March 9, 2022
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – More than one million children have fled Ukraine to neighboring countries in less than two weeks since Russia began its invasion of Ukraine, the head of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) said on Wednesday.
At least 37 children have been killed and 50 injured, Secretary-General Catherine Russell said in a statement.
Russell said she was “scared” of the reported attack on a children’s hospital in the Ukrainian city of Mariupol, where officials said a Russian airstrike had buried patients in ruins despite an agreed ceasefire.
“This attack, if confirmed, underscores the terrible toll this war is taking on Ukraine’s children and families,” Russell said.
The bombing, which Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelenskiy called a “atrocity”, took place despite a ceasefire agreed to allow thousands of civilians trapped inside the city to escape.
Mariupol City Council said the hospital had been hit several times by airstrikes, which caused “enormous” destruction. Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said: “Russian forces do not fire on civilian targets.
More than 2 million people have fled Ukraine since Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion on February 24. Moscow calls its operations a “special military operation” to disarm its neighbors and release leaders they call “neo-Nazis”.
Most of those who fled are women and children, as able-bodied men have been ordered by the Kyiv government to stay home to fight.
The war has quickly put Russia in economic isolation as well as provoking almost universal international condemnation. The United States on Tuesday banned the import of Russian oil while Western companies are rapidly withdrawing from the Russian market.
(Report by Humeyra Pamuk; edited by Grant McCool)
More than 1 million children have fled Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian invasion – UNICEF
Source link More than 1 million children have fled Ukraine since the beginning of the Russian invasion – UNICEF