Ethiopia’s Tigray crisis: Protecting civilians and delivering humanitarian assistance

Reflecting on the humanitarian crisis in Tigray, panellists discuss current relief efforts, measures to ensure civilian protection, and impediments to scaling-up assistance in the region.

Research event
28 April 2021 — 1:00PM TO 2:30PM

The humanitarian situation in Tigray, brought about by the conflict that began in November 2020, remains dire. An estimated 1.7 million people are displaced across the region, with warnings that 4.5 million people are facing hunger. Levels of insecurity remain high with mounting reports of human rights violations including mass killings, abductions, and sexual violence.

Despite recent improvements in access, fighting continues to impede humanitarian responses, with challenges to capacity and resources also restricting the ability to scale up to the level of provision needed across Tigray. Food assistance is estimated to have only reached between 50-60 per cent of the population, while access to healthcare, including medical supplies, is severely limited, with reports of widespread looting and deliberate vandalism of existing facilities.

At this event, panellists discuss the current humanitarian crisis in Tigray, focusing on the relief efforts underway, measures to ensure civilian protection, and the impediments to increasing assistance. Speakers also consider issues relating to long-term reconstruction in the region. 

This event will be broadcast live on the Africa Programme Facebook page.


Mitiku Kassa, Commissioner, National Disaster Risk Management Commission, Ethiopia

Catherine Sozi, United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Ethiopia

Getachew Kalayu, Director, Planning and Coordination Department, Relief Society of Tigray

Oliver Behn, Director General, Médecins Sans Frontières

Chair: Abel Abate Demissie, Associate Fellow, Africa Programme, Chatham House

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