The United States handed over 1,500 rolls of heavy-duty plastic sheeting to the International Organization for Migration (IOM).
The sheeting distributed over the weekend is expected to support U.S. efforts to provide emergency shelter for tens of thousands of Ethiopians displaced by the ongoing conflict in the Tigray region, according to the press statement from the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. U.S. Ambassador Geeta Pasi handed the shelter supplies over to IOM Chief of Mission Maureen Achieng and Deputy Commissioner Yasin Nesibu from Ethiopia’s National Disaster Risk Management Commission (NDRMC) at a warehouse in Addis Ababa.
The ongoing conflict has forced an estimated one million people to flee their homes—many of whom are now sleeping outside or in crowded shelters. The donated shelter supplies include sleeping mats, blankets, and basic household items—including kitchen sets with pots, pans, and cooking utensils. IOM will immediately transport and distribute these new shelter materials and supplies to people in need across communities in Tigray.
“Over the past five months, the United States has been working tirelessly with our Ethiopian and international partners to provide emergency assistance to the 4.5 million Ethiopians affected by the crisis in Tigray. USAID’s airlift of durable plastic sheeting is on top of the already USD $305 million of humanitarian aid,” said Geeta Pasi, the United States Ambassador to Ethiopia.
The IOM Chief of Mission, Maureen Achieng, added that: “The generosity of the United States as demonstrated through the emergency shelter materials being donated today to support populations in Tigray displaced by conflict comes at a moment of dire need on the ground. These materials will ensure that even as we work on lasting solutions to the displacement, the affected IDPs can still live lives of safety and dignity.”
These relief supplies are part of the United States, IOM, United Nations, and international humanitarian organizations’ broader contribution to help people affected by the Tigray conflict. Together the international community has contributed over USD $500 million in humanitarian assistance to Tigray. Within that enormous expression of international support, the U.S. has provided 61 percent of the existing humanitarian assistance—$305 million in food, nutrition, health care, shelter, relief supplies, safe drinking water, and programs to protect the most vulnerable.