Again, U.S. raises red alert over worsening humanitarian crisis in Ethiopia, says 900k people at risk

USAID spokesperson Rebecca Chalif said both leaders discussed "how USAID can work together with the UN to address humanitarian needs across Ethiopia and overcome major challenges to providing life-saving assistance to people in need." 

The United States again on Friday alerted the international community about the worsening humanitarian crisis in Ethiopia, asserting one more time that 900,000 people are facing famine-like conditions in Tigray, Amhara and Afar regions.

The warning was made when the Administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), Samantha Power, met on Friday with Daniel Endres, United Nations Assistant Secretary-General (ASG) and Regional Humanitarian Coordinator for East Africa.

USAID spokesperson Rebecca Chalif said both leaders discussed “how USAID can work together with the UN to address humanitarian needs across Ethiopia and overcome major challenges to providing life-saving assistance to people in need.” 

Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power 
Former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power

She said Administrator Power expressed “her deep concern about the growing humanitarian needs across Ethiopia, as an estimated 900,000 people face famine-like conditions in Afar, Amhara, and Tigray regions due to conflict, and as the crisis in the north converges with worsening drought in the south.” 

“Administrator Power and ASG Endres discussed the urgent need for unhindered humanitarian access in Tigray, noting that just a fraction of the life-saving supplies needed have been able to reach Tigray, and that the response has been chronically hampered by systematic restrictions on aid, including fuel, cash and critical medical supplies,” she wrote. “They also spoke about the importance of the restoration of essential services across the north, including electricity, banking, fuel supply, and telecommunications. Administrator Power emphasized the challenges faced by donors in the year ahead in addressing the growing needs throughout Ethiopia with limited financial resources.”

Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed © Donat Sorokin/TASS Host Photo Agency 
SOCHI

She added that “Administrator Power thanked ASG Endres for his leadership in Ethiopia and the region and reiterated USAID’s steadfast commitment to supporting the people of Ethiopia, and working with humanitarian partners to ensure they can deliver assistance to all in need.”

The warning came only a day after Ambassador David Satterfield was named the new United States Special Envoy for the Horn of Africa to tackle the lingering crises in Ethiopia, Sudan, Somalia and elsewhere. He is replacing Jeffrey Feltman who was appointed in early 2021.

Satterfield will be taking over in the coming days once Feltman ends his appointment, U.S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken said in a statement on Thursday.

Chief White House Correspondent for

Simon Ateba is Chief White House Correspondent for Today News Africa. Simon covers President Joe Biden, Vice President Kamala Harris, the U.S. government, the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank and other financial and international institutions in Washington D.C. and New York City.

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