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Daily Noon Briefing Highlights: Ukraine, Ethiopia – OCHA

Serhiy is standing near a destroyed house in Sloviansk, Donetsk. Photo taken on 18/07/2022. Credit: Oleksandr Ratushniak

Daily Noon Briefing Highlights –   26 July 2022
 Yesterday, along with our humanitarian partners we delivered 50 tons of relief supplies for 5,000 people to Stepnohirsk, close to the front lines in south-eastern Zaporizka oblast.
The convoy contained life-saving supplies including medicine, food, blankets and other essentials. Some of the supplies will be sent to the neighbouring town of Prymorske, another settlement which is heavily affected by war.
While the new convoy will provide much-needed relief for people in the Government-controlled-areas of Zaporizka oblast, the Humanitarian Coordinator for Ukraine, Osnat Lubrani says that humanitarians in the country are still unable to send supplies to areas that are not controlled by the Government.
Yesterday’s convoy, for example, was supposed to reach the town of Polohy on the other side of the front line. Ongoing hostilities and lack of agreement with parties to the conflict prevented us from going there.
The Humanitarian Coordinator tells us that humanitarians will continue to work on delivering relief convoys to non-Government-controlled areas and the hardest-hit locations. Meanwhile, hostilities continued to severely affect the eastern and southern parts of Ukraine. In Odesa, for example, our colleagues from OCHA witnessed the missile’s attack on July 23rd that struck the port area. No casualties were reported.
The southern city of Mykolaiv, where a large humanitarian aid warehouse was destroyed last week, and the eastern city of Kharkiv have been under daily attacks in the past week. We continue to call on the parties to the conflict to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure, as well as to allow for life-saving aid to reach the hardest-hit locations, including non-Government-controlled areas. This is critical to prevent further suffering.
In Ethiopia,  together along with our partners  we continue to provide critical assistance to millions of people affected by conflict and drought, with food and other relief arriving to the Tigray region by road via Afar.
Some 3.8 million people in Tigray have received food assistance since convoys resumed in April, but distribution has been largely on hold since early July, due to lack of fuel. Likewise, distributing assistance within Tigray is also constrained by a lack of cash.
Last week, just over 2,000 tons of fertilizer arrived in the Tigray capital, Mekelle, with a further 5,000 tons sent to Afar for onward transport to Tigray. This falls short of the 60,000 tons that are needed to support the current planting season.
In Afar Region we are witnessing alarming levels of malnutrition due to drought and conflict. The majority of people who were displaced by conflict have returned to their homes and most of these people still need humanitarian assistance due to lack of basic services and damaged infrastructure. Needs also remain high in the neighboring Amhara region. Since late April, more than 2 million people have received food assistance in Amhara and Afar.
In western Ethiopia, humanitarian and protection needs continue to increase. Ongoing conflict in Benishangul-Gumuz, Oromia, and SNNP regions has caused high levels of displacement and damaged infrastructure and services. The UN and its partners are working to provide assistance, but the response is constrained by insecurity and lack of funding.
Ethiopia is experiencing one of the most severe droughts in the last 40 years following four consecutive failed rainy seasons. According to the World Food Programme, close to 10 million people now require food assistance in drought-affected areas. In these same areas, an estimated 600,000 children will require treatment for severe malnutrition by the end of the year says UNICEF.
Across Ethiopia since April, 10 million people have received food assistance, including in Tigray, and 3.6 million people have received water and sanitation support. The crippling drought is also causing a hunger crisis in Kenya nd Somalia. More than 19 million people have been affected across Ethiopia, Kenya and Somalia, with the number expected to rise. In Somalia, over 200,000 people are in Catastrophe (IPC Phase 5) food insecurity, and there is a reasonable chance of famine in 17 districts if crop and livestock production fail, food prices continue to rise and humanitarian assistance is not sustained to reach the most vulnerable populations.

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