Food Shortage, Lack of Access to Medical Services Still Hitting Tigray

Months after Ethiopia’s final offensive, the offensives have hardly ended as the war-hit people of Tigray continue to struggle to recover from the ruins of the conflict.

The conflict between Ethiopian and Tigrayan forces, although relatively short, has created long-lasting and excruciating consequences.

Many Tigrayans still flee from the North of the country, with a refugee camp set in Sudan, where a storm is also brewing. Tigrayans still die of starvation and many have been rendered homeless by the war.

The Ethiopia-Tigray clash began in November after the national forces waged a battle back in the region citing insurrection from the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF).

Thousands of people were killed while many others were left homeless in Tigray, despite pleas by the international community.

With a shortage of food and water in the region, Tigrayans have been solely dependent on agencies in the past few months.

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According to the United Nations, more than 2.3m people are still in the need of relief packages in Tigray.

“Every time we reach a new area, we find food, water, health services depleted, and a lot of fear among the population. Everybody is asking for food,” the MSF has said.

People in local communities, including children are also dying of malnutrition as the scars of the conflict hang around.

“The only assistance refugees received since the start of the conflict was a one-time food distribution conducted by the World Food Programme (WFP) almost a month ago. Plans are underway for a second distribution, ” UNHCR has said.

“Thankfully, teams found that in both Mai Aini and Adi Harush camps, buildings and structures remain intact, including refugee homes, schools and clinics, with little damage observed.

“However, refugees told our staff that while they were not impacted directly from the fighting, they were threatened and harassed by various armed groups. The refugees told us they continue to have safety concerns, reporting that armed gangs roam the camps at night stealing and looting.

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“UNHCR is working with the government and partners to re-establish a regular presence at the camps and launch a response based on the information collected. We have called on the government to strengthen security in both camps.”

Tigrayans have left the cities for the local villages as they continue to search for food and safety.

Ethiopia has been on the hunt for the leaders of the TPLF with a heavy crackdown operation helping the military to arrest some members of the group.

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The main leader of the TPLF, Debretsion Gebremichael is still at large and the government has placed a bounty on his head.

Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed has been criticised in Tigray and some parts of Ethiopia for his lack of response to the situation in the North of the country in Tigray.

A call for robust national and international response has been made to Ethiopia amid the troubles as Tigrayans struggle to come to grips with the aftermath of a preventable conflict.

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