Humanitarian charity, Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC), has expressed concern about escalating tensions in Ethiopia following military action in the Tigray Region last Wednesday by the Federal Government.
It said Ethiopia is already contending with mass displacement and widespread humanitarian needs, and stressed that everything should be done to resolve the issues.
The Ethiopian Federal Government has also declared a six-month state of emergency in the Tigray Region, saying that it took the actions after the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) carried out attacks on Ethiopian National Defence Force bases in the Tigray Region last Tuesday.
NRC Secretary-General, Mr. Jan Egeland, in a press statement, warned that rising hostilities in the Tigray region are threatening the immediate safety of hundreds of thousands of people.
“Any increase in violence would foreshadow further regional destabilisation and humanitarian disaster. We call upon all parties to resolve tensions through dialogue and to take all appropriate measures to end military action,” he said.
Mr. Egeland said there are currently 1.82 million people internally displaced across Ethiopia, and a further 790,000 refugees seeking protection from other conflicts in the East Africa region,
He added that humanitarian needs are high and resources to meet them scarce, especially during the pandemic.
“Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize recipient, must manage this crisis carefully and be steadfast in preventing the humanitarian situation from deteriorating further,” he said.
Mr. Egeland said while the world focuses on the United States elections, regional leaders and the broader international community must remain alert and work actively to prevent Ethiopia from sliding further into conflict.