| 25 February 2024, Sunday |

Red Cross sets up international aid supply network for Ukraine

The worldwide Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement is establishing a logistical center in Budapest to transport assistance supplies to Ukraine in the aftermath of Russia’s invasion, and is preparing for an inflow of refugees, according to the German Red Cross on Friday.

“We are preparing a pretty massive operation,” Christof Johnen, chief of international cooperation at the German Red Cross, told Reuters in an interview, adding that the conflict’s complicated dynamics made planning a response exceedingly difficult.

“According to accounts, the battle has also impacted civilian facilities. People are uneasy, therefore they strive to conceal themselves. In formal shelters, but also in informal ones, such as basements, “Johnen stated.

Supplies for trauma treatment are already being sent to Ukraine, but the Red Cross cannot deliver water, food or hygiene items at scale at the moment as the situation is still too unclear and dangerous, he said.

Johnen said the establishment of reception camps for refugees was under discussion, but that there was still no reliable indication of how many refugees might come.

Germany has offered support to Poland and other countries in eastern Europe facing a possible influx of refugees, and said on Friday that the distribution would be coordinated.

U.N. aid agencies said Russia’s invasion could drive up to 5 million people to flee abroad.

At least 100,000 people are uprooted in Ukraine after fleeing their homes, while several thousand have already crossed into neighboring countries including Moldova, Romania and Poland, U.N. refugee agency spokesperson Shabia Mantoo told a U.N. briefing in Geneva.

  • Reuters