The United Nations have confirmed that military forces are impeding humanitarian access to parts of Tigray. The EU has repeatedly called for full humanitarian access to all areas, as well as for the immediate withdrawal of Eritrean troops.
While the Ethiopian authorities have committed to both, the reality on the ground shows that blockades by military forces are severely impeding the ability for assistance to reach rural areas, where the humanitarian crisis is at the worst level. At least 5.2 million people out of 5.7 million in Tigray are in need of emergency food assistance. According to the UN, only about 12 per cent of the three million people in need of emergency shelter and non-food items, have been reached since 3 May.
The use of humanitarian aid as a weapon of war is a grave violation of international humanitarian law and is putting at risk the lives of millions of people. Immediate and full-scale assistance should be provided, in order to avoid starvation. Those responsible for deliberately preventing timely access will be held to account.