The Ethiopian government has asked the United Nations to rebuild infrastructure in the country’s Tigray region, where there’s been a conflict between the government forces and rebels.
This is part of a project to rebuild the war-torn region and is funded by the World Bank. The World Bank had awarded a $300m grant to Ethiopia in April, to fund a project aimed at assisting communities affected by the conflict. The Ethiopian Ministry of Finance, in a statement on Tuesday, said the arrangement is for the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) to “implement the activities defined by the first objective of the project in the Tigray region” before Ethiopian agencies step in.
Has the conflict ceased?
A “humanitarian truce” was announced in April, following which the World Bank became the first major financial institution to release funds to Ethiopia since the war began. Fighting has since stopped in Tigray, and Addis Ababa has allowed desperately needed humanitarian aid to be delivered by road again after a three-month hiatus. Since it began in November 2020, the conflict – between the federal government and rebels in Tigray – has resulted in several of Ethiopia’s international partners suspending aid to the country.
But since Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed announced readiness for negotiations with the Tigray rebels in June, the World Bank has provided an additional $715m in loans and grants to assist pastoralist communities affected by conflict and severe drought. “UNOPS will implement the project in Tigray until the situation in Tigray improves and allows the government to implement the project through its own structures,” the statement said.