Ethiopia: Humanitarian Access Situation Report, October – December 2019

This report is produced by OCHA Ethiopia in collaboration with humanitarian partners. It covers the period October - December 2019. The next report will be issued on March 2020.

OVERVIEW

• The operational environment to relief operations in Ethiopia remained permissive through the reporting period.

• Localized armed confrontations, ethnic violence, intra-community/ clan tensions, and social unrest continued to challenge operations and the safety of the population and aid workers.

• Most access incidents reported relate to active hostilities with the Unidentified Armed Groups (UAG) as well as between ethnic groups, the bulk of which in West and Southern Oromia.

• Armed clashes and social unrest continue to pose an indirect threat to aid workers. During the reporting period, one aid worker was killed and two injured and six temporarily arrested while carrying relief activities.

• In Gambela, the circumstances behind the killing of two aid workers in September remain unclear, and partners continue to work under very difficult conditions and uncertainty.

• In Amhara, ethnic tensions involving ethnic-Qemant as well as with neighboring communities of Benishangul Gumuz and Tigray, and particularly Amhara- Oromo inter communal conflict (mainly in Dire Dawa and Hararges) escalated during the reporting period.

• In Somali region, the access situation has improved, particularly in the boundary dispute in southern Oromia – Somali, though tensions along boundary areas and resource-based clan conflicts continue.

• In some areas, such as Awi zone (Amhara) or Gedeo zone (SNNPR), authorities continue to deny the presence of IDPs, limiting their fundamental right to access humanitarian assistance. Partners continue to engage to find pragmatic ways to assist the affected population “regardless of status” as per the humanitarian imperative of leaving no one behind and the principles of operational independence, neutrality, and impartiality.

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