Ukraine updates: UN seeks $5.6 billion in humanitarian aid

The UN appealed that the $5.6 billion could reach 15.3 million Ukrainians in most pressing need this year. Meanwhile, fighting continues in the east of Ukraine. DW rounds up the latest.

The United Nations said that $5.6 billion (€5.2 billion) were necessary to supply humanitarian aid to Ukraine and the millions of refugees who fled the war-ravaged country.

The UN estimated that, currently, 21.8 million Ukrainians were dependent on humanitarian assistance.

“The war continues to cause death, destruction and displacement daily, and on a staggering scale,” UN humanitarian chief Martin Griffiths said in a statement.

“We must do all we can to reach the hardest-to-reach communities, including those close to the front line,” he added. “The suffering of the Ukrainian people is far from over — they continue to need international support.”

The UN said $1.7 billion of the amount it sought was necessary for humanitarian aid to the more than four million Ukrainian refugees dispersed across eastern Europe.

Women and children made up around 86% of the overall refugee population, the UN estimated. “Europe has proven capable of bold, collective action to help refugees,” said Filippo Grandi, the UN high commissioner for refugees.

“We must not, however, take this response, or the hospitality of host communities, for granted,” he added. “Continued international support and solidarity is needed, until refugees are able to return to their homes in safety and dignity, which must also remain a priority.”

Here are some of the other notable developments concerning the war in Ukraine on Wednesday, February 15.

Zelenskyy calls for prompt military support after Russia attacks

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy called for allies to make a swift decision to send further military support to Ukraine as NATO defense ministers met and Russia attacked the country’s eastern front line.

Russia’s artillery fire was focused on Bakhmut, a ravaged city in Donetsk province and a main target for Russian President Vladimir Putin. Its capture could provide Russia with a stepping stone to further cities in the region and potentially give momentum to its offensive.

NATO’s defense ministers were meeting in Brussels for a two-day gathering to discuss the war and ammunition stocks.

Zelenskyy said Russia was rushing to advance as far as it could before Ukraine could muster strength. “That is why speed is of the essence,” Zelenskyy said in an evening video address.

“Speed in everything — adopting decisions, carrying out decisions, shipping supplies, training. Speed saves people’s lives, speed brings back security, and I thank all our partners who realize that speed is important,” he added.

Russia claims success in offensive in eastern Ukraine

Russia reported a breakthrough through Ukrainian defense lines in part of the Luhansk region.

“During the offensive… the Ukrainian troops randomly retreated to a distance of up to three kilometers (1.9 miles) from the previously occupied lines,” the ministry said on the Telegram messaging app.

“Even the more fortified second line of defense of the enemy could not hold the breakthrough of the Russian military,” the ministry added. The ministry did not say in which part of the eastern Ukrainian region of Luhansk the offensive took place.

Ukraine has recently reported increasingly heavy Russian shelling along the frontline in the east of the country and describes the situation as difficult, even if many Russian attacks could have been repelled.

Russia now holds areas of the southern regions of Kherson and Zaporizhzhia, including its nuclear plant, nearly all of Luhansk and over half of Donetsk, including its regional capital.

Extraordinary session of Russian parliament ahead of war anniversary

Two days before the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, the upper chamber of Russia’s parliament is set to hold an extraordinary session, Russian media reported.

Vyacheslav Timchenko, a senior lawmaker, told the Russian news agency RIA that the meeting would center on the adoption of laws regarding the integration of four Ukrainian regions into the Russian Federation.

Russian President Vladimir Putin is set to hold his annual speech during a joint meeting of Russia’s two houses of parliament, the federal assembly, on 21 February.

Russia holds at least 6,000 Ukrainian children for ‘re-education’ — report

A US-backed report that was published on Tuesday estimated that Russia was holding at least 6,000 Ukrainian children, with the possibility of higher numbers, in sites in Crimea. Russia’s primary purpose was stated to be political re-education.

Germany took in over 1 million Ukrainians last year

“To date, we have offered shelter to 1,062,000 Ukrainians from Putin’s brutal attacks,” German Interior Minister Nancy Faeser told the Düsseldorf-based Rheinische Post, highlighting Germany’s efforts to provide shelter for war refugees from Ukraine in 2022.

Eight out of ten refugees came to Germany from Ukraine last year, she added. Faeser called for a more equal distribution of war refugees across Europe.

los/fb (AFP, dpa, epd, Reuters)

Related Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

© 2023 Global News - Theme by WPEnjoy · Powered by WordPress