Eritrean refugees trapped in Tigray amid armed clashes

Tents in a refugee camp Tents in a refugee camp Credit to Ahmed Akacha on

27 July 2021

Thousands of Eritrean refugees caught up in Tigray, as the conflict in Ethiopia does not come to an end

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) spokesperson Babar Baloch expressed all his concerns about the harrowing situation of the several thousands of Eritrean refugees who have been caught up in Ethiopia's Tigray region amid the ongoing armed clashes taking place in the country. Indeed, as reported by the UN Refugee Agency, approximately 24,000 refugees are currently trapped in Tigray’s Mai Aini and Adi Harush camps, enduring on a daily basis physical and psychological violence.

According to the UNHCR’s sources, one refugee was murdered by a soldier inside the Mai Aini camp. Such an appalling event was not an isolated case, as another refugee had been killed on 14 July. In addition to these extreme episodes of violence, the UN Refugee Agency further underscores that all the refugees living in Tigray’s camps have been deprived of the basic humanitarian assistance, since all the aid workers have not been allowed to access the aforementioned areas. As a result, people’s living conditions are visibly worsening, as food and safe water are running out and healthcare services are almost completely unavailable. Babar Baloch’s concerns are exacerbated by the fact that the main humanitarian supply road –linking Semera in Afar and Mekelle in Tigray- has been blocked since 18 July.

After having portrayed the dismaying situation in which thousands of Eritrean refugees are forced to live, the UNHCR spokesperson recommended all the parties involved in the conflict to make sure that humanitarian workers can access the camps and deliver the necessary aid to these needy people.




Author: Gianpaolo Mascaro; Editor: Jasmina Saric

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