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As the conflict progresses, people become hungry in Tigray, Ethiopia

Nairobi, Kenya (AP)-In the rebellious northern region of Tigray in Ethiopia, people march on the capital with road blockages, airport closures and the final push of the federal government to win the two-week war. I’m hungry.

“At this stage, if you have money, you have very little left,” according to an internal assessment by an Associated Press by a humanitarian group. In an assessment based on a colleague who managed to escape, people “stay in their current location, there is no place in Tigray where the situation is different, and because of what they are afraid they cannot cross to other parts of Ethiopia. right.”

They expect to be killed, the evaluation said.

For over a week, the United Nations and other aid organizations have warned of disasters. Within days of Ethiopia’s Nobel Peace Prize-winning Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed announcing that a military attack had begun in response to an attack on a military base by the Tigray Regional Army, a long line formed outside the store. ..

Trucks loaded with food, fuel and medicine are stuck outside the borders of the region. Tigray’s bank was closed for several days, blocking humanitarian cash transfers to about one million people. And even before the battle, locust outbreaks were destroying crops.

More than 27,000 Ethiopians have fled to nearby Sudan, burdening villages that are praised for their generosity, but give little.

However, many in Tigray cannot or will not leave, fearing the threat of ethnic violence. Abby’s office on Wednesday sought to mitigate these fears by saying in a statement that “law enforcement”, which it considers illegal against leaders in the Tigray region, “mainly” targets members of its ruling party.

“The people of Tigrinya will benefit first,” the statement said, as government officials vow to complete within a few days.

However, the federal government of Ethiopia has promised a quick end to the fighting from almost the beginning. And humanitarian organizations, experts, and even the US government are showing signs of despair.

“I don’t know if there are any additional UN-coordinated relocation efforts from Tigray,” the US embassy said in a brief statement on Tuesday. “U.S. citizens who cannot safely leave Tigray are advised to evacuate to their designated location.”

It is said that far more than 1,000 citizens in the United States and other countries are trapped, along with most of the approximately 6 million inhabitants of the Tigray region.

“Humanitarian aid should be given a safe passage to provide assistance to vulnerable groups,” US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in an overnight statement. “Communications services in the Tigray region should be partially restored immediately to allow independent reporting of the situation and communication with civilians, including US citizens.”

Mark Lowcock, Head of Humanitarian Aid at the United Nations, said in another statement: A safe passage for civilians seeking help. And the safety of aid workers. Even before the conflict, nearly one million people in the Tigray region needed humanitarian assistance, and millions more near the border, he said.

His office on Tuesday quoted a long list of Ethiopian threats, including public unrest, heightened anxiety, locust epidemics, and the economic collapse of the COVID-19 pandemic, with a $ 20 million “or Ethiopian” Predictive action to fight hunger ”has been secured. , This includes a decrease in income and an increase in inflation. “

There is even the possibility of famine in the Tigray area, researchers warn in a new article published by conversation. About 80% of the people in Tigray are self-sufficient farmers, and they write that the fight will affect the next harvest season.

And the worst locust outbreak in the region in decades is “destroying vast cultivated land and large herds are active in northeastern Ethiopia, where Tigray is located.”

The outbreak of locusts is so severe that even neighboring Eritrea, which is largely silent about the conflict, despite the Tigray army launching rockets in the capital, speaks relatively openly about insect invasion. I will.

The division between the federal governments of Ethiopia and Tigriña, each of which is now considered illegal, includes a move by the federal government to divert funds from local government to local government, resulting in starvation. Researchers wrote in The Conversation that they are influencing the early warning system for.

This period was already a “hungry gap” for many, they said. “I’m worried that the grain basket will be left empty because of the conflict.”

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As the conflict progresses, people become hungry in Tigray, Ethiopia

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