The humanitarian implications of the crisis in Ukraine

Briefing papers
June 2014

The situation in Ukraine is volatile and the potential for a full-blown humanitarian emergency is real. Neither the government of Ukraine nor the international community is sufficiently prepared for what could be mass displacement, human rights abuses and the spread of disease should the violence continue and the political situation remain unresolved, particularly in the country's eastern regions.

Both the government of Ukraine and the international community should act now to end the violence while stepping up preparedness efforts - legislative, financial, material and health - to avoid large-scale human suffering.

Key messages:

  • Both the government of Ukraine and the international community should step up preparedness efforts, including signing a customs agreement to facilitate the transit of emergency supplies and personnel.
  • Donors should begin to fund preparedness, including through financial or technical assistance to the Ukrainian Red Cross.
  • The international community should remind both Ukraine and Russia of their obligations to protect civilians in areas under their control.