Multiple press reports describe the current situation in Ethiopia as grim.
- A protracted conflict involving various ethnic groups and Ethiopia’s federal government is now entering its second year, with reported atrocities committed by all parties. Thousands are thought to have perished in the fighting, including women and children. The number of casualties is unknown.
- The government has declared a state of emergency for the entire country, preparing residents in the capital of Addis Ababa to defend their neighborhoods and homes.
- The shelling and bloodletting once contained in northern Ethiopia — the heartland of ancient Ethiopia — is now escalating and spreading south. With many forms of communication severed, reports are difficult to confirm, but armed groups are now positioned a few hundred miles from the capital.
- Nearly 500,000 people face starvation in the north, where an estimated 2 million people have been displaced from their farms and villages, while millions more confront severe food shortages.
- The combatants have prevented emergency aid convoys, carrying food and medicines, from accessing the needy. Some aid vehicles have even been attacked.
CNEWA is monitoring the situation in Ethiopia daily, as we are concerned for the safety and well-being of our CNEWA team in Addis Ababa, our extensive network of friends and collaborators throughout Ethiopia, and for all people of good will in the Horn of Africa. We are in regular contact with our team members, who are deeply concerned about the deteriorating situation on the ground.
Please join CNEWA’s president, Msgr. Peter I Vaccari, in offering prayers to God, invoking the intercession of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Our Lady of Mercy, to end the terror and the bloodshed.