More than 43,000 flee Ethiopia in just under a month

An emergency on top of an emergency; a crisis is unravelling in northern Ethiopia, where clashes between the Ethiopian army and forces from the Tigray region are driving thousands of people to flee – more than half of them children.

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©UNHCR/Olivier Jobard

Since the fighting began in early-November 2020, more than 43,000 women, children and men have fled into Sudan in search of safety.

While the UN Refugee Agency and its partners have been able to deliver food and other forms of life-saving aid to those fleeing, the humanitarian response is overstretched. At present, there is not enough shelter to meet the growing numbers in the region.

Hot meals are still being provided and more water points and latrines are being constructed. Food is being provided to some 300 malnourished children and pregnant and lactating mothers; UNHCR has been able to identify particularly vulnerable people and refer them to relevant services.

UNHCR is continuing to move refugees away from the border and further into safety.  As of Monday, just over 8,000 had been relocated to Um Rakuba, which is 70 kilometres further inside Sudann.

Inside Ethiopia, UNHCR remains concerned about civilians, including displaced populations and aid workers in Tigray. UNHCR calls for free, safe and unhindered humanitarian access so that life-saving aid can reach people that rely on it.

Amid the ongoing conflict in Ethiopia, our concern for the 100,000 Eritrean refugees is growing. Without humanitarian access, there is great concern about the delivery of the most basic services including water, essential medicines and food supplies, which will run out in one week for the refugee population.

To learn more about the Ethiopia Tigray emergency, please visit our website.

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