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Tankers with 155,000 liters of fuel waiting for green light at Semera: UN

Government says there are no pending approvals

Four tankers carrying more than 155,000 liters of fuel are still awaiting approval in Semera, Afar Regional State, UN OCHA says.

No fuel for humanitarian operations has been allowed into Tigray since August 2, 2021, except for two WFP trucks, stated UN OCHA. The federal government blamed the TPLF for the problem, accusing it of disrupting the delivery of aid and blocking food supplied to Tigray region, where over five million people are in need of urgent assistance.

NGOs operating in Tigray reported on January 24, 2022 that they have depleted their fuel stocks with their staff delivering the little remaining humanitarian supplies.  Food partners are facing severe fuel shortages with less than 5,000 liters of fuel (excluding contingency stock) in Tigray, as of January 25, 2022, according to the UN.

Partners, who had been forced to suspend dispatches, said that they were only able to resume operations on January 15, 2022, with some limited amount of fuel allocated by the local authorities, while some food dispatches were suspended due to lack of fuel access.

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OCHA stated in its report that supplies of fuel to the Tigray region via the Semera-Abala-Mekelle corridor was halted since December 14, 2021 due to the ongoing fighting in Afar. 

Mitiku Kassa, Commissioner of Ethiopian Disaster Risk Management Commission, explained that there are no pending approvals of humanitarian aid.

“The TPLF is halting aid in order to misinform the world that the Ethiopian government intentionally is dismantling the aid,” Mitiku said.

Earlier this week, the Government Communications Service (GCS) accused the TPLF of attacking and blocking aid delivery routes via the Afar regional state since December.

“To make matters worse, the group invaded the Abala line, which is a gateway to the Tigray area for humanitarian assistance, and began fire with heavy artillery, restricting aid shipments since December 15, 2021,” it said.

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