Egeland fears “senseless bloodshed” will take place in eastern Ukraine

Jan EgelandPhoto: Cornelius Poppe / NTB

The Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) fears an escalation of the war in eastern Ukraine and warns of mass flight and the enormous suffering of the civilian population.

“The escalation of the war in eastern Ukraine will result in terrible bloodshed and mass exodus from the eastern regions, including Luhansk and Donetsk,” NRC General-Secretary Jan Egeland, who visited Ukraine this week, said.

“People who have already been through eight years of fighting will now be exposed to new trauma. In some places, the escalation can lead to entire cities being besieged,” he said, warning against “senseless bloodshed.” 

Children with trauma

NRC staff in Ukraine report dealing with traumatized children terrified of the slightest noise and families lacking everything from cancer medicines to baby diapers. The water and power supply are damaged, as are homes, hospitals, and roads.

“It is heartbreaking to think about the atrocities these people are forced to experience once again and to know that we are not able to get life-saving help into many affected areas. We ask for an immediate ceasefire to stop this tidal wave of human suffering,” Egeland said.

The Norwegian Refugee Council is particularly concerned about the sick and the elderly who have not been able to flee the war-torn areas and who are difficult to reach with help.

Emergency aid packages

“This week, together with local partners, we have delivered emergency aid packages with food to people trapped in the middle of the crossfire in several villages in eastern Ukraine. We now fear that this may be the last food delivery they receive. 

“Families in Ukraine have experienced hell on earth in the last two months. Humanitarian needs have exploded. Despite generous financial support from governments and individuals around the world, funding is insufficient. Aid organizations need more funds faster to be able to step up the relief work and meet the ever-increasing needs across the country,” he said.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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