Kyiv – Over 800 Ukrainians have been identified as victims of trafficking and assisted by the International Organization for Migration (IOM), from January to June 2020. This is a striking 40 percentage points increase compared to the first half of the previous year.

On 16 July 2020, the European Union together with the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS) provided to the National Police of Ukraine high-performance personal protective equipment, including more than 150,000 respirators, 170,000 medical masks and 60.000 protective overalls.

On July 6, the World Health Organisation, with funding from the European Union, has scaled up vital supplies for COVID-19 testing to help boost Ukraine’s response to the pandemic. The total amount of the goods worth over EUR 3.5 million include consumables, reagents and critical laboratory equipment to speed up, scale up and automatize PCR-testing. They are procured as part of a larger assistance package from the EU, through its “Solidarity for Health Initiative”, implemented by the WHO Regional Office for Europe and aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19 in Ukraine. In an event today, the part of the supplies were handed over to the Kyiv Regional Laboratory Center by Head of the Local and Human Development Section of the EU Delegation to Ukraine Frederik Coene and WHO Representative in Ukraine Dr. Jarno Habicht. Frederik Coene, the Head of the Local and Human Development Section of the EU Delegation to Ukraine, said: “COVID-19 is a defining challenge for public health and a test of global solidarity. It is extremely important to ship consumables, reagents and critical laboratory equipment to speed up, scale up and automatize PCR-testing. Thanks to WHO as an organization with the necessary technical knowledge it has become a reality. Investing in health must be at the centre of development, it is a necessity and a pathway to security, prosperity and peace. When the world unites to confront a common health threat, anything is possible.” The equipment delivered are of types included in WHO’s list of quality-assured products and will allow speeding up and expanding testing for COVID-19 across the country, detecting the disease in a timely manner and controlling its spread. For example, one PCR thermocycler enables 400-600 additional tests per day. An automatic station for RNA extraction doubles the speed of detecting the presence of the coronavirus RNA. This quick processing saves health care workers time and energy and helps decrease the probability of human error. Dr. Jarno Habicht, the WHO Representative and Head of the WHO Country Office in Ukraine, said: “WHO will continue to bring life-saving shipments and expertise to Ukraine, despite the ongoing global shortage of COVID-19 supplies. The laboratory supplies that WHO is making available, thanks to funding from the EU, will allow for wider and increased testing for COVID-19 across the country. Enhanced testing is critical for detecting the disease in a timely manner, controlling the spread of the virus and saving lives.” The supplies will be distributed to 27 laboratories – the Region Laboratory Centers and Public Health Center – which are on the frontlines of COVID-19 response, and among them cover most of the testing in all regions of Ukraine. “In the first weeks of the pandemic, we have not only responded quickly to the challenges, but also acted for the future. Our team began to develop joint long-term plans with international organizations to strengthen the laboratory capacities. Now we are following this plan and are gradually preparing for a possible second wave of COVID-19. Since the beginning of the pandemic, Ukraine has already increased the number of PCR tests conducted per day — from 300 to 14 000," said Deputy Minister of Health, Chief State Sanitary Doctor of Ukraine Viktor Liashko. This is one of several deliveries that will continue through to August 2020, with supplies to be distributed to laboratories according to needs identified by the Ministry of Health in Ukraine and the Office of President of Ukraine. Galyna Hrynchuk, the Head of the Kyiv Regional Laboratory Center: “Ukrainian laboratories are doing everything in their power for rapid testing of suspected COVID-19 patients. Employees often work long hours, including weekends. Our resources are limited, so this is a very useful and timely help.” The donation of the laboratories supplies such as equipment, consumables, reagents is a part of the European Union’s response to the outbreak of COVID-19, currently affecting 216 countries and territories. The total COVID-19 response package from the EU for Ukraine is EUR 190 million. The funds initially will be used to meet immediate emergency needs, such as procuring essential supplies and training for health-care workers, frontline responders and patients. In the longer term, the assistance will be assigned to strengthening the country’s capacity to respond to public health emergencies. The project is built upon the European Union’s and WHO’s ongoing support to Ukraine. Background information: “Solidarity for Health Initiative” is a joint effort of the European Union and WHO Regional Office for Europe in six countries of eastern Europe and the Caucasus – Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova, and Ukraine. The project is aimed to help prevent, detect and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and strengthen the EU’s Eastern Neighbourhood’s capacity to respond to public health emergencies. The project is implemented by the WHO Regional Office for Europe and WHO country offices, in close coordination with EU Delegations, national authorities and development partners, including those in the United Nations system. Background information about the role of WHO in COVID-19 response: The role of the WHO Country Office in Ukraine is to support the country in creating and strengthening policies for sustainable health development. This includes providing technical guidance in public health-related issues, supporting the development of standards and guidelines, building up local relationships for efficient technical cooperation, and ensuring that public health measures are coordinated and in place during crises. Currently, the Country Office in Ukraine is focusing its work on COVID-19 response and cooperation with the health authorities and other institutions involved in the country-level coordination, planning, and monitoring, case investigation, infection prevention and control. WHO has been supporting improving the national and regional capacities to diagnose COVID-19 via the national laboratory system, and also improving clinical standards and approaches in the country. For additional information, please contact to Ms. Tetiana Dolhova, Communications Officer via
Kyiv, 26 June 2020 After almost three months of closure, practically three out of five official crossing points at the ‘contact line’ have partially resumed their work and allowed Ukrainians with urgent reasons to finally reach essential services and attend to their acute needs and those of their loved ones. Earlier in June, I called for a phased approach to the re-opening and operation of the entry/exit crossing points that is fully coordinated and clearly communicated to the population. The current situation at the crossing points demonstrates that this call was not fully translated into real actions by relevant parties.

