GENEVA (AP) — The United Nations health agency said it had been authorized to send medical supplies to Ethiopia’s beleaguered Tigray region for the first time in six months, but fuel shortages are hampering distribution .

World Health Organization Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, an Ethiopian who calls the region home, tweeted on Monday night that the aid shipment that was allowed in represented only a “small part” of what is needed, and said his agency “again calls for unimpeded access to deliver humanitarian assistance.

The supplies include essential medical equipment, personal protective equipment, antibiotics, drugs for malaria and diabetes, treatment for severe acute malnutrition and drugs and supplies for reproductive health, the WHO said.

An airlift of the supplies through the UN’s World Food Program began on Friday, and they are among 33.5 metric tons of planned shipments, the agency said.

Months of political tension between Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s government and Tigray leaders who once dominated Ethiopia’s government – including Tedros – erupted into war in November 2020.

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In June, the Ethiopian government cut off almost all access to food aid, medical supplies, cash and fuel in Tigray. The WFP said last month that three-quarters of Tigray’s population of 6 million “use extreme coping strategies to survive” and more than a third “suffer from extreme lack of food”.

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