Are we about re-run the catastrophic Ethiopian famine of 1984-85?

Dawn, and as the sun breaks through the piercing chill of night on the plains outside Korem, it lights up a biblical famine, now, in the 20th century.”

On 23rd October 1984 the BBC correspondent, Michael Buerk sent this report. It described a  famine that left more than 1 million people dead. The report from Korem described people dying every twenty minutes.  The situation only got worse.

The report shocked the world into action.

But are we on the verge of repeating this tragedy?

Aid agencies are issuing warnings now

This report from the Associated Press quotes the Red Cross:

The Tigray region remains largely cut off from the outside world and Ethiopia has blocked almost all journalists from entering, complicating efforts to verify assertions by the warring sides.

Meanwhile, humanitarian workers have had limited access to the estimated 6 million people in Tigray as food and other supplies run short and concerns about starvation grow.

The situation is “deteriorating every day, every minute,” the president of the Ethiopian Red Cross Society, Ato Abera Tola, told reporters on Thursday as Red Cross entities appealed for more financial support. “There is no area which is not affected by this conflict … the conflict is everywhere.”

The Ethiopia head of delegation for the International Committee for the Red Cross, Katia Sorin, said they still had not been able to reach rural areas of Tigray, a largely agricultural region. The ICRC is one of the few international organizations to maintain its operations in Tigray after fighting began.

“We’re helping, but it’s a drop in the ocean of need,” Sorin said.

The BBC quoted leaked notes from meetings of aid workers.

“Hundreds of thousands might starve to death” in Ethiopia’s Tigray region, according to a government official quoted in a leaked copy of notes taken at a meeting of humanitarian workers.

This crisis is made so much worse by the presence of Eritrean troops in Tigray. As the US State Department has said, it has:

“credible reports of looting, sexual violence, assaults in refugee camps and other human rights abuses. There is also evidence of Eritrean soldiers forcibly returning Eritrean refugees from Tigray to Eritrea.”

The world has been warned – but will it take images like those from 1984-85 before we see action?

 

 

 

 

 

3 comments

  1. Eritreans are stealing spoons, baby diaper and other tiny utensils.

    eritreans are now overwhelmed with fear and shame and they will be suffering from a psychological disorder pertaining to this war crime that their people committed .

    Tigray shall prevail, Sudan will not give an inch from its territory . We are not ethiopians anymore but Tegaru . Tigray will officially be soon a Country . President Joe Biden should act swiftly.
    Where is UNSC, UN , EU, IGAD, AU, and humanitarian agencies when millions starve to death under communication blackout ? Do their action limited to issuing letters bearing warnings They must act as soon as possible , if we have to witness their exclusive authority and magnitude of their authorization over the state members and world .

  2. The tragedy on going in Tigray of Ethiopia should be clear that first the responsibility of the Ruling dictator unelected Abiy Ahmed .
    Second the responsibility of UNSC and world leaders who were very eager to give Peace Nobel prize in Norway but they are very late to avoid war crimes , genocide that has been conducting on millions of people . So the world itself is not in the right place seeing International humanitarian laws and Human Rights are being violating officially.
    And it is not because of there is no proof as facts are in the ground by saying unelected Abiy Ahmed is not allowing to enter UN organs and humanitarian aid organisations is clearly a fake reason . Because there is clear and could not be answered question that unelected PM Abiy Ahmed who give him to allow foreign soldiers to kill ,looting , robbing rape girls and women and to murdering innocent civilians in their home land ? And what kind of Laws ?
    And as we see war crimes , on going genocide on millions of Tigrean inviting by Eritreans , Somalia solders and UAE drones including others that tells us there is no International Laws either at all. If you believe that there is So called UN and its UNSC the two unelected leaders should be taken in to international jail on reasons of war crimes , crimes against humanity and on going genocide on the people of Tigray unless other it is being invited other revenging genocide to be acted sooner or later

  3. From the very beging the Ethiopian PM had planned to cheat the world Novel prize organization under the pretext of peace,but the long plan was to defeat the strong opposition the TPLF. Once TPLF out of the game Dr. Abiy knew there won ‘t be issue of him being the dictator that he likes to be. The Eriterians who know better their president’s long history had said the day the Ethiopia PM visits Eriteria was the begining of evil intentions and the fracture of Ethiopian unity.
    All the evil players of the current chious are hatced in Eriteria.
    Although the TPLF had received what he ought the suffering and the punishment of children, elders, mother’s of innocent by citizen by power hungry dictators needs the attention of peace and democrats and all human beings.
    God bless those who devote their holly humanitarian act to save lives and those who stood to the voiceless and helpless.
    The true behavior of the Ethiopian PM is control dictatorship as his coach the Eriterian president.
    Each second human lives of Ethiopians are dying and what goes around from the evils will come around to them.
    Muchfun.
    Ottawa, Canada.Much

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