Ethiopia: first international aid convoy in the capital of Tigray

Addis Ababa (AFP) - An international aid convoy arrived in Mekele, capital of Tigray on Saturday, a first since the launch of an Ethiopian army operation more than a month ago, when the The UN is concerned about the fate of Eritrean refugees in this region.

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, Nobel Peace Prize 2019, launched this operation on November 4 to oust the leaders of the region, from the Tigray People's Liberation Front (TPLF), after months of tension, and a announced on the 28th the capture of Mekele and the end of the fighting.

The international community demands access to Tigray, cut off from the world since the start of the operation, to deliver aid.Even before the start of the conflict, 600,000 inhabitants, including 96,000 Eritrean refugees, were totally dependent on aid food.

A convoy of seven Red Cross trucks arrived in Mekele on Saturday, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said.

"This is the first time since clashes broke out in Tigray more than a month ago that international aid has reached Mekele", noted the ICRC, adding that the convoy, which was joined by the Ethiopian Red Cross, had been organized in coordination with the Ethiopian authorities.

The convoy was carrying medicines and medical supplies to treat more than 400 wounded as well as items for the treatment of common and chronic illnesses, which are intended for Ayder Hospital, Mekele's main hospital, the Regional Health Office and at the Ethiopian Red Cross pharmacy in town.

"After weeks without resupply, running water and electricity, doctors and nurses have been forced to make impossible choices between which services to maintain and which to cut," said Patrick Youssef, ICRC regional director for 'Africa.

Posted Date: 2020-12-20

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