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1.7 Million Children Seriously Affected by Ukraine Conflict: UNICEF

Posted by feww on December 20, 2014

SCENARIOS: 911, 909, 717, 606, 444, 411,
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Ukraine Conflict Forces 147 Schools to Close

Conflict in Ukraine has forced 147 schools to close in parts of Donetsk Oblast where fighting continues, and disrupted the education of some 50,000 children since September 1, said the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in a statement.

“The situation for more than 1.7 million children affected by the growing crisis in eastern Ukraine remains extremely serious. Since March 2014, over 1 million people have been displaced from the conflict-affected areas, including nearly 530,000 people within Ukraine, of whom at least 130,000 are children.”

Some of the schools have been destroyed, while others remain closed due to safety concerns, said UNICEF. “In government-controlled areas 187 educational institutions have been damaged or destroyed.”

Eastern Ukraine:Humanitarian Impact of the Conflict
16 December 2014 – Reliefweb/ACAPS

Death toll in Ukrainian conflict has more than doubled since mid-August, from over 2,000 to at least 4,707¹ as of December 16, according to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).

“Violence has been ongoing in eastern Ukraine despite the ceasefire of 5 September. Heavy fighting and shelling have increased the number of killed and wounded, and between mid-September and mid-December, the number of registered internally displaced increased by over 266,000. A new ceasefire was announced for 9 December, with differing reports as to whether it has been violated.”

Ukraine Disaster Summary

  • At least 4,707¹ people have been killed (including 298 from flight MH-17) and 10,322 others wounded in eastern Ukraine (source: OHCHR/WHO).
  • About 5.2 million people live in conflict-affected areas.
  • About 1.7 million children have been affected.
  • At least 138 children killed or wounded.
  • Some 542,080 people have been internally displaced.
    • Internally displaced women: 271,000
    • Internally displaced children: 130,274
  • Total refugees and asylum seekers who fled to Russia, Belarus, Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Moldova: 597,956
  • Most refugees left with few belongings and are in need of shelter, food and non-food assistance, placing pressure on neighboring regions,” said OCHA.[Sources: OHCHR 15/12/2014, UN 20/11/2014, UNICEF 12/12/2014, UN 15/12/2014]

¹This is a very conservative estimate of the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine and World Health Organization based on available official data. These totals include: Ukrainian armed forces casualties as reported by the Ukrainian authorities; 298 people from flight MH-17; and casualties reported by civil medical establishments and local administrations of Donetsk and Luhansk regions: civilians and some members of armed groups (without distinguishing them). OHCHR and WHO believe that actual fatality numbers are considerably higher.

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One Response to “1.7 Million Children Seriously Affected by Ukraine Conflict: UNICEF”

  1. Roxanne said

    UN access to eastern Ukraine impeded by the government

    GENEVA, January 23 (UNHCR) – The UN refugee agency on Friday expressed concern that new Ukrainian government regulations are undermining humanitarian agencies’ ability to help people in need, creating the conditions for a major humanitarian crisis.

    New security clearance procedures are in place and specific documentation is now required to pass through checkpoints in the east of Ukraine. These new procedures apply to Ukrainian nationals, the United Nations, NGOs, national and some other international humanitarian organisations.

    “These restrictions on movements within the Donetsk and Luhansk regions in the east of the country further complicate an already difficult situation for those forcibly displaced and made worse by the intensified fighting we have seen in recent days, ” UNHCR spokesperson Karin de Gruijl told journalists in Geneva.

    She added: “These practices restrict access to non-government-controlled areas and limit the delivery of needed humanitarian assistance into the conflict zones.” The resolution adopted by the Ukrainian government reportedly entered into force yesterday (Thursday 22 January) limiting all movements in and out of the conflict zones. Yet even before it came into effect, UNHCR had already experienced obstructions on a numbers of occasions when attempting to deliver aid in the east, de Gruijl said.

    The new move follows two resolutions adopted by the government in November: one cutting funding of any government institutions (resolution 595) and the second relating to services in “temporarily uncontrolled territory” (resolution 637). These regulations are creating additional displacement – forcing some vulnerable people to leave their homes and register as IDPs – in order to receive their pensions and other social benefit payments.

    “UNHCR is concerned that the plight of people living in non-government-controlled areas is worsening by the day and the conditions are being created for a major humanitarian crisis,” de Gruijl said.

    UNHCR established a presence in Donetsk in late December as a part of a wider United Nations initiative to meet the acute needs in the region following security assurances received from the de facto authorities.

    Since the third week of December, UNHCR has managed to provide some aid in Donetsk. It includes warm blankets, jackets and reinforced plastic sheets for fast temporary repairs to damaged windows and roofs. UNHCR has placed a small number of staff in Donetsk to provide further assistance ahead of February, one of the coldest months in Ukraine. UNHCR has prepositioned a further 3,500 blankets, 3,500 bed linen kits and 7,000 towels in Donetsk.

    So far this year, the UN refugee agency has been able to deliver to 2,800 vulnerable IDPs residing in five Donetsk collective centres. Similar aid has been provided to the Donetsk city hospital that serves the most of the affected population.

    Ukrainian government estimates of the number of people internally displaced vary widely, from 659,000 (according to State Emergency Services) to 921,000 (according to Ministry of Social Policy).

    A complicating factor is that according to some reports received by UNHCR, many displaced people have registered with the Ministry of Social Policy as IDPs for the sole purpose of transferring their pension and move back to their usual homes once their pensions and social benefits have been collected. UNHCR is working with authorities in Ukraine to improve IDP data collection systems, including more accurate numbers of people displaced by the conflict.

    UNHCR calls on all parties to the conflict to respect International Humanitarian Law, to facilitate the movement of civilians affected by the conflict, ensure the unhindered movement of humanitarian aid organisations and to guarantee the safety of aid workers.

    In addition to those internally displaced, some 245,510 Ukrainian citizens have applied for international protection in the Russian Federation as reported by the authorities, while some 244,326 Ukrainians applied for other forms of stay in Russia (applications for citizenship, temporary/permanent residence permit, compatriots’ resettlement programme), though many are using the visa free agreement.

    The number of Ukrainians seeking safety in other neighbouring countries has also increased, but the majority pursue forms of legal stay other than asylum (since January 2014): Belarus (663 seeking asylum; 59,637 pursuing other forms of stay), Moldova (140 asylum; 5,344 other).

    In the EU, some 11,187 Ukrainians have applied for international protection, with most applications lodged in Poland (2,253), Germany (2,205) and Sweden (1,255).

    © UNHCR 2001 – 2015

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