Tigray: Armed Conflict

Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office written question – answered at on 3 February 2021.

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Photo of Lord Alton of Liverpool Lord Alton of Liverpool Crossbench

To ask Her Majesty's Government what assessment they have made of the statement from the UNHCR on 19 January concerning the impact of the conflict in Tigray on Eritrean refugee camps in the region.

Photo of Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)

We note the statement from the UN High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) on 19 January, and welcome the news that they have regained access to the Mai Aini and Adi Harush refugee camps in Tigray. It is clear that the conflict in Tigray has had significant consequences and has displaced hundreds of thousands of people, internally and externally, as well as adversely impacting upon those that were already in need of humanitarian assistance. We have raised our concerns with Ministers in both the Ethiopian and Eritrean governments, making clear the overriding need to protect civilians and adhere to international law and international human rights law.

UK-funded aid agencies in Tigray are working hard to deliver support in challenging circumstances, including shelter, water and healthcare We continue to work with the UN to promote and monitor access and the delivery of humanitarian support to all those who need it, including to civilians in contested areas. The UK continues to press, at the highest levels, for sustained, free and unfettered humanitarian access across Tigray, so that the UNHCR can uphold its mandate towards refugees.

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