Addis Abeba: A new report by UNICEF says since fighting resumed in late August in Northern Ethiopia, approximately 574,000 people have been additionally displaced in conflict affected Afar, Amhara, and Tigray regions.
According to the report the total number of people in need of humanitarian assistance throughout Ethiopia stands at 29.7 million out of whom 12.5 million are children.
In the most affected Tigray region, due to “continued airstrikes and shelling on multiple fronts, more than 210,000 people have been newly displaced since the resumption of fighting in late August”, the report added.
Additional 163,709 people in Afar, in conflict-affected zones bordering Tigray have been displaced as of 30 September, while more than 200,000 people in Amhara, in North Wollo and Wag Hemra zones have also been newly displaced according to the report.
The report further says “insecurity and restrictions on the movement of aid continue to constrain the humanitarian response across the three regions”.
In Tigray “there was an approximately 84 percent reduction in the number of children and pregnant and lactating women (PLW) accessing primary healthcare services from August to September” the report says.
In North Wollo, North and West Gondar, and Wag Hemra zones of the Amhara region, where 625 schools are closed due to the renewed conflict, more than 500,000 children have been left without access to education UNICEF said.
Despite constraints the organization said it has supported the provision of primary health care services to 23,062 children and women in Tigray, Afar and Amhara.
UNICEF’s latest report comes amid growing international calls for immediate cessation of hostilities and resumption of delivery of much needed humanitarian aid to avert the looming crisis.
Ethiopian Government representatives and delegates of the Tigray Region have been convened in South Africa since Tuesday, 25 October to find a way to resolve the conflict peacefully. The AU-led peace talks, which was set to end on Sunday. AS