partners continue to respond to the increasingly urgent needs of northern Ethiopia (including Amhara and Afar).
In Amhara, a major food aid operation began in the towns of Kangbocha and Desi, targeting more than 450,000 people in the next two weeks.
Yesterday, the United Nations AnnounceIn view of the country’s security situation, and out of cautious considerations, it is reducing its footprint in Ethiopia by temporarily relocating all eligible family members.
“It is important to note that the staff will stay in Ethiopia to perform our tasks”, Dugaric said.
The United Nations will monitor the situation as it develops, keeping in mind the safety of its staff and the need to continue to operate and support all those in need.
Earlier this month, the organization confirmed that at least 16 UN staff and their families were detained in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, and are working with the Ethiopian government to ensure their immediate release.