With the onset of winter, intense snowfall and low temperatures exacerbate the dire humanitarian situation across Ukraine, stemming from the conflict with the Russian Federation. This announcement was made on Wednesday during a United Nations Security Council meeting by Miroslav Jenča, Assistant Secretary-General of the UN for Europe, Central Asia, and the Americas.
Jenča noted that daily reports highlight Russian attacks on crucial civilian infrastructure in Ukraine, many of which have resulted in casualties among the civilian population. According to him, the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights confirmed the death of 10,065 civilians and injuries to 18,679 civilians since the beginning of the full-scale war. However, Yencha pointed out that the actual figures are likely much higher.
The official emphasized that the majority of casualties among the civilian population are the result of shelling with reactive multiple launch rocket systems near the front line. He also mentioned that attacks on populated areas have increased recently, noting the most significant drone attack on November 25.
Jenča stressed that people are also dying due to the significant presence of explosive remnants of war and mines, especially in rural areas. Since August of this year, they have caused the death of 31 individuals and injuries to 98 people, said the Assistant Secretary-General.
As a consequence of the hostilities, hundreds of schools and healthcare facilities have been damaged or destroyed. Since the beginning of the academic year, only half of the 3.9 million children in Ukraine’s controlled territories are attending school, according to the speaker.
“Much like the previous year, 2023 has been devastating for the people of Ukraine. If urgent steps are not taken to change this trajectory, the next year may prove even more unpredictable and destructive,” warned the Assistant Secretary-General of the UN.
The UN also highlighted that since the start of the full-scale invasion, 10 million Ukrainians have been forced to leave their homes, including 3.7 million internally displaced persons and over 6.3 million refugees registered worldwide. They underscored the “long-term damage of this devastating war on the civilian population,” particularly the “impact on the mental health of millions of Ukrainians, which will be felt for decades.”
Source: The Gaze