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Fighting erupted between Ethiopian forces and rebels of the northern Tigray region this week, ending a months-long ceasefire amid a worsening humanitarian situation in Africa’s second-most-populous country, the Washington Post reported.
The Ethiopian government and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) confirmed in separate statements that clashes had resumed, with each side blaming the other for the renewed violence.
The civil conflict began in the fall of 2020 after Tigrayans held their own elections in defiance of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. The prime minister later launched a military offensive after TPLF forces attacked an Ethiopian military base in Tigray.
Since the war began, thousands have been killed and millions displaced.
In March, the government had declared a truce to allow more humanitarian aid to reach Tigray, but the situation for civilians there remains severe.
According to a World Food Program report released this month, nearly half of Tigray’s 5.5-million population are in “severe” need of food, with malnutrition rates anticipated to rise until the October harvest.
The war has also been marked by allegations of atrocities on both sides: A report by the United Nations last year said that the warring parties had “committed violations of international human rights, humanitarian and refugee law, some of which may amount to war crimes and crimes against humanity.”
Meanwhile, Tigray’s communication and financial facilities have been severed for more than a year, and journalists’’ access within the country has been restricted, making it difficult to gauge the scope of the situation.