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USAID boss to visit Tigray this week

ADDIS ABABA (SD) – United States (US) is dispatching a delegation led by USAID Administrator Samantha Power to hold talks with Ethiopian government on the conflict in Tigray region.

According to a statement from USAID, Power will ‘meet with humanitarian assistance partners and observe how USAID-provided food is stored and prepared for delivery throughout Ethiopia, including to the Tigray region, to feed families who need it most.’

Power is due to meet Ethiopia’s national security adviser and hopes to meet Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, a senior USAID official said. Washington hopes she will secure unhindered humanitarian access to Tigray.

“There will be I think continued punitive measures as long as we are unable to access those populations,” the official said.

Power will also travel to Sudan on her trip starting Saturday as Western powers seek to support the civilian-backed transitional government after decades of authoritarian rule, USAID said.

The United Nations has warned that food rations in the Tigrayan capital Mekele could run out this month if more aid is not allowed in.

The Ethiopian government denies blocking food aid.

Fighting in Tigray which has lasted for over eight months now has spread to involve other regional states such as Afar, Amhara, Somali and Oromo.

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