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Over 50,000 flee amid renewed conflict in northern Ethiopia, says U

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia- More than 50,000 people have been forced to flee their homes in Ethiopia’s north amid renewed conflict in the northern region bordering the Amhara and Tigray regions, tripling from its initial 15,000 just days before, the UN said.

This surge in internally displaced persons comes after tens of thousands of residents were displaced following clashes that erupted last Saturday, with many heading south to Kobo, a nearby town, for safety.

A statement by the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs underscored the severity of the situation, particularly for vulnerable women and children who urgently require broad humanitarian support to survive.

Despite efforts by the government and humanitarian partners to provide assistance, primarily focusing on food and health services, resources are stretched thin, unable to keep pace with the escalating crisis, according to the statement.

The conflict intensified as the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) launched a renewed military venture after the Pretoria agreement was signed to end a two-year war between the Federal government and the TPLF, seizing control of areas adjacent to Alamata, which it claims as part of Tigray based on “constitutional grounds.”

The clashes, resulting in at least three casualties, highlight the escalating tensions in the region, with TPLF forces engaging with local militias.

Local authorities in the Kobo area, the nearby town for Alamata, said that despite the aid from the federal government to regional authorities like that of Tigray, no government authorities made arrangements to receive the displaced, leaving them to fend for themselves without designated shelters.

While the opposition party Amhara National Movement accuses the TPLF of aggression, the TPLF in turn said that this is an escalation by those who don’t want the Pretoria agreement to work.

Initial reports from local authorities underscore that renewed conflict in Alamata in north Ethiopia in the past days might spread to the surroundings. Although life has seemingly turned to normalcy, the alarming increase in the displacement of locals continues due to fear of another conflict, according to the UN report.

Source: AA

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