Human Rights Watch have called for a UN inquiry into the alleged indiscriminate shelling of urban areas in Tigray by Ethiopian federal forces.
When the conflict in Tigray began last year, artillery attacks on the city of Mekelle and the towns of Humera and Shire, hit hospitals, schools, markets and homes, According to Human Rights Watch eighty-three civilians, including children, are said to have been killed and a further 300 wounded.
Laetitia Bader, HRW’s Horn of Africa director says “At the war’s start, Ethiopian federal forces fired artillery into Tigray’s urban areas in an apparently indiscriminate manner that was bound to cause civilian casualties and property damage, These attacks have shattered civilian lives in Tigray and displaced thousands of people, underscoring the urgency for ending unlawful attacks and holding those responsible to account.”
In Parliament, Lord Alton has also tabled the following Question: to ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the statement by the President of the Ethiopian Red Cross Society that 80 per cent of Tigray is currently unreachable for aid access and that people are at risk of starvation.
And has submitted the following Parliamentary Questions:
1.To ask HMG what assessment they have made of reports that the government of Ethiopia has made two transfers worth $500 m of military equipment and cash to the government of Eritrea in exchange for the engagement of Eritrean soldiers in the Tigray region of Ethiopia?
2.To ask HMG what assessment they have made of satellite imagery showing that two refugee camps housing Eritrean refugees and dissidents in the Tigray region have been destroyed in the fighting, that 20,000 Eritrean refugees are consequently missing and that as many as 10,000 of them may have been forcibly repatriated to Eritrea?
3. To ask HMG whether, after 100 days of conflict in the Tigray region of Ethiopia, the FCDO will follow the EU in suspending the UK’s aid to Ethiopia, which was £300m in 2020, until there is a cessation of violence and an agreement to participate in inclusive and independently mediated peace talks?