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News: UN releases $65M for humanitarian response as Tigray crisis worsens; 16 M people in need of humanitarian assistance across Ethiopia

Picture: MSF

Addis Abeba, May 06/2021 – The United Nations has released US$65 million for the humanitarian response in Ethiopia. More than 16 million people need humanitarian assistance throughout Ethiopia, including an estimated 4.5 million in the Tigray region.

UN humanitarian chief Mark Lowcock said: “Ethiopian lives and
livelihoods are being destroyed by drought, and children are suffering
from malnutrition. And six months into the conflict in Tigray, civilians
continue to bear the brunt. Women and girls are being targeted with
horrific sexual violence, and millions are struggling to access
essential services and food, especially in some rural areas that are
completely cut off. We need to scale up the humanitarian response now.”

Access to all those in need in Tigray remains a challenge, but aid
workers are working with authorities to overcome obstacles to get help
to those who need it and reaching previously inaccessible areas in the
South-Eastern zone. Last week an inter-agency humanitarian convoy
managed to reach Samre town, where it delivered emergency food aid and
nutrition supplies and organized a mobile health clinic in the Samre
hospital. These recent reports show the promise of improved access and
underscore the urgency of additional funding to help people who were
previously unreachable.

A total of $40 million will be dedicated to the aid operation in
Tigray, where it will fund emergency shelter, clean water, health care,
work to prevent and respond to cases of sexual and gender-based
violence, and emergency telecommunications to support the humanitarian
response. The funding comes as the security situation in Tigray remains
volatile, aid workers are unable to reach all those in need, and
COVID-19 cases have been reported among displaced people in Mekelle.

The remaining $25 million will fund humanitarian operations in the
rest of Ethiopia, including in response to drought in the Somali and
Oromia regions. It will support the treatment of children with severe
acute malnutrition and the rehabilitation of water systems, supply water
to drought-affected communities, and enable humanitarian organizations
to pre-position life-saving supplies.

The current humanitarian response throughout Ethiopia, including in
Tigray, remains insufficient to meet the needs of all affected people.
Additional funding is needed, alongside safe and unfettered humanitarian
access, to ensure aid organizations and the Ethiopian Government can
scale up to the level needed.

The $65 million released today is made up of $45 million from the UN-managed Ethiopia Humanitarian Fund, $25 million of which is earmarked for Tigray, and $20 million from the UN Central Emergency Response Fund (CERF), $15 million of which will be dedicated to Tigray.

Previously, CERF has provided $33 million in response to the Tigray situation and for anticipatory humanitarian action for drought in Ethiopia.

Previously, the UN’s Ethiopia Humanitarian Fund has provided $12.5
million for the humanitarian response in Ethiopia, including in the
Tigray region.

In Sudan, CERF and the Sudan Humanitarian Fund have previously provided $10.6 million for refugees from Tigray.

These allocations would not have been possible without generous and consistent donor support.

CERF is one of the fastest and most effective ways to help people affected by crises. Since its creation, it has assisted hundreds of millions of people with over $7 billion across more than 100 countries and territories. UN

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