Over 1.42 million students are out of school in northern Ethiopia

More than 1.42 million students will not be able to attend classes in Tigray, Amhara and Afar regions due to the armed conflict in northern Ethiopia, said Education Minister Getahun Mekuria.

“More than 1.42 million students have already been de-schooled (in Tigray) or will be de-schooled (in Afar, Amhara),” the Ethiopian minister said on Twitter, calling the situation “very sad.”

“As a result of the futile TPLF war in northern Ethiopia in Tigray, Afar and Amhara regions, more than 7,000 schools have been fully (some partially) damaged,” he said.

Northern Ethiopia has been plunged into armed fighting since November. The spread of the conflict has worsened the humanitarian crisis. Several agencies and NGOs deplore the difficulties in accessing the population.

On Thursday, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said aid convoys to Tigray had virtually stopped since August 20, with no trucks able to enter the region, where 400,000 people live in famine conditions, according to the UN.

“Food aid stocks are depleted, and new food distributions have stopped, except in areas where supplies were already on their way,” OCHA said in a briefing note.

According to OCHA, at least 5.2 million people, or more than 90 per cent of Tigray’s population, are dependent on external assistance.

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