About 90% of the households in Tigray, where the Ethiopian federal government and the rebels in that region have been waging war for almost two yearslack regular access to food, reported the UN World Food Program (WFP).
”Access to food in Tigray (in the north of the country) continues to be a cause for concern with 89% of households in a situation of food insecurity, which represents an increase of six percentage points since the last evaluation carried out in November 2021″, indicated the WFP in a report sent to EFE this Friday.
Among the affected households, 47% suffer from “severe food insecurity”, that is, they find enormous difficulties in getting the food they need, preventing them from having normal growth and development and a healthy life.
”The ongoing conflict in Tigray (…) has given rise to a humanitarian crisis characterized by worryingly high levels of food insecurity, gender-based violence, widespread displacement, limited access to basic services and the destruction of the local economy”lamented the WFP.
The violence has displaced some two million peopleforcing many of them to abandon their crops or sell their livestock.
Furthermore, in this war-torn region the grain prices are between 70% and 300% more expensive than in other areas of Ethiopia due to the interruption of agricultural work and trade routes, noted the WFP. On the other hand, cooking oils are between 58% and 99% more expensive than in other regions of the country.
With this scenario, “more than 75% of households (in Tigray) indicated that they could access local markets, but 85% said that they did not go to those markets because they lacked money in cash to buy food,” according to the WFP.
This UN institution warned that, although part of the humanitarian work resumed last March, when the government announced a “humanitarian truce”, “the flow of humanitarian and commercial supplies to Tigray continues to be severely restricted and insufficient”.
”Although 6,105 truckloads of food have reached Mekelle (capital of Tigray) since last July 26, this has not yet translated into an increase in humanitarian assistance because other challenges remain, such as limited access to fuel,” he added.
The war began on November 4, 2020, when the Ethiopian Prime MinisterAbiy Ahmed, ordered an offensive against the Popular Front for the Liberation of Tigray (PFLT) -the party that governed the region- in response to an attack on a federal military base and after an escalation of political tensions.
Last March, after Addis Ababa proclaimed a “indefinite humanitarian truce”, the Tigrin rebels declared a “cessation of hostilities” subject to compliance with the announcement of the federal Executive.
Since then, both the The Ethiopian federal government and the FPLT have expressed their desire to find a peaceful solution to this conflict, but both parties accuse each other of hindering possible peace talks.
(With information from EFE)
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