The United States’ “partnership with the people of Ukraine is steadfast and enduring,” declared Secretary of State Antony Blinken in a statement. “We are focused on Ukraine’s urgent humanitarian needs as an important part of our response to Russia’s premeditated, unprovoked, and unjustified attack.”
With the welfare of ordinary Ukrainians in mind, the United States announced nearly $54 million in humanitarian assistance to those affected by Russia’s invasion. This funding includes nearly $26 million from the Department of State and $28 million from the U.S. Agency for International Development, or USAID.
The United States is one of the largest humanitarian donors to Ukraine; its humanitarian assistance now amounts to nearly $405 million to vulnerable communities since Russia invaded Ukraine eight years ago. “This latest tranche of humanitarian assistance will flow through independent humanitarian organizations that deliver needs-based assistance with impartiality, humanity, neutrality, and independence,” said Secretary Blinken.
This assistance will enable international humanitarian organizations to support the people of Ukraine with food, safe drinking water, shelter, emergency health care, winterization, and protection. U.S. funding will also help humanitarian organizations maintain contact between family members who have been separated due to the conflict, hopefully leading to reunification.
The United States commends the hospitality of the neighboring countries in the region hosting fleeing Ukrainians and is engaging diplomatically to support efforts to keep their borders open and assist those seeking international protection. The UN reports that more than 600,000 people have left Ukraine thus far. The frontline states receiving refugees include Poland, Romania, Hungary, Moldova, and Slovakia. In a recent interview, USAID Administrator Samantha Power said, “The Poles have opened up their hearts, their homes; there are warm meals and supplies, diapers and strollers for parents, and clothing.” Administrator Power estimated that as many as “three to five million people” may flow “into these neighboring countries” in the near future.
Secretary Blinken called on the international community to respond to the needs of those seeking protection and to not return asylum-seekers to Ukraine where they would likely face grave danger. The United States welcomes the contributions of other donors toward this crisis response and urges still others to generously support the immediate humanitarian needs in Ukraine and the region.