More than 4 million fled Ukraine in five weeks: UN

Refugees from Ukraine arrive at Berlin’s central railway station this week (CNS/Fabrizio Bensch, Reuters)

More than 4 million people have fled Ukraine in the past five weeks, and half of them are children, two United Nations agencies have said. Source: Crux.

“Children make up half of all refugees from the war in Ukraine,” UNICEF, the UN children's agency, said on March 30 in a media release that included data from UNHCR, the UN refugee agency.

UNICEF estimated that 2 million children have fled in search of safety across borders, and an additional 2.5 million children are displaced within the country. That means about 60 per cent of all children have been forced from their homes since the conflict started on February 24, it said.

The UNHCR reported that 6.5 million people have been displaced internally within Ukraine and more than 12 million more have been affected in the areas hardest hit by the war. “Humanitarian needs are increasing exponentially,” it said.

With the latest figures, nearly 10 per cent of the 44 million people who lived in Ukraine before the conflict have become refugees, according to the UNHCR estimates as of March 30. Those figures could be higher, it added.

“The situation inside Ukraine is spiralling,” said Catherine Russell, executive director of UNICEF.

“As the number of children fleeing their homes continues to climb, we must remember that every single one of them needs protection, education, safety and support,” she said.

Poland has taken in the majority of refugees, 2.3 million, according to the UN, and more than 1.1 million of them are children, with hundreds of thousands also arriving in Romania, Moldova, Hungary, Slovakia and the Czech Republic, it said.

FULL STORY

One in 10 Ukrainians is a refugee, half are children, U.N. agencies say (By Carol Glatz, CNS via Crux)

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