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Additional humanitarian aid to Ukraine

Christos Stylianides the EU Commissioner for humanitarian aid and crisis management has announced a new aid package for Ukraine, which includes material and financial aid provided by the European Commission and Member States in a joint gesture of solidarity.

The so-called EU airlift operation consist of three cargo planes which will deliver humanitarian supplies to Ukraine (tents, blankets, sleeping bags and warm clothes) including those in the rebel-held areas. Aid is also being provided by road. In total 85 tons of supplies will be delivered.

The European Union is increasing its humanitarian aid for Ukraine, where the latest surge of violence has deepened an already desperate situation. Thousands of people are suffering from the combined impact of the conflict, displacement, extreme poverty and the harsh winter. The European Commission is pledging an additional € 15 million in humanitarian assistance. The funds are aimed to address the basic needs of the most needy in Mariupol and the other areas affected by the conflict, the internally displaced and refugees, and the returnees who are going back home. The funds cover daily necessities, such as shelter, food, water, healthcare, and warm clothing.

Since the beginning of the Ukraine crisis, more than 900,000 people have been displaced within Ukraine and close to 600,000 have fled abroad. Around 1.4 million in the affected region are highly vulnerable and in need of humanitarian assistance.

Jean-Claude Juncker, President of the European Commission said:  “The European Union is standing shoulder to shoulder with the people of Ukraine who most need help. The European Commission has been providing humanitarian support since the start of this crisis, but now the needs are more acute than ever: and we are acting to help those most vulnerable to get through the latest wave of hostilities and the coldest months of the year. The planes are a symbol of EU solidarity,”

Commissioner Christos Stylianides, who is currently in Kyiv, where he is meeting with the President, Deputy Prime Minister and Chair of the Parliament, added: “The humanitarian crisis in Ukraine is becoming more critical every day and this additional EU aid package is essential for the many struggling to survive in harsh conditions.”

With the new aid package, the EU emergency and early recovery aid, including contributions from the Member States, has increased to € 95 million.

The European Commission has already provided over € 32.5 million: € 11 million in humanitarian assistance, of which around 40% is going to non-government-controlled areas, and € 21.5 million for urgent preparations for the winter and recovery aid. The Commission’s assistance is also addressing the immediate needs of the Ukrainian refugees beyond Ukraine’s borders. Funding coming from the Member States amounts to over € 47 million.

Source: http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-15-3662_en.htm

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