The war in Ukraine has taken thousands of lives, caused untold destruction, displaced millions and resulted in unacceptable violations of human rights and international humanitarian law. The situation for many in Ukraine remains desperate, amid “relentless” shelling of civilian targets and infrastructure, the UN’s Emergency Relief Coordinator, Martin Griffiths, said recently.
Speaking at the General Assembly 11th Emergency Special Session, UN Secretary-General António Guterres said: “The one-year mark of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine stands as a grim milestone — for the people of Ukraine and for the international community. That invasion is an affront to our collective conscience. It is a violation of the United Nations Charter and international law. It is having dramatic humanitarian and human rights consequences. And the impact is being felt far beyond Ukraine.”
The Ukraine refugee crisis is the largest displacement crisis in the world. Nearly 8 million people have fled to neighbouring countries and 5.4 million people have become internally displaced.
Amid reports that violence is escalating in the east, latest UN estimates indicated that more than 7,000 civilians have been killed in Ukraine in the last year, with 12,000 injured, but the actual toll is certainly higher. Attacks on civilians and infrastructure must stop.
The Vienna-based independent international Commission of Inquiry, appointed by the Human Rights Council, has found that war crimes and violations of human rights and international humanitarian law have been committed in Ukraine.
The war goes far beyond Ukraine. It has inflamed a food, energy and finance crisis which is affecting some of the world’s most vulnerable people, countries and economies. There is no solution to the global food crisis without ensuring full global access to Ukraine’s food products and Russian food and fertilizers. Under the Black Sea Grain Initiative, more than 21.3 million tonnes of corn, wheat, oil and other food items have been shipped across the Black Sea to markets worldwide.
Russian forces in Ukraine faced fresh accusations of war crimes on Thursday as UN-appointed independent human rights investigators released the latest findings of their ongoing probe.
11 000 children have arrived in Slovakia from Ukraine since the war began. Read the inspiring stories of four responders who were among the first to help and continue to give support to refugee families in Slovakia today.
The UN plan, which also paves the way for Russian food and fertilizer to reach global markets, will help to stabilize spiralling food prices worldwide and stave off famine, affecting millions.
For the people of Ukraine, the Russian invasion is a waking nightmare, and a humanitarian disaster on a terrifying scale. But the war is also fast becoming a matter of life and death for vulnerable people around the world.
The members of the UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Ukraine will give a hybrid press conference in Geneva to launch its comprehensive report. The report follows their oral update to the Human Rights Council (HRC) last September.
"Our world is in big trouble.
Divides are growing deeper.
Inequalities are growing wider."
— António Guterres
"Today marks a sad and tragic milestone – six months since Russia’s 24th of February invasion of Ukraine.
During this devastating period, thousands of civilians have been killed and injured, including hundreds of children.
Countless others have lost their family members, friends and loved ones."
— António Guterres
"In five days, Ukrainians and Russians will mark Easter. This holiday unites the Orthodox Christians in both Russia and Ukraine -- as well as Catholic Ukrainians -- in celebration.
Easter is a season for renewal, resurrection and hope."
— António Guterres