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Daily Noon Briefing Highlights: Ethiopia - Niger - Yemen

04 Jan 2021

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People walk on a road in Tillaberi region in western Niger (file photo). © UNICEF/Vincent Tremeau

Daily Noon Briefing Highlights – 4 January 2021

Ethiopia

Although humanitarian access into some areas of Tigray, Ethiopia, has slightly improved recently, it remains critically challenged by insecurity and bureaucratic constraints throughout the region. Access to some cities and refugee camps has been possible, but it is hindered to the countryside and Hitsats and Shimelba refugee camps.

The two joint Government-humanitarian partners’ assessment missions have been completed in south-eastern Tigray (Alamata, Mehoni, Mekelle, Enderta) and in western Tigray (Dansha and Humera).

Initial assessment findings indicate a dire humanitarian situation throughout the region, with poor access to services and limited livelihoods as well as urgent needs for shelter, food, non-food items, water, sanitation and hygiene, and provision of health and protection services.

Health facilities in major cities are partially working with limited to no stock of supplies and absence of health workers, while facilities outside major cities are not operational.

It is estimated that more than 222,000 people have been internally displaced due to the recent conflict in Tigray region. This is in addition to 100,000 people displaced prior to the conflict.

Many of the newly displaced are hosted by local communities, which have also been affected by loss of livelihoods, damaged or looted houses, lack of water and “collapsed” markets.

In the meantime, the UN continues to engage with the Government of Ethiopia and all relevant interlocutors for the safe passage of humanitarian personnel and supplies to all parts of Tigray region.

 

Niger

As of yesterday, an estimated 1,000 people have been displaced due to the attacks on Tchamo Bangou and Zaroumadareye villages in Niger. Many of them have sought refuge in nearby towns.

People fearing further attacks are also reportedly fleeing areas around the two villages.

A joint inter-agency assessment mission with the Government is scheduled for tomorrow. In the meanwhile, the UN, along with its humanitarian partners, is mobilizing relief items to provide emergency assistance as soon as possible to people affected by these attacks, including people still in the villages, displaced people and host communities.

The UN calls on armed groups to comply with international humanitarian law and immediately stop all attacks against civilians and civilian infrastructure, and ensure adequate conditions for the humanitarian response operations.

 

Yemen

According to initial reports three civilians were killed and at least four others were injured when artillery shells fell in the vicinity of a wedding hall in Al Hawak District in Al Hudaydah City on 1 January.

Acting Humanitarian Coordinator for Yemen, Mr. Ally-Raza Qureshi, called on the parties to the conflict to stop these indiscriminate attacks, which are causing so many casualties among civilians in clear violation of international humanitarian law.

Yemen remains the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. Nearly 80 per cent of the population – more than 24 million people – require some form of humanitarian assistance and protection. By the end of December 2020, only 50 per cent of US$3.38 billion needed for the humanitarian response had been received.