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3.4 mln children in Ethiopia out of school due to conflict, climate shocks: UN

More than 3.4 million children across Ethiopia do not have access to school, the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (UNOCHA) disclosed late Monday.

In an Ethiopia Situation Report, the UNOCHA said more than 3.4 million children, including 1.7 million girls, do not have access to school due to the impact of conflict and climate shocks across the East African country.

The UNOCHA said in Ethiopia’s northern region of Tigray alone, more than 2.3 million children, which include 1.8 million girls, are out of school due to the closure of 2,270 schools across the region.

The Tigray region has suffered devastating damages during a two-year-long conflict between government-allied troops and forces loyal to the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF). The conflict has left tens of thousands dead and millions in need of urgent humanitarian assistance.

The Ethiopian government and the TPLF, on Nov. 2, 2022, signed a cessation of hostilities agreement to end the conflict.

The file photo shows students of Jemo No. 2 Elementary School playing at Furi-Lebu Railway Station in Addis Ababa, the capital of Ethiopia, as part of the Children’s Day celebrations, on June 1, 2022. (Xinhua/Michael Tewelde)

The report also disclosed that inter-sectoral coordination is being solicited to support back-to-back school activities in northern Ethiopia, including the reconstruction of school structures and systems.

However, the UN agency said it has received less than half of the funds needed to support emergency education activities across Ethiopia.

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