Currently, there are over 2,000,000 Refugees in Kiev,who have either had to leave the Crimean Peninsula when it was invaded by the Russians or who had to flee as the war in the Eastern part of Ukraine became too much to bear.
Our liaison in Ukraine is Natasha Kim. I have put her profile on our Staff page. I am hoping she will be able to contribute some firsthand accountsof what is happening in Kiev, from the Refugees' points of view, as our information here in the U.S. is very limited.
We will will be posting photos from the military hospital and from the Refugee camps as soon as we can in our Gallerysection. Abbie Smith will also post links to news stories about what's going on in Ukraine on our News Page so check there often for current information.
While the situation in Ukraine is political,the effect on the civilian population is very much ahumanitarian issue.The number of people and families suffering from the conflict have risen dramatically since February of 2014 when the Revolution broke out inMaidan.
Here's Are Some Statistics Concerning the Situation in Ukraine:
According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA):
●Sporadic fighting continues in the areas of Donetsk airport, Shyrokyne, Avdiivka and Shastia: manycivilians continue to seek refuge in underground shelters there.
●Funding for humanitarian operations remains low. Violence continues to trigger additionalhumanitarian suffering and poses significant threat to the lives of civilianswho continue to seek refuge in bomb shelters or cellars of their dwellings for extended period of time. Between 8 and 12 May, heavy shelling was reported near Kurakhove and Marriinka. The Kurakhove route is the only entry point for humanitarian aid and personnel to nongovernment controlled areas in Donetska and Luhanska Oblasts (an Oblast is like a State). As a result, the checkpoint was closed on several occasions, and this affected civilians and humanitarian organization movements. Casualties continued to be reported almost daily.
●Between mid-April 2014 and 14 May 2015, at least 6,334 people have been documented as killed and 15,752 as wounded in the conflict zone of eastern Ukraine.This is a conservative estimate of the UN Human Rights Mission in Ukraine (HRMU) and the World Health Organization based on available official data.... The HRMU and WHO believe that the actual numbers of fatalities are considerably higher.
●By 21 May, the number of internally displaced persons (IDPs) registered by the Ministry of Social Policy (MoSP) reached 1,299,770 people.
●Ukraine has the ninth largest IDP population in the world,according to the Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC). Meanwhile, the number of Ukrainian nationals who have fled to neighbouring countries is also on the rise.
●According to the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), by 21 May about 857,000 Ukrainians had sought asylum, residence permits or other forms of legal stay in neighbouring countries – an increase of about 23,000 people over the past two weeks. T
●Freedom of movement for civilians across the contact line between government forces and armed movements in eastern Ukraine remains a major concern. Following an order issued by the Governor of Luhanska on 12 May, movements across the contact line in the oblast are restricted, with onlypedestrians and humanitarian cargo allowed to pass to non-government controlled areas.
●Most of humanitarian aid is being delivered to nongovernment controlled areas in Luhanska oblast through Donetsk. In Starobelsk, in the government-controlled areas of Luhanska oblast,civilians have to wait in queues for a long time both for submitting the documents and receiving the passes to cross the contact line.
●It was reported that people have to come to the relevant government offices for getting passes several times as no information is available whether the pass is ready. This takes time and financial resources of those who applied for passes. Protection cluster has raised concern, particularly, about theplight of civilians in insecure areas who may want to flee, but for whom passes are still a mandatory requirement.
●Access to healthcare services is severely constrained across the east, and in non-government controlled areas in particular because of lack of medicines, medical equipment. There is an increased burden over healthcare facilities due to the influx of IDPs.
●Flow of food commodities from government-controlled territories is constrained, andfood pricesremain high in non-government controlled areas, where fuel supplies are scarce and many petrolstations have stopped selling petrol and diesel.
●By 4 May, in Donetska Oblast, food security cluster distributed 8,600 food vouchers in government-controlled areas (GCA) and 7,390 food parcels in non-government controlled areas (NGCAs).
●In GCAs, IDPs living with host families and in collective shelters remain the most vulnerable groups in terms of food shortages.