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Internally Displaced People who have fled violence in Western Ethiopia. Photo: Eduardo Soteras/AFP via Getty Images

The UN Security Council voiced its "deep concern" Thursday over the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Ethiopia's Tigray region, noting reports of sexual violence against women and girls, per a press release.

Why it matters: This is the first time the UNSC has made a public statement regarding the conflict in the Tigray, though the council previously received five briefings on the topic, Reuters reports.

The big picture: The conflict concerns Ethiopia's federal government and leaders in the northern Tigray region, and is part of a broader power struggle in the country, writes Axios' Dave Lawler.

  • The conflict has stretched for several months and the Ethiopian government has received help from troops from neighboring Eritrea.
  • Eritrean forces have been accused of mass killings and crop destruction, according to Human Rights Watch.

The state of play: U.N. aid chief Mark Lowcock last week briefed the council on the humanitarian crisis in Tigray, warning of acute food insecurity and reported gang rapes of women and girls, some as young as 8, per Reuters.

What they're saying: "The members of the Security Council expressed their deep concern about allegations of human rights violations and abuses, including reports of sexual violence against women and girls in the Tigray region and called for investigations to find those responsible and bring them to justice," reads the statement.

Go Deeper: Ethiopia says Eritrean forces have begun withdrawing from Tigray

Go deeper

3 hours ago - Health

FDA authorizes mix-and-match for COVID booster shots

Photo: Francine Orr/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

The Food and Drugs Administration (FDA) on Wednesday gave its approval for Americans to get booster shots that are different from the COVID vaccine they initially received.

Why it matters: The recommendation from the FDA, which also authorized booster shots for people who received Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines on Wednesday, paves the way for an expansion of booster shots.

GOP congressman forfeits committee seats after indictment

Rep. Jeff Fortenberry. Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Rep. Jeff Fortenberry (R-Neb.) on Wednesday stepped down from his committee assignments after being indicted for lying to federal investigators amid a probe into illegal campaign donations.

What they're saying: In a letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, Fortenberry said he is "grateful for the outpouring of support from my friends and colleagues as we work against the injustice confronting me."

Rahm Emanuel questioned on murder of Laquan McDonald in confirmation hearing

Rahm Emanuel during a Senate Foreign Relations Committee confirmation hearing on Oct. 20. Photo: Sarah Silbiger/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Former Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel spoke about the murder of Laquan McDonald during his Senate confirmation hearing Wednesday to become the U.S. ambassador to Japan, saying that "there's not a day or a week that has gone by in the last seven years I haven't thought about this."

Catch up quick: McDonald was a Black teenager who was fatally shot 16 times by Chicago police during Emanuel's tenure as the city's mayor. The 2014 shooting triggered massive protests, both because of its nature and the fact that the officers' body-cam footage was concealed for years.

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