UN calls for aid to Ukraine: Emphasizes refugee support
The United Nations (UN) has appealed for a total of $4.2 billion in aid in 2024 to support those affected by the war in Ukraine and Ukrainian refugees.
A press conference was held at the UN Office in Geneva to launch the "2024 Ukraine Regional Refugee and Humanitarian Response Plan," organized by the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).
The conference featured Martin Griffiths, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, and Filippo Grandi, UN High Commissioner for Refugees.
Griffiths, noting that the war between Russia and Ukraine is entering its third year next month, emphasized its consequences: deaths, despair, and a surge in refugees. He highlighted that 14.6 million people in Ukraine (40% of the population) need assistance, with 4 million internally displaced.
He underlined the staggering number of approximately 3.3 million people living in war zones and under bombardment in Ukraine.
OCHA has requested $3.1 billion in aid for 2024 to coordinate humanitarian responses in Ukraine, aiming to reach 8.5 million people, Griffiths added.
Responding to a question from an AA correspondent about the likelihood of peace negotiations between Russia and Ukraine, Griffiths stated that he operates outside the realm of diplomacy and peace talks.
"We always make humanitarian aid plans worldwide, covering the entire year. If a miracle occurs tomorrow and the war ends, we will be the happiest after the people of Ukraine. We would redirect funding to reconstruction and repair. Significant material needs will also persist post-war," Griffiths said.
Grandi drew attention to the plight of millions of civilians in Ukraine, with challenges intensifying during the winter.
He reminded that over 10 million people in Ukraine have been displaced due to the war, with 4 million internally displaced and 6.3 million seeking refuge in other countries.
Grandi announced the launch of a $1.1 billion aid appeal within the "regional refugee response plan" for Ukraine, aiming to reach 2.3 million refugees and their host communities.
The UN aims to support 10.8 million people this year through the Ukraine regional refugee and humanitarian response plan.