WFP accelerates humanitarian operations in Northern Ethiopia
ADDIS ABABA – The United Nations World Food Programme (WFP) has delivered over 2,400 metric tons of food, medical, nutrition and other lifesaving supplies to Ethiopia’s Tigray region following the signing of a peace agreement earlier this month and the reopening of all four road corridors. However, deliveries of assistance within Tigray are not matching the needs and WFP and its cooperating partners urgently need access to all parts of the region to deliver food and nutrition assistance to 2.3 million vulnerable people.
Here is an update on the situation across conflict and drought-affected areas of Ethiopia:
- 96 trucks have transported over 2,400 metric tons of food – enough to feed around 170,000 people - and 100,000 litres of fuel into Tigray since November 15 when WFP resumed operations using all four reopened road corridors.
- The WFP-led Logistics Cluster has facilitated the transportation of 250 metric tons of humanitarian cargo into Tigray from Gondar, Kombolcha and Semera for eight cooperating partners, including medical items via air.
- For the first time ever, the United Nations Humanitarian Air Service (UNHAS) is conducting flight rotations to transport passengers and humanitarian cargo into Shire airport in Tigray. WFP has just sent in the first UNHAS passenger flight to Mekelle since the end of August, after receiving federal clearances for passenger flights to resume to Mekelle.Regular UNHAS flights to Mekelle must continue.
- Despite newly gained humanitarian access via Amhara into districts in the northwestern and southern zones of Tigray, access into some parts of eastern and central zones of Tigray remain constrained - affecting up to 170,000 mothers and children in need of food assistance.
- WFP has already delivered food to over 100,000 people in Mai Tsebri in the northwestern zone and Alamata in the southern zone since roads into Tigray reopened. WFP also reached 540,000 people in Mekelle in early November. Since the start of November, WFP has reached 29 percent of its caseload of 2.1 million people with food assistance in the Tigray region.
- WFP also continues to deliver food assistance in neighbouring Afar and Amhara regions. In Afar, WFP has delivered food assistance to 650,000 people three times this year. A fourth round is currently underway and 180,000 people (27 percent of people targeted) have been reached so far. In Amhara, WFP is currently delivering food assistance to 675,000 people for a fourth time this year and 611,000 people (90 percent of people targeted) have been reached so far.
- In Northern Ethiopia, two years of conflict has left more than 13.6 million people in need of humanitarian food assistance. WFP’s latest Emergency Food Security assessment of the situation in Tigray, published in August, found 5.4 million people - 90 percent of the region – in need of food assistance. Families in Amhara and Afar are also affected where 7 million and 1.2 million people respectively require food assistance.
- Across Ethiopia as a whole, 22 million people need food assistance which includes 9.8 million people in the drought-affected southern and southeastern parts of the country, where four consecutive failed rainy seasons have caused crop failures, millions of livestock deaths and left 2.2 million children acutely malnourished. WFP is reaching 2.8 million drought-affected people in the Somali region every six weeks with emergency food, cash and nutrition assistance and is also supporting over 85,000 agro-pastoralists to build their resilience against future climate shocks.
- Additional funding must be made available to support both the immediate and long-term needs of people affected by conflict and climate shocks. WFP is aiming to reach over 11 million people in Ethiopia with humanitarian assistance over the next six months but is facing a funding shortfall of US$422 million.
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The United Nations World Food Programme is the world’s largest humanitarian organization, saving lives in emergencies and using food assistance to build a pathway to peace, stability and prosperity for people recovering from conflict, disasters and the impact of climate change.
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