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Daily Noon Briefing Highlights: Ethiopia - Philippines

16 Nov 2020

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Ethiopian refugees fleeing clashes in the country's northern Tigray region cross the border into Hamdayet, Sudan. Credit: UNHCR/Ariane Maxiandeau

Daily Noon Briefing Highlights – 16 November 2020

Ethiopia

The UN is alarmed by the escalating conflict in the north, with reports of rocket attacks on Asmara (Eritrea), Bahir Dar and Gondar cities (in Amhara region) as well as a reported air strike in the vicinity of Mekelle – Tigray region’s main city – from where the rockets were presumably launched last night.

The UN repeats its call to all parties to the conflict to de-escalate to avoid further casualties and the suffering of civilians.

According to unconfirmed reports, there is massive internal displacement from western to northern Tigray. Already, the number of Ethiopian asylum seekers who have crossed into Sudan has reached 25,300.

The UN is equally alarmed by the increasing insecurity in western and southern Oromia, as well as in eastern Benishangul Gumuz region, which is hampering humanitarian operations.

An attack on a bus in Benishangul Gumuz’s Debate district on Saturday evening, 14 November, left at least 34 civilians dead, according to the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission.

The protection of civilians and the adherence to international humanitarian law must be enforced as a priority by all parties.

In addition, the UN calls for humanitarian access and the resumption of telecommunication and basic supplies, including food, medicine and fuel for civilians inside the Tigray region.

 

The Philippines

OCHA reports that 67 people have lost their lives, 21 people are reported injured and 13 are missing following Typhoon Vamco.

Rescue operations are ongoing as floodwaters recede, with at least 50 villages remaining isolated.

At least 1.1 million people were affected by flooding in Isabella and Cagayan provinces alone following the storm. This is the worst flooding in the regions in four decades. Tens of thousands of homes in low-lying suburbs of Manila were submerged by roof-level floods.

Typhoon Vamco hit the main island of Luzon on 11-12 November, causing extensive damage, torrential rainfall and widespread flooding. The storm struck weeks after typhoons Molave and Gony, both of which made landfall in October.

The Resident Coordinator/Humanitarian Coordinator has expressed his condolences to the Government and conveyed the readiness of the humanitarian community to support, while recognizing that national institutions have been fully mobilized to respond to the flooding.