The Rt Hon Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park
Minister of State
King Charles Street
Tel: 0207 008 5000
The Lord Alton of Liverpool
House of Lords
24 May 2022
Thank you for your emails throughout April about the ongoing situation in Ethiopia.
The UK remains engaged on the conflict in the north, increased instability in the centre of the country, and the humanitarian crisis arising from both conflict and drought, with almost 30 million people now assessed as in need of food assistance.
I know that the Ethiopia desk here has been in touch with (your correspondent).
His reporting is, unfortunately, consistent with our understanding of levels of malnutrition in the wider population in Tigray. This is why one of our focus areas has been on the UN providing medical and nutrition support through ongoing airlifts, even when delivery of aid by road remains difficult.
That said, the figures provided are striking…
The human rights situation also remains alarming. Human Rights Watch also wrote directly to Vicky Ford, as Minister for Africa, to highlight the findings from their report on western Tigray, which she discussed with them on 28 April. Her full statement is here:
This is, of course, just the latest in a growing number of disturbing reports on abuses and violations being committed in the north of Ethiopia.
You also highlighted conflicting reporting (as there is in any conflict) around the discovery of mass graves. We are building capacity within the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission to investigate and provide accountability. As you know, we were also vocal in our support for a Commission of Experts to investigate atrocities in Ethiopia and continue to press all parties to the conflict to engage as this now starts its work.
Thank you again for your correspondence.
With best wishes,
THE RT HON THE LORD GOLDSMITH OF RICHMOND PARK