News: At least 47,000 fresh IDPs arrive at Endabaguna, Shire from Ten woredas of disputed Western Tigray

A school-turned-IDP site in Shire in Ethiopia’s Tigray Region hosts thousands of internally displaced persons. Photo: IOM/Kaye Viray

Addis Ababa – At least 47,000 fresh Internally Displaced People (IDPs) who fled Ten woredas in Western Tigray which is under the occupation of Amhara Forces, have arrived at Endabaguna, near Shire town in North Western Tigray zone over the past one month, Getu Dejen interim administrator of the Endabaguna Woreda told Addis Standard.

According to Getu some of the IDPs were at Maitsebri IDP center while others have left their homes in Maigaba, Tselemti, Korarit, Welkayit, and Qafta woredas among others since the beginning of March due to renewed persecution and pressures on ethnic Tigrayans. Women, girls, and children are among the IDPs, Getu noted.

Nigus Teklay (name changed for safety reasons) a 39-year-old, who fled Tselemti woreda with three members of his family, a month ago, said “I left before something worse happened to me and my family”. He added that an armed group known as ‘Fano’ has forced ethnic Tigrayans to leave the area.

 “I have counted one month since I was displaced into Endabaguna. There is no humanitarian aid, food and medicine. I am feeding my children by begging and vending some materials on the street,” said Nigus.

Rahel Hayle, a 20 years old young girl, who get Endabaguna from Maitsebri in mid-March after traveling on foot for ten days said “armed groups in the area were harassing women, and girls and committing crimes against ethnic Tigrayans” the she decided to leave.

Rahel is among the IDPs who were sheltered at the Maitsebri IDPs center since the war broke out in 2020. Her family fled to Sudan and she lived in precarious situations without much humanitarian aid for two years in Maitsebri before she arrived in Endabaguna weeks ago.

“Even after I arrived here three weeks ago, I didn’t get any assistance. I sleep on the floor, it is challenging especially for girls and women,” she said.

Getu, the interim administrator, said the number of IDPs in Endabaguna was about 8000 at the beginning of the month of March, and spiked to 47,000 over the past few weeks. He said these newly arriving IDPs are not getting humanitarian aid such as food and medicine.

Despite reporting their situations to several NGOs and aid agencies, Getu noted that no meaningful  response has been received. He added that the IDPs don’t have proper shelter and are living in life threatening conditions with children and women begging for food on the streets.

The administrator of Tigray’s North Western Zone Surafel Araya, corroborating these situations called on concerned bodies to give due attention to the newly displaced IDPs arriving in the zone.

The issue of IDPs remain a challenge to the newly established Tigray Interim Administration as IDPs, despite reports of improved humanitarian flow to the region since the peace deal, complain lack of adequate aid. In January Addis Standard reported that more than 54, 000 IDPs sheltered at an IDP camp in Abiy-Adi, central Tigray, were suffering from severe shortage of food and medicine supplies. AS 

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