The United Nations has condemned Eritrea, accusing it of preventing hundreds of peacekeepers from crossing from Eritrea into Ethiopia.

The UN ordered its regional force to withdraw to Ethiopia after the Eritrean government cut off its fuel supplies. But the UN says only six vehicles have been allowed to leave, some troops have been threatened at gunpoint and now their rations have been stopped. Eritrea denied blocking their departure saying its supplies had simply run out.

In an emergency session on Friday, the 15-member UN Security Council expressed “deep concern about the impediments and logistical constraints” faced by the force. Jean-Marie Guehenno, head of the UN Department of Peacekeeping Operations, told reporters: “It’s a very serious situation. We’re running out of fuel, we’re running out of food.”

Losing patience
The UN peacekeepers were sent eight years ago to monitor a border security zone after the war which killed tens of thousands of people between Eritrea and Ethiopia in the late 1990s.

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