The fighting in Ukraine comes after a sizable military build up on the country’s border, where Russian President Vladmire Putin staged around 200,000 troops before beginning a full scale invasion of the country on multiple fronts. It has now become clear that Putin wants to overthrow Ukraine’s democratically elected government. It comes eight years after Russia’s invasion and annexation of Crimea in 2014. The fighting represents one of the biggest security challenges for Europe since World War II, with hundreds of thousands of refugees spilling into neighbouring countries. The conflict has been dubbed “Putin’s War”.
Following several devastating attacks over the first five days of fighting, reports estimate that nearly 400 civilians, among them up to 16 children, have been killed. More than 1,684 people, including 116 children, have also been wounded.
This number is quickly increasing as just today Ukraine’s second largest city, Kharkiv, underwent massive shelling and saw the possible use of cluster munitions. Weapons that scatter over a large area and are notorious for causing harm to civilians. Dozens of people are said to have been killed and hundreds more have been wounded.
More than 100 countries have committed to never using these types of weapons under the Convention of Cluster Munitions. Amnesty International has stated that the use of these weapons may constitute a war crime.
What’s happening at the border is unacceptable. Race should not define your right to safety. Treating people fleeing for safety in a humane way should not be conditional, optional, or viewed as an act of generosity – it is a basic requirement of a decent society, regardless of your race.
How we’re responding
Alongside our continuous support for refugees, asylum seekers and forcibly displaced people globally, we have launched an urgent Ukraine Crisis Fundraiser.
With your donations we’ll be supporting projects (that meet our criteria) who are providing vital aid and services to those still in and fleeing the country, including: emergency medical care, food, shelter, clean water, wash essentials, clothes, legal support, support for the LGBTQIA+ community and mental health support.
We are currently reaching out to our network, including existing partners in the region, to get urgent support to the organisations stepping up to get help to those who desperately need it at this time.
It’s easy to feel helpless in moments like this, but we ask you to respond with love in the face of such calculated and cruel aggression.
Other ways to show your support
- Learn and Share carefully (make sure whatever you share comes from verified sources as unfortunately there is a lot of disinformation circulating at the moment)
- Sign Freedom From Torture’s Petition – “Tell the UK govt: Help Ukrainian refugees!”
- Write to your MPs and call them to stand against the anti-refugee bill
Putin’s invasion is not just an attack on Ukraine. It is an attack on freedom, truth, democracy and humanity.
At Choose Love, we believe that love has no borders. We stand with people in and fleeing Ukraine during this devastating moment in history.