Nearly two-thirds of Ukraine’s children have been displaced in just six weeks and nearly half of the children who remain in Ukraine may face food insecurity, Manuel Fontaine, director of emergencies for UNICEF, said Monday.
"Of the 3.2 million children estimated to have remained in their homes, nearly half may be at risk of not having enough food. Attacks on water system infrastructure and power outages have left an estimated 1.4 million people without access to water in Ukraine. Another 4.6 million people have only limited access,” Fontaine said in remarks to the UN Security Council. "In just six weeks, nearly two-thirds of all Ukrainian children have been displaced. They have been forced to leave everything behind: Their homes, their schools, and often, their family members.”
Fontaine added that the situation for children in Ukraine is even worse in Mariupol and Kherson, “where children and their families have now gone weeks without running water and sanitation services, a regular supply of food, and medical care. They are sheltering in their homes and underground, waiting for the bombs and violence to stop.”
The UNICEF emergencies director also expressed his concerns about the presence of “explosive remnants of war” which can expose children to death and injury, as well as the disruption of education for children across the country.
“Nationwide school closures are impacting the learning — and the futures — of 5.7 million school-age children and 1.5 million students in higher education. In the Donbas region, a whole generation of children have already seen their lives and education upended during the past eight years of conflict,” Fontaine said.