Posted 14 апреля 2023,, 08:12

Published 14 апреля 2023,, 08:12

Modified 14 апреля 2023,, 08:19

Updated 14 апреля 2023,, 08:19

UN agency warns Ukrainian refugees about threats of sexual violence

Figure of the day: the number of Ukrainian refugees has exceeded 13 million people

14 апреля 2023, 08:12

UN agency warns Ukrainian refugees about threats of sexual violence

Since the start of the SMO, more than eight million Ukrainians have left abroad, and another five million have moved to safer areas inside their country.

Ivan Zubov

The world media regularly cite data on the number of Ukrainian refugees, both those who are forced to change their place of residence in Ukraine itself, and those who have left its territory for different countries.

The total number of emigrants, according to rough estimates, has already exceeded eight million people. Data on border crossings since the beginning of the Russian border crossing in Ukraine on February 24, 2022 indicate that 20.4 million people left Ukraine and 11.9 million entered back.

Most of them – one and a half million - are now in neighboring Poland, about a million in Germany, a little less than half a million in the Czech Republic, and about an equal number of them were distributed in Italy (169 thousand), Spain (161 thousand) and Great Britain (158 thousand).

However, for some reason, the world media ignores the number of Ukrainian citizens who came to Russia. So, earlier UNHCR The UN reported that by August 30, 2022 to Russia arrived more than 2.4 million Ukrainian refugees in Poland – more than 1.3 million people in Germany – more than 971 thousand people in the Czech Republic more than 423 thousand. 

The UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) has created a special section on its website dedicated specifically to Ukrainians. It contains operational information for asylum seekers.

In particular, it is reported that about five million Ukrainian refugees are included in the European protection and support programs to receive assistance within the framework of the laws of a particular country.  

The same number – about five million – in Ukraine and the so-called internally displaced persons (IDPs), said Stephen Rogers, deputy head of the International Organization for Migration (IOM), and every fifth such family brings up children aged 1 to 5 years.

About half of Ukrainian internally displaced persons, according to the IOM, rent their homes, about a third live with relatives, friends or acquaintances, and the remaining 20% either had their homes in regions free from hostilities, or were forced to settle in territorial collective centers (TCCs).

Be vigilant!

Special attention on the website of the UNHCR Agency is paid to the problem of sexual violence, to which refugees who are helpless in many respects are quite often subjected.

In particular, it suggests reporting such cases to the specified addresses and phone numbers, and explains that sexual exploitation and violence are unacceptable behavior and are prohibited for all United Nations staff and partner NGOs. They shouldn't:

"To have sexual relations with someone in exchange for money, work, preferential treatment, goods or services.

Have sexual relations with any child under the age of 18.

Engage in any other form of sexual humiliation, degrading or exploitative behavior."

In addition, it is proposed to report their suspicion of sexual exploitation and violence:

"Your report will be treated carefully, and it will be strictly confidential.

What is sexual exploitation?

Any actual abuse or attempted abuse of a vulnerable position, differential power or trust for sexual purposes. This includes human trafficking and prostitution.

What is sexual violence?

Any actual sexual activity or threat of sexual activity carried out with the use of force or in unequal or coercive conditions.

Sexual exploitation and abuse can happen to anyone — men, women, boys and girls — at any age, with or without disabilities, regardless of their sexual orientation or gender identity and under any circumstances."