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Over 31,000 people enter Ethiopia from conflict-affected Sudan: IOM

IOM Ethiopia Chief of Mission @Abiwane visited Metema, the border town in Ethiopia which has seen over 30,000 people arriving due to the conflict in Sudan. PHOTO via @IOMEthiopia

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia | The number of people arriving in Ethiopia fleeing from armed conflict in Sudan has surpassed 31,000, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) has disclosed.

The UN migration agency, in its latest situation update issued Friday, said the armed conflict in Sudan is forcing hundreds of thousands of people to flee to neighboring countries.

Since April 21, over 31,000 people have arrived in Ethiopia through multiple border crossing points in the East African country’s Amhara, Benishangul Gumz, and Gambella regions, the IOM said.

It said arrivals at border crossing points are being monitored and additional flow monitoring points are being established as required to scale up assistance.

The IOM expressed its concern that the large number of new arrivals is a major challenge for processing capacity and speed. It said inadequate access to life-saving services are needed, which include food, non-food items, health as well as water, sanitation and hygiene.

It further said the increase in medical cases arriving at the border due to the breakdown of the health system in Sudan has posed another challenge to the response efforts.

Protection services are a major concern, with child protection and gender-based violence case management requiring urgent attention while also additional shelter facilities are urgently required, it said.

Sudan has witnessed deadly armed clashes between the Sudanese Armed Forces and the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces in the capital city of Khartoum and other areas since April 15, with the two sides accusing each other of initiating the conflict.

According to the Sudanese Doctors Union, the number of civilian deaths since the beginning of the clashes has risen to 863 with 3,531 injuries.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) recently said over 1 million people have been displaced since the conflict began on April 15, fleeing to safer locations inside and outside Sudan.

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