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Daily Noon Briefing Highlights: Ethiopia - Yemen

13 Oct 2021

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A health worker evaluates a child during a screening for malnutrition in pregnant and lactating women and children by UNICEF and partners in Gijet in the Tigray region of Ethiopia on 20 July 2021. © UNICEF/UN0494083/Nesbitt

Daily Noon Briefing Highlights – 13 October 2021

Ethiopia

The overall situation in the northern parts of Ethiopia continues to be highly unpredictable and volatile.  

The delivery of humanitarian supplies into Tigray remains heavily constrained via the only road access route in Afar – the Semera-Abala-Mekelle corridor. 

Between 6 and 12 October, 211 trucks of humanitarian supplies arrived, compared with 80 trucks a week earlier. While the increased number of trucks is a positive development, this is still insufficient compared to the needs. Some 897 trucks have entered Tigray since 12 July, or only about 14 per cent of the trucks needed. One hundred trucks are needed daily. 

Fuel has not entered Tigray since the end of July. Ten fuel tankers are currently in Semera (Afar). They have received approval by the Government to proceed, and we hope they will be able to move to Tigray with the next convoy. Medicines have still not been allowed to enter Tigray. 

Several UN and NGO partners have significantly reduced or shut down programmes due to depletion or severe shortages of fuel, cash and supplies. 

Partners, however, have continued to respond to some of the most urgent needs in Tigray with the available limited resources. More than 146,000 people were assisted with food last week, but at least 870,000 people on average per week need to be assisted to serve 5.2 million people within a six-week food cycle. Approximately 143,000 people were reached with emergency water trucking, down from about 193,000 people a week earlier. 

In neighbouring Afar and Amhara regions, humanitarian partners are scaling up the response. They have reached about 639,000 people with food assistance in accessible areas in Amhara since early August, and about 72,000 internally displaced people in Afar. 

The UN urgently calls on all parties to allow unimpeded and sustained access to people in Tigray, Amhara and Afar.

Yemen

Fierce fighting continues in Yemen, including in Marib, Shabwah and Al Bayda governorates, where clashes have escalated over recent weeks. 

This escalation is having an increasingly devastating impact on civilians. Nearly 10,000 people were displaced in Marib in September – the highest rate recorded in the governorate in a single month so far this year.

The UN is particularly concerned about the situation in Al Abdiyah District in the south-west of Marib. The district – home to an estimated 35,000 people, including many who had found refuge there after fleeing the conflict in neighbouring areas – has been encircled by Houthi forces since late September.

The UN urges all parties to the conflict to uphold their obligations under international humanitarian law, including ensuring the protection of civilians and providing safe passage for those fleeing conflict areas. The UN also calls on the parties to facilitate safe, timely and sustained humanitarian access to all affected areas of Yemen, including in Marib, Shabwah and Al Bayda.