UN Says Needs $4.2 Billion To Provide Aid In Ukraine This Year

On Monday, the United Nations announced a requirement of $4.2 billion for humanitarian assistance in Ukraine in 2024, addressing the needs of millions of refugees who have fled the war-torn country. While global attention has been focused on the Gaza conflict in recent months, Russia’s ongoing war in Ukraine is approaching its third year in February.

The UN aims to reach 8.5 million people within Ukraine and provide support to 2.3 million refugees and their host communities in eastern Europe. Highlighting the pressing circumstances, the UN emphasized the devastating impact of recent attacks on civilians and the urgency for life-saving humanitarian aid, especially with the onset of a harsh winter.

The full-scale Russian invasion in February 2022 marked the largest European invasion since World War II and resulted in the continent’s most significant refugee crisis since the 1939-1945 conflict. This year, the UN estimates that 14.6 million people in Ukraine, comprising 40% of the population, will require humanitarian assistance, with a focus on the most vulnerable 8.5 million.

UN aid chief Martin Griffiths emphasized the plight of children living in war-affected areas, facing fear, trauma, and deprivation of basic needs. The ongoing attacks have targeted homes, schools, hospitals, and essential infrastructure, posing severe threats to the fabric of society.

At a joint press conference in Geneva, Griffiths and UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi launched the regional refugee response plan seeking $1.1 billion. The plan aims to assist 2.3 million refugees and their host communities, as 6.3 million people remain displaced across Europe.

Despite challenges, aid workers reached 10.5 million people in Ukraine in 2023, with the 2024 humanitarian response plan seeking $3.1 billion. The focus this year is on prioritizing those with the most severe humanitarian needs, especially those on the front lines of the conflict.

Grandi stressed the ongoing support needed for millions of refugees, highlighting the struggles faced by Ukrainian refugee children in accessing education and healthcare. Employment opportunities remain limited for refugees, and vulnerable individuals still require assistance to avoid feeling compelled to return to unsafe conditions.

As Russia intensifies its aerial assaults on Ukraine, the UN’s appeal underscores the necessity of addressing the escalating crisis and providing crucial humanitarian aid to those in urgent need.

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