The people of Tigrai are under siege by Ethiopian, Eritrean and Amhara governments
SJT PRESS RELEASE
Tigrai Online August 6, 2021
The United Nations
Re: The Tigray Crisis: People Under Siege
Security and Justice for Tigray (SJT), a Tigrayan community advocacy group, has been repeatedly pleading to the international community regarding the premeditated war in Tigray and its tragic consequences. However, it is highly perplexing to see the international community tolerating tyranny by choosing to remain silent, while the people of Tigray are cruelly and desperately suffering from starvations and unimaginable kinds of war crimes of atrocious nature.
SJT is writing this letter again to express its deepest concern and to earnestly call for your immediate tangible actions to save the lives of millions who are living in darkness and are at the brink of death due to manmade starvation and lack of essential drugs and medical supplies.
As you may recall, on 28 June 2021, the Ethiopian government announced a unilateral ceasefire which the international community has applauded as a promising step. However, the facts on the ground reflect different stories. The regime is acting tyrannically, viciously, deceitfully, and irresponsibly to nullify and deny basic services to let the people of Tigray suffer and perish, replacing the firearms with siege as weaponry of war.
The international community is not seen strongly denouncing and moving into tangible actions when the Ethiopian government openly denied basic services including transportation, banking, electricity, water, telephone, internet, and healthcare. Mr. Abiy’s government has blocked and continues to block all Tigray-bound transportation systems to deliberately prevent the supply and replenishment of food and other lifesaving needs. The peoples’ rights to withdraw money from banks have been outlawed. The entire Tigray is in total darkness because of a deliberate power cut. Water pipelines have been deliberately and callously destroyed to break the supply and chock the people. Telephone and internet services have been blocked to impede information flow and to forbid media outlets from reporting and letting the international community know what is happening on the ground in Tigray.
Provision of health services has practically become impossible. The government has obstructed and made the delivery of essential drugs and medical supplies impossible. Seeing healthcare professionals being constrained, overwhelmed, and bewildered on what to do to help the people who are suffering from pains and complications is mind-boggling. Individuals with chronic health conditions like diabetes, hypertension, etc. are in danger of health crisis due to a lack of maintenance drugs. Millions have become vulnerable and susceptible to communicable diseases as a result of the forced sexual assaults and gang-raping that have shocked the world. Some
women have been reported to have contracted HIV/AIDS, hepatitis, and other sexually transmitted diseases. Some surveys have reported that majority of the healthcare facilities have been destroyed and or looted and only a few are partially operational.
The people of Tigray are now in desperate conditions, living in total darkness, being disconnected from the rest of the world. They are denied access to life-sustaining services and the situation is a matter of life and death necessitating urgent attention and practical action. Otherwise, Mr. Abiy’s government, without doubt, is determined to mercilessly wipe out Tigrayans as a society and if the international community continues to remain silent and fail to stop the government’s vindictive and vicious actions by all means possible, the consequences will be unspeakably catastrophic, and history will remember it as one of the worst mistakes committed in the modern world.
Therefore, SJT earnestly calls for your immediate action to condemn the evil acts of the government, in no uncertain terms, and put pressure to immediately restore all disconnected basic services including transportation, banking, electricity, water, telephone and internet and allow the unfettered delivery of life saving foods, essential drugs and medical supplies.
Statements of concerns, now and then, will not produce any result to help and rescue the people of Tigray.
Teka Neguse, PharmD
President, Security & Justice for Tigrayans (SJT)
AC: Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, CNN International, FR 24, Al Jazeera, BBC