UNICEF voices concern over the safety of innocent children in Mekelle

November 25, 2020 (Thessherald)–The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has strongly expressed its deep concern over the safety of innocent children, amid the ongoing military build-up around the capital, Mekelle.

In a strongly-worded statement, the child welfare agency stated that “threat of further escalation in Mekelle, Ethiopia, puts children’s lives at risk.”

“UNICEF urges parties to the conflict in Ethiopia to spare children from the impact of hostilities in the Tigray region, now in their third week. Some 500,000 people live in Mekelle, half of them are children. UNICEF is deeply alarmed that the two parties’ threat of a further escalation in the fighting would put their lives and well-being at immediate risk.”

The UN agency urged the federal government and Tigray leaders to end the weeks-long of fighting and resolve their differences amicably at the negotiating table.

“We call upon parties to the conflict to cease the fighting and reach a peaceful settlement. Humanitarian agencies should be allowed urgent, unimpeded and sustained access to all affected areas.

UNICEF called on the warring parties to uphold the safety of humanitarian workers who are supposed to provide life-saving humanitarian assistance to millions of people trapped in the conflict zone without adequate food and water.

“We are also concerned about the safety of hundreds of humanitarian workers who are still in Mekelle and elsewhere across Tigray. We call upon all parties to the conflict to take all necessary measures to ensure their protection.”