UN condemns Ethiopian airstrike; dozens killed this month | Abiy Ahmed News

At least 108 civilians have been killed in Tigray since the start of the new year, the United Nations said, as it warned aid distributions were at an all-time low.

The UN human rights office has expressed alarm over “multiple and deeply disturbing reports” of airstrikes in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, saying at least 108 civilians have been killed since early January.

Liz Throssell, spokesman for the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), described multiple attacks, including on private minibuses, airports and camps for displaced persons. At least 59 people were killed in the concentration camp strike, the deadliest yet.

“We are appalled by continuing to receive multiple deeply disturbing reports of airstrikes against Ethiopia Tigre region,” Throssell told reporters in Geneva.

“At least 108 civilians were reportedly killed and 75 others injured as a result of airstrikes allegedly carried out by the Ethiopian Air Force since the beginning of the year.”

“Dialogue and Reconciliation”

UN Secretary-General António Guterres said late Friday that he was “heartbroken by the suffering of the Ethiopian people”, repeating his call for all parties to stop fighting.

“Everyone in need of humanitarian aid must receive it as soon as possible. Now is the time to start dialogue and reconciliation,” he tweeted.

Throssell called on Ethiopian authorities and their allies to ensure that civilians are protected in accordance with international law, which requires verification that targets are military.

“We call on the Ethiopian authorities and their allies to ensure the protection of civilians and civilian objects in accordance with their obligations under international law,” she said.

“Failure to respect the principles of distinction and proportionality may constitute a war crime.”

Ethiopian military spokesman Colonel Getnet Adane and government spokesman Legesse Tulu did not immediately respond to requests for comment on the alleged strike.

The government has previously denied targeting civilians in a 14-month conflict with rebel Tigrean forces. The Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF), which is fighting the central government, is believed to have no air power to strike.

Meanwhile, the UN’s World Food Programme (WFP) said at the same briefing that its distributions were at an all-time low and the escalation of the conflict meant that the WFP convoy had not reached Tigreia’s capital, Merdeka, since mid-December. Kerr.

“Life-saving food aid operations in northern Ethiopia are coming to a halt as heavy fighting in nearby areas hinders the passage of fuel and food,” WFP spokesman Tomson Phiri told reporters.

“After 14 months of conflict in northern Ethiopia, more people are needed than ever before emergency food aid.With no food, no fuel, no access, we are on the brink of a major humanitarian catastrophe. “