• Crisis Severity ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Impact ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Humanitarian Conditions ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Complexity ?
    0 Very low
    Very high 5
  • Access Constraints ?
    No constraints
    Extreme constraints

Key figures

  • 109,945,000 Total population [?]
  • 2,523,000 People displaced [?]
  • 8,860,000 People in Need [?]
  • 4,560,000 Severe humanitarian conditions - Level 4 [?]



About eight million people in Ethiopia are in need of humanitarian assistance, largely as a consequence of internal conflict, international displacement, and recurrent natural hazards.? Intercommunal violence escalated dramatically in several regions throughout 2018, resulting in more than 1.3 million new displacements and increasing Ethiopia’s total IDP population to 2.4 million.? Ethiopia also hosts more than 900,000 refugees.? Over 99% of the refugees come from four neighbouring countries: South Sudan, Sudan, Somalia, and Eritrea, and most currently reside in camp settings.?

Humanitarian needs in Ethiopia are significantly impacted by recurrent natural hazards, in particular drought and flooding. Several consecutive years of drought in southern and southeastern Ethiopia have led to worsening food security and disrupted the livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of farmers and herders. Nearly all of Somali regional state, one of the regions most affected by food insecurity, is in IPC Phase 2 (Stressed) and IPC Phase 3 (Crisis).? Nationwide, approximately 7.88 million people continue to require emergency food assistance.?

INFORM measures Ethiopia's risk of humanitarian crisis and disaster as high at 6.9/10. Lack of coping capacity is of particular concern at 7.7/10.?

Latest Developments


For more information on the humanitarian impact of the locust infestation, please see the relevant paragraph below.


Due to heavy and prolonged rains throughout October, Ethiopia has witnessed repeated episodes of flooding in its Afar, Oromia, SNNP and Somali regions. OCHA estimates put the number of displaced Ethiopians at 202,202. Somali has been the most affected region with 127,524 of its inhabitants displaced. The number of people affected by floods since July 2019 has now reached 570,000. Between 1 October and 4 November 22 people were killed in floods and flood-related events countrywide. The National Meteorology Agency (NMA) has warned that new flash floods might occur as above average rainfall is forecasted for South and South-Western Ethiopia. Properties have been damaged, including latrines, schools and health facilities. Livelihoods were also affected due to the loss of 6,000 units of livestock and the flooding of 11,000 ha of cultivated land nationwide. Subsequently less food will be available for local communities.  The most urgent needs are related to food, shelter/NFI, health, nutrition and WaSH. With bridges collapsing and roads flooded, humanitarian access to the affected areas is severely hindered.?

Humanitarian Access


High constraints

Access conditions have remained relatively stable, except for a localised spike in violence in the Gambela region where wo humanitarians were killed in September and operations were suspended. Checkpoints manned by security forces or non-state armed groups also hinder aid delivery. The government of Ethiopia (GoE) has closed to aid workers the areas most affected by intercommunal violence. In conflict affected Gedeo and West Guji, the GoE claims there are no IDPs, only returnees without humanitarian needs, despite contrasting independent reports. Since May 2019 the GoE has promoted the return of all IDPs to their original residences. This reportedly has resulted in forced returns and secondary displacement where IDPs did not find services in their place of origin and left. Information gaps regarding the administrative and physical obstacles Ethiopians face to access aid persist.

Read more in the latest ACAPS Humanitarian Access Overview.

Desert Locusts


Desert locusts reached Ethiopia from Yemen in June 2019. Since then, swarms have been reported in the city of Dire Dawa and the states of Tigray, Amhara, Oromia, Afar, and Somali with pastures and crops affected. Sizeable crop losses have been reported in Tigray and Amhara. In these two regions respectively 13% and 15% of the population were projected to be on IPC level 3 (Crisis) and 4 (Emergency) between October and January 2020. The infestation was not controlled in several areas as of November 2019. Countrywide insecurity also hinders response efforts. Governmental figures on crop loss will be published in the upcoming weeks and allow for an estimate of the impact of the pest on food security and the livelihoods of farmers and pastoralist communities. While control operations are ongoing, favourable environmental conditions for breeding are expected with new hoppers potentially growing early in 2020. There is a risk of the pest spreading to Kenya, South Sudan and Sudan due to its migratory nature.?

Key Priorities


WASH: 8.2 million people were in need of wash assistance in Ethiopia as of October, an increase from 6.9 million people in January 2018. Hygiene and sanitation facilities in the Oromia and Somali regions as well as in the SNNP and Oromia regions are particularly limited because of insecurity.?

Food: 7.9 million Ethiopians need food assistance. Areas of highest food insecurity include eastern Somali Region, border pastoral areas of Oromia (parts of Guji and Borena) and Somali regions, parts of East and West Hararghe in Oromia, and West Guji of Oromia and Gedeo of SNNP Region. Crisis (IPC 3) is projected to continue in these areas until January 2019, also due to recent conflicts.?

Health: 7.5 million people are in need of health assistance. New IDP arrivals displaced due to the Gedeo-Guji conflict since early June 2018 have stretched the health service capacity in the region, which was already inadequate due to prior displacement. Also, in the area of Jijica (Somali region), hospitals and health facilities were abandoned as health workers fled to escape insecurity. AWD/cholera, measles, yellow fever and dengue fever are the main communicable diseases in Ethiopia.?

Information Gaps and Needs


Lack of access has resulted in very limited information on many hard-to-reach areas and areas where clashes continue.