Tigray is under what the United Nations calls a de facto blockade that is preventing life-saving medicine and food from reaching millions.
A blockade preventing medicines and other life-saving supplies reaching Ethiopia’s Tigray has created “hell” in the war-ravaged region, and is “an insult to our humanity”, said the World Health Organization’s chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.
“Nowhere in the world are we witnessing hell like in Tigray,” said on Wednesday Ghebreyesus – himself from the northern Ethiopian region.
It is “so dreadful and unimaginable during this time, the 21st century, when a government is denying its own people for more than a year food and medicine and the rest to survive,” he told reporters.
The fighting between forces loyal to Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) and their allies has killed thousands of people and forced several million from their homes since it erupted in November 2020.
Tigray is under what the United Nations calls a de facto blockade that is preventing life-saving medicine and food from reaching millions, including hundreds of thousands in famine-like conditions.
Tedros said the situation was “desperate”.
“I’m from that region,” he said, adding though that “I am saying this without bias. The situation is serious … Imagine a complete blockade of seven million people for more than a year. And there is no food. There is no medication, no medicine. No electricity. No telecom. No media,” he said.
He also highlighted that there were now nearly daily deadly drone raids on the war-stricken region.