Refugees are forced to fetch water from streams that are drying up quickly, creating a high risk of waterborne diseases.
The UNHCR has expressed grave concern over the deteriorating conditions facing Eritrean refugees inside the camps in the Tigray region.
“After 3 weeks of being unable to pass due to the security situation, UNHCR staff managed to reach Mai Aini and Adi Haroch refugee camps in the Ethiopian region of Tigray,” UNHCR spokesperson Boris Cheshirkov said at a press conference in Geneva on Friday.
This UNHCR staff’s entrance is first since the air strikes that took placein and near the camps.
“Our team found the refugees in a state of fear and struggling to get enough food to eat, and they lack or have limited access to medicine and clean water,” he added
According to Checherkov, refugees have told UNHCR that there has been an increase in the number of preventable deaths, which is more than 20 cases, in the past six weeks.
The refugees also stated that all of them are close to the general deterioration of the situation, especially the lack of medicines and health services.
Clinics in the camps have been closed since early January after they eventually ran out of medicine.
This was accompanied by a lack of fuel, and the inability to pump clean water or transport it by truck to the camps.
Refugees were forced to fetch water from streams that dry up quickly, creating a high risk of waterborne diseases.
The UNHCR spokesperson explained that despite concerted efforts, the total inability to transport supplies to the area and the growing extreme hunger was “a growing concern.”
With the camp running out of food and no more stock for distribution, refugees reported that they had to sell their clothes and a few belongings in an effort to afford meals.