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Abey Ahmed's Silent Weapon of War on Tigrai - Mass Starvation

By Eyob Tadelle Gebrehiwot
Tigrai Online Jan. 21, 2021

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Characteristically and paradigmatically true to his natural color, Ethiopia's myopic PM Abey Ahmed, is using mass starvation and deliberate blockage of access to humanitarian assistance as a collective punishment against the people of Tigrai, pari passu, as a full scale humanitarian crisis is unfolding in the region due to the ongoing war.

The war on Tigrai, which has been going on for more than two and a half months now, has witnessed unspoken tragedy and unimaginable human sufferings.

Many reliable reports and first-hand accounts have continued to vindicate that all the gruesome crimes and atrocities against humanity under the sun have been committed, and are being committed, by the joint forces of Abey Ahmed and Eritreas Isaias Afewerki:

Thousands of CIVILLIANS are said to have been killed in mass, beheaded, decapitated and extra-judicially executed.

Hundreds of CIVILLIANS are said to have been killed in shelling and aerial bombardments. Also, women and young girls have been raped by armed gangs.

The war has claimed tens of thousands of lives on both sides.

Close to seventy thousand Tigrians have fled to neighboring Sudan and tens of thousands have become internally displaced. A report of the UNHCR indicates that refugees have continued to arrive at remote border points that take hours to reach from the nearest towns in Sudan - many women and children, most left with barely any belongings and arrived exhausted from walking long distances over harsh terrain.

Mass killings, arbitrary arrests, forced conscription, vandalism, arson and lootings of private and public properties, inter alia, is ubiquitous.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi, for example, confirmed that he has received credible information about “grave and distressing human rights abuses, including killings, targeted abductions and forced return of refugees to Eritrea and military incursions which are consistent with satellite imagery showing fires burning and other signs of destruction at refugee camps.” The UN High Commissioner underscored these as “concrete indications of major violations of international law.”

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Beyond and above all these war crimes, the government has blocked, deliberately and purposely, access to humanitarian aid for over 4.5 million people who need urgent emergency relief. Of course, Abey’s government has blocked the main road that connects Tigrai to Addis Ababa for almost three years now in a bid to obstructing such basic supplies as food items, agricultural and manufactured products and medical supplies from reaching Tigrai, to steamrollering investment flows, inter-regional trade, business and economic activities, hence to exacerbate the rampant poverty and to create socio-economic and political upheaval in the region.

As a continuation of this cruel policy, the government is using mass starvation as a weapon of war – a silent weapon - to starve innocent Tigrians, as an unprecedented humanitarian crisis is unfolding due to the ongoing war. It has closed all doors to humanitarian assistance - aid agencies and humanitarian organizations, including UN humanitarian organizations, are not allowed to enter and operate in Tigrai.    

The depravity and lack of humanity surrounding the war on Tigrai shows the deliberate intention to cause ultimate harm and humiliation to victims - a collective punishment to the people of Tigrai, which by any standards is clear violation of international humanitarian law.

With all its abominable facets - ranging from massacres, mass killings, indiscriminate shelling to aerial bombardments in populated areas, and above and beyond all these - mass starvation of a whole population, is the war on Tigrai, rightly speaking, a war against humanity and a genocide!

The world cannot, and must not, stand by while Abey's government is starving innocent and vulnerable Tigrians for political purpose.

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