Airstrikes reported in multiple locations of Afar region – OCHA

The security situation in northern Ethiopia remains fragile and unpredictable, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA),

Although the overall situation in Ethiopia’s Tigray and Amhara regions continue to be relatively calm as lines of contacts remained static, armed clashes, with reported use of heavy weapons and airstrikes, continued to be reported in multiple locations in Afar Region mainly in Berhale, Erebti, Koneba, and Abala districts, all in Kilbeti zone also known as Zone 2.

Insecurity in Afar and earlier administrative measures, with no relief convoys reaching Tigray since mid-December, continue to affect civilian lives, their safety, restrict access to livelihoods, OCHA said in a statement.

“The situation further increases humanitarian needs notably with the growing number of displaced people and hinders humanitarian access and delivery of aid to affected areas in northern Ethiopia,” the statement said.

According to the Afar regional government authorities, the ongoing conflict has so far displaced hundreds of thousands of people, mostly pastoralists, in Zone 2 alone, and displacement is still ongoing. Consequently, the humanitarian situation in the region continues to be dire and is further deteriorating.

An estimated 200,000 people, including internally displaced people (IDPs) in Afar, are in hard-to-reach locations either due to road conditions, security concerns, or trapped behind the lines of contact or took refuge in remote areas with no access to humanitarian assistance and services.