Blinken announces $331m humanitarian aid to Ethiopia

Thursday March 16 2023
US Secretary of State Antony Blinken

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (left) and Ethiopian Minister of Finance Ahmed Shide at a UN logistics centre warehouse in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on March 15, 2023. PHOTO | TIKSA NEGERI | POOL | AFP


US Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who is in Addis Ababa, Wednesday announced over $331 million in new humanitarian aid to Ethiopia.

"Today I am announcing more than $331 million in new humanitarian assistance for Ethiopia in FY 2023 through the Department of State and the US Agency for International Development (USAID)," he said.

Blinken said the funding would provide life-saving support for people displaced and affected by conflict, drought and food insecurity in Ethiopia.

The assistance includes $12 million through the State Department Bureau of Population, Refugees and Migration and more than $319 million through USAID. 

This brings the total US humanitarian assistance for the response to the region to more than $780 million in 2023 fiscal year.

Life-saving support


The United States is the largest single-country provider of humanitarian assistance in Ethiopia. 

"Our assistance provides critical, life-saving support, including food, shelter, safe drinking water, sanitation and hygiene, healthcare efforts, education and other key services," Blinken said, adding that this will help deepen the partnership between the United States and Africa.

Blinken arrived in Addis Ababa late Tuesday and has since held talks with Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Deputy Prime Minister Demeke Mekonnen.

The two sides discussed the significant progress in implementing the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement following the silencing of the guns in northern Ethiopia’s Tigray region. 

This progress includes improved humanitarian access and restoration of basic services.

UN logistics centre warehouse in Addis Ababa

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken (left) when he visited a UN logistics centre warehouse in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on March 15, 2023. PHOTO | TIKSA NEGERI | POOL | AFP

Sustainable peace

Blinken reiterated the US support for efforts by the parties to achieve full implementation of the agreement in order to lay the groundwork for a sustainable peace. 

Abiy and Blinken also discussed the importance of accountability for the atrocities perpetrated by all parties during the Tigray conflict as well as the need for an inclusive and comprehensive process of transitional justice. 

Blinken expressed concerns about the situation in Oromia and the need for a resolution through dialogue.

He assured the Ethiopian prime minister of the commitment by the US to help communities suffering from the ongoing drought in the Horn of Africa nation.

"We have agreed to strengthen the long-standing bilateral relations between our countries with a commitment to partnership," Abiy tweeted.