Ethiopian refugees flee to Sudan, where doctors have set up a makeshift clinic

·2-min read

In the past few days alone, thousands of Ethiopians have fled to neighbouring Sudan to seek refuge amid a brutal flare-up between government forces and milita from the rebel Tigray region in the north. Among the refugees are three doctors who have set up a makeshift clinic in the Hashaba camp to help treat their wounded countrymen. FRANCE 24 reports.

Doctor Daryelowm Guesh was doing the rounds in a hospital in Humera, in northwestern Tigray, when the city suddenly came under violent artillery attack. "Many wounded people came, and people were … screaming everywhere,” he recalls.

After his narrow brush with death, Guesh sought refuge in the Hashaba migrant camp in Sudan, where he, along with two other doctors, now tend to dozens of wounded countrymen every day – many of whom tell chilling stories of dead bodies lining their route toward the Sudanese border.

“I was fleeing into the woods with many other people. There were bombings and the army were firing shots. I came across a militia, and they attacked me by throwing grenades,” says a young man receiving treatment for his hand, torn off by one of those grenades.

Another patient, an elderly, wheelchair-bound man, is being treated for a head injury after being attacked by a group of men in the street.

“They were civilians, youngsters, but I don’t know who they were. Some had stones, others sticks, axes, and machetes,” he says.

Since Saturday, some 25,000 Ethiopians have crossed into Sudan from the restive north, according to Sudanese news agency Suna.

Tigray’s heavily armed regional government broke away from Ethiopia’s ruling coalition last year, and objects to the postponement of national elections until next year. In defiance of this move, it held a regional election in September.

Each side regards the other as illegitimate, and the federal government says members of the Tigray region’s ruling “clique” must be arrested and their arsenal destroyed.

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