Tuesday, July 16, 2024
 
 

Romanians offer heartfelt support to Ukrainian refugees at the border

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The war following the Russian invasion in Ukraine changed many lives. At the Romanian borders, we can see people that are heartbroken and have no prospects for the future. Their home in Ukraine had been destroyed.

“In just seven days, one million people have fled Ukraine, uprooted by this senseless war. I have worked in refugee emergencies for almost 40 years, and rarely have I seen an exodus as rapid as this one,” the UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said on March 3 in a statement on UNHCR website. Hour by hour, minute by minute, more people are fleeing the terrifying reality of violence. Countless have been displaced inside the country,” he said, adding that unless there is an immediate end to the conflict, millions more are likely to be forced to flee Ukraine.

And yes, the numbers are very hight indeed. At Romania’s borders, the authorities are doing their best but the enormous amount of people make the waiting lines in Siret border up to 50 hours, according to romania.europalibera.org.

According to the website, almost 130,000 Ukrainians entered Romania in the past week, almost 30,000 at the Siret border crossing. The tragedy is higher by the fact that a very big percentage of them are children.

UNICEF in collaboration with Digi 24 TV station is holding the campaign “together for freedom” that has also the support of Romanian Prime Minister Nicolae Ciuca.

“Innocent victims of Russian military aggression from Ukraine need our help,” he said. “Every child that we support will ease the pain of our neighbors and friends that are suffering from the terror and shock of the war. I invite you to saw solidarity, to donate for the future of our children from Ukraine,” Ciuca added.

On February 28, EU Home Affairs Commissioner Ylva Johansson travelled to Romania to assess the situation on the ground and the need for assistance and coordination by the European Commission when it comes to providing protection to those fleeing the war in Ukraine.

At  Siret border in Romania, the power of humanity has united the people from the two countries. Mothers with children in their arms, children that can barely walk, all are astonished by the way Romanians are welcoming them. Hundreds of volunteers wanted to get involved and they displayed their solidarity separately from the authorities. Dozens of tents on each side of the road are waiting for the Ukrainians. And it’s rather heartbreaking to see all this amount of people coming to Romania, after they have spent such amount of time on the road and at the borders, some of them having such a difficult time arriving there in order to escape Ukraine, a country that it’s not safe to live anymore. Most of the women and children that passed the borders left a husband, a father, or a brother back home. People that they love and they are afraid they will never see again. And we see in their eyes that they are heavy-hearted.

A big percentage of Ukrainian citizens that entered our country are children. UNICEF and other NGOs are trying their best to accommodate them. The surprise is that among the NGOs and authorities, civil society stepped up and they want to make a difference. And they did. It’s a big movement also in social media. People from everywhere the country are offering free accommodation. The churches, the universities, the restaurants, celebrities, influencers, comedians, all of them got involved in helping them either to find a place to stay and have a hot meal, medicines, or to assure them that they will find a transport to arrive at the countries they want to go because most of them are not staying. The luckiest ones have somebody to meet them at the borders. The others are just transiting Romania to get to the countries where they have family or friends.

 

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