Ukraine Situation: UNHCR Operational Update, 28 December 2015 - 19 January 2016
- 372 trucks (planned 402) with shelter materials and NFI kits sent to GCA (250 trucks) and NGCA (122 trucks) in 2015.
- 8,116 beneficiaries as of planned 8,600 received multi-purpose cash assistance in 2015 across Ukraine.
- 29 Quick Impact Projects (QIPs) across Ukraine currently implemented.
- 57,300 Beneficiaries receiving winterization assistance.
- USD 41.5 million Requested for the operation in 2015
- Leading the Protection and Shelter/NFI Clusters.
- Supporting the Government of Ukraine on IDP and refugee/asylum issues.
- Advocacy on freedom of movement, humanitarian access, and other concerns.
- Provision of humanitarian assistance, especially around the line of contact and NGCA.
- Situational Overview: The overall security situation in Eastern Ukraine remains relatively calm with sporadic clashes and tension along the line of contact.
- Protection Concerns: Freedom of movement across the line of contact remains a primary concern, including long queues at checkpoints with freezing temperatures.
- Community-based Protection: Engagement with the Roma community in light of the National Strategy on Protection and Integration of the Roma Minority into Ukrainian society up to 2020.
- Assistance Provided: Humanitarian access in non-government controlled Donetsk region remains limited for UN agencies although in Luhansk some activities have been resumed following ‘registration’.
The overall security situation in Ukraine remained relatively calm with some sporadic armed clashes along the line of contact where explosive remnants of war (ERW) related incidents continue to result in casualties among military personnel and civilians.
In terms of legislative developments, the Ukrainian Parliament adopted Law No. 2166 on 25 December, which brings IDP legislation in line with the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement. Among other measures, the law extends the definition of IDP to foreigners and stateless people who previously resided permanently in non-government controlled areas including Crimea. It also simplifies the procedure for IDP registration, and strengthens guarantees of IDP rights, including in regard to voluntary return and integration. The law came into effect on 13 January 2016. In addition, on 29 December, Resolution No. 1094 came into effect, which approved the Comprehensive State Programme for Support, Social Adaptation, and Reintegration of Citizens of Ukraine that are internally displaced for a period until 2017.
Regarding freedom of movement, UNHCR Field Teams and Protection Cluster report long queues at various checkpoints and crossing points, which forces people to sleep over at ill-equipped locations. In non-government controlled Luhansk, people crossing the checkpoint at the Stanytsia Luhanska Bridge mentioned that it is extremely difficult and unsafe to cross the provisional slippery and icy bridge made of wood. Other agencies have attempted to carry out repairs but have so far been prohibited from doing so.
UNHCR continues to implement its winterization plan, distributing non-food items (NFIs) and heating fuel to affected communities both in the government controlled areas and non-government controlled Donestsk. UNHCR is prioritizing assistance to communities in so-called ‘grey areas’, located close to the line of contact. The distribution of the winterization cash assistance is also scheduled and will be conducted directly by UNHCR Field Offices, targeting a total of 4,000 beneficiaries in Dnipropetrovsk, Kharkiv, Mariupol and Zaporizhzhia regions. This cash programme will be implemented in partnership with FidoBank.
Mr. Pablo Mateu took up his duties as the new UNHCR Ukraine Representative in the first week of January 2016. Mr. Mateu presented his credentials to the Government of Ukraine during a meeting with Deputy Minister for Foreign Affairs of Ukraine Sergiy Kyslytsya and UNHCR Europe Bureau Director Vincent Cochetel in early January.