Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Russian Invasion has Made IDP Situation in Ukraine ‘Worse than After Chernobyl’

Paul Goble

            Staunton, September 15 – Pavel Rozenko, Ukraine’s social policy minister, says that the number of internally displaced Ukrainians as a result of Russian aggression in Crimea and the Donbas has reached 1,483,000 – or roughly three percent of Ukraine’s population and a figure many times worse than the number of IDPs as a result of the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster.

            While Ukrainian refugees in the Russian Federation have attracted much international attention thanks to the efforts of the Moscow media Ukrainian IDPs have not. Indeed, they are among the forgotten victims of this conflict (nr2.com.ua/News/politics_and_society/Stalo-izvestno-skolko-v-Ukraine-vnutrennih-pereselencev-106115.html).

            But both the human tragedies of Ukrainians forced to flee from their homes as a result of Russian aggression and the cost of coping with their flight – Kyiv has already spent 100 million US dollars to help – should not be forgotten, especially at a time when some are celebrating the current lull in the fighting as a turn toward peace.

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