While the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC) understands the security problems created by the spread of the conflict to neighbouring regions has slowed humanitarian assistance to Tigray Region, it remains concerned by the still dire humanitarian situation. The Commission has learned that limited electricity services have resumed in some areas of the region and that, although networks services are not available, some bank branches have opened on the order of local administrators. However, food and cash shortages, the high cost of available food and other basic supplies, as well as the interruption of transportation services within the region due to lack of fuel has made social and other activities difficult for the residents. The federal government and relevant authorities should redouble their efforts to ensure an uninterrupted and improved provision of humanitarian assistance to civilians in the region.

The Commission also continues to receive a high number of reports of closure of businesses owned by ethnic Tigrayan origin residents in Addis Ababa over the past two months. In a monitoring mission focused in two Sub-Cities in the capital, the Commission has learned that although these businesses were suspended on the order of the recently established Illegal and Contraband Trade Prevention and Control Taskforce, many businesses are forced to remain closed due to long waiting periods for final decision on the contraventions and crimes they are suspected of. The Addis Ababa City Administration, the Federal Police and other relevant government authorities must ensure swifter investigation and decision processes.

Some of the residents of Tigrayan origin detained from Addis Ababa and other parts of the country have been transferred to various military and police camps in Addis Ababa and in Afar Region and the Commission’s monitoring shows that many of them have not been allowed visitation rights by their lawyer or their families or been made to appear before a court. No person should be arbitrarily arrested for any reason and all persons detained should be made to appear before the court within the legally prescribed timeframe.