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Grain from Ukraine Arrives in Ethiopia

Laborers offload bags of grains as part of relief food that was sent from Ukraine at the World Food Program (WFP) warehouse in Adama town, Ethiopia, September 8, 2022.

Some 23,000 tons of Ukrainian wheat arrived in Djibouti by ship late last month. Now, trucks have delivered a portion of that wheat to the World Food Program's main warehouse in Ethiopia, where food aid is desperately needed.

The World Food Program said the 23,000 tons of grain is enough to feed 1.5 million people on full rations for a month.

Some of the grain is destined for Somalia, which like the rest of the Horn of Africa is reeling from severe drought.

While it is not clear how much grain is going to Ethiopia, the WFP has said it hopes to reach 11.5 million Ethiopians in need by the end of 2022.

The WFP said food needs to continue to flow in for that to happen. Ukrainian food exports were cut off for months until Ukraine and Russia reached an U.N.-backed agreement last month to open a corridor for the free flow of food shipments.

The WFP says this is the first humanitarian aid shipment from Ukraine to arrive in Ethiopia under the agreement.

Ethiopia is experiencing drought and conflict in the northern Tigray region which have put more than 20 million people nationwide in need of humanitarian assistance.

The recently renewed clashes between the government forces and the rebel Tigray People’s Liberation Front have displaced more people, and the lack of access to some areas has complicated relief efforts.