Around 25,000 Ethiopians have crossed into Sudan to escape fighting in Ethiopia’s northern region of Tigray, according to Sudanese officials.

Abdullah Suleiman, the head of Sudan’s Commission for refugees, held talks on Saturday with officials from the UN refugee agency (UNHCR) and Health Ministry in Qadarif province to discuss means of providing shelter and relief to the fleeing refugees, the official SUNA news agency said.

The agency said around 25,000 refugees have crossed the Ethiopian border into the Sudanese provinces of Kassala and Qadarif.

During the meeting, Suleiman called on the international community and organizations to provide urgent aid to refugees fleeing the conflict in Tigray.

Ethiopia has launched what it described as law enforcement operation in Tigray after the forces of Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) attacked the northern command of the federal army stationed across the Tigray region, killing soldiers and looting military assets.

The TPLF has dominated the political life in Ethiopia for more than three decades before current Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who hails to the Oromo ethnic group, came to power in 2018.

The Oromo is the largest ethnic tribe in Ethiopia, representing 34.9% of the country’s 108 million population, while the Tigray account for only 7.3%.

*Ahmed Asmar in Ankara contributed to this report

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