Arrivals waiting for services at Metema (Photo:OCHA Ethiopia/Woretaw Chekol)
Addis Abeba – The UN said that as 05 May more than 12,000 people have arrived in Ethiopia from Sudan via the border town of Metema in West Gondar Zone of Amhara Region since 21 April.
According to a report by OCHA, more than 1,000 daily arrivals have been recorded over the past three weeks, with 1,113 people arriving at the border town on 04 May.
Ethiopians account for more than 50 per cent of the arrival on Thursday while other nationalities included Sudanese, Eritreans, Somalians, Americans, Syrians, Ghanaians and others in descending numerical order, the report added.
“Most foreign nationals, after securing relevant visas, have left the border area and gone to either their respective countries/destinations or to settle in Ethiopia. Similarly, Ethiopian returnees are also moving to their places of origin within the country,” the report noted, adding that, “the majority of those who remain at the border, however, require emergency humanitarian assistance”.
Hot food, drinking water and latrines, emergency shelter, adequate health and protection services are among the primary needs according to the report.
“Currently, essential and life-saving drugs and medicines in health facilities are lacking. There are also limitations in referral services to hospitals, and mental health and psychosocial support (MHPSS) at border entry points,” the report said.
OCHA said scaling up the health emergency interventions against identified needs is essential to avoid worsening of the situation and prevent communicable and non-communicable diseases.
On 29 April Addis Standard reported that Ethiopian refugees who fled the brutal war in Tigray in early November 2020 and are sheltered in two refugee camps in Tunaydbah and Um Rakuba in Eastern Sudan, are “in danger” following the outbreak of militarized violence in Sudan on 15 April and aid workers’ evacuations.
Two days earlier, the Ethiopian embassy in Khartoum said that it relocated its staff including the ambassador to its consulate office in Gadaref region and has been assisting Ethiopian nationals trapped in Sudan from there. AS