Kyiv, Ukraine (2 July 2020)  For already 7 years in a row the Government of Japan has been providing financial assistance to support people and affected communities in eastern Ukraine. In 2020 Japan will allocate USD 4.2 million to deliver assistance through five projects that will be implemented by 4 United Nations agencies and the International Committee of the Red Cross. Within a firm and long-standing cooperation with the government of Japan and government of Ukraine, the United Nations in Ukraine and the International Committee of Red Cross will continue addressing humanitarian needs of the most vulnerable people and work for recovery of the eastern regions  of Ukraine Ukraine.

From COVID-19 to climate disruption, from racial injustice to rising inequalities, we are a world in turmoil. At the same time, we are an international community with an enduring vision – embodied in the United Nations Charter, which marks its 75th anniversary this year. That vision of a better future — based on the values of equality, mutual respect and international cooperation — has helped us to avoid a Third World War that would have had catastrophic consequences for life on our planet.

On June 23, a shipment of medical respirators and masks, goggles, face shields and gowns for healthcare workers fighting the COVID-19 pandemic in Ukraine, arrived in the country.

Sweetened condensed milk consists of one part of concentrated pasteurized whole milk, two thirds of sugar and one fourth of butter or some variation of those parts.   But it can also taste like concentrated comfort and hope. 

Nearly 80 million women, children, and men around the world have been forced from their homes as refugees or internally displaced people. Even more shocking: ten million of these people fled in the past year alone.

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, is today appealing to countries worldwide to do far more to find homes for millions of refugees and others displaced by conflict, persecution or events seriously disturbing public order. This is as a report released today showed that forced displacement is now affecting more than one per cent of humanity – 1 in every 97 people – and with fewer and fewer of those who flee being able to return home.

UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, together with HelpAge International, distributed personal protective equipment and Institutional Hygiene Kits which are specifically adapted to COVID-19 prevention to 10 public collective centres for the older people and people with disabilities. Currently, 761 people are living in these dormitories, who need additional security measures in connection with the pandemic.

12 June 2020 Micro- and small enterprises in government-controlled areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions had to dismiss one in three employees due to the COVID-19 pandemic and quarantine, revealed a survey*, conducted by the International Organization for Migration (IOM).

Kyiv, 10 June 2020 For almost three months, the entry/exit crossing points along the ‘contact line’ in eastern Ukraine have been closed in accordance with measures intended to contain the spread of COVID-19. Hundreds of thousands of Ukrainians who had regularly crossed each month before the pandemic are eager to once again visit family, support relatives in need of care, visit graves of their loved ones, or access education, healthcