December 1 local time, UNHCR spokesman Balosh called on the Ethiopian authorities to provide emergency humanitarian access to some 96,000 Eritrean refugees in the Tigray area at a regular press conference at the United Nations Office at Geneva. Since the beginning of November, the outbreak of conflict in the region has interrupted key food and other key items.
Balosh said that the refugee camps now lack enough food, and hunger and malnutrition will become a real danger to threaten refugees, which is also a continuous warning from UNHCR since the conflict. In addition, there are some unconfirmed reports of attacks, abductions and forced recruitment of refugees in camps. Since the conflict, UNHCR has been unable to reach refugees in the region.
Balosh pointed out that the UNHCR reiterated its strong call for the security of refugees. No civilian should be targeted in the conflict, and all parties must take all possible measures to ensure that refugees, internally displaced persons and humanitarian workers are not harmed. At the same time, the agency called on the Ethiopian government to continue to fulfill its responsibilities in hosting and protecting Eritrean refugees.
In addition, UNHCR and its partners recently launched a $147 million humanitarian response plan to provide shelter, water and food to assist an increasing number of refugees in eastern Sudan. Balosh also said that since the beginning of November, nearly 46,000 Ethiopian refugees have fled to neighboring Sudan.