Famine is a high concern for the Tigray region of northern Ethiopia. As a result of the conflict, some five million people are estimated to be in need of food aid and perhaps 900 000 are already starving. Violence, looting and insecurity hinders access to health and education. Some 70 hospitals have been occupied, vehicles have been stopped and aid agencies generally face difficulties in reaching displaced and other people in need. The recent ceasefire may offer opportunities for aid agencies to deliver much needed aid.
Yet, the conflict in Tigray has also been extremely dangerous for aid workers. To date, the conflict has killed at least 12 aid workers, and the brutal murder of three MSF workers has increased challenges for aid agencies of how to ensure safe access for their staff. Successful humanitarian interventions require a nuanced and objective understanding of the contextual ecosystems to ensure that complex security contexts do not create unsurmountable access concerns that leave people in need without much needed aid.
Our Situation Report series provides regular updates of the changing context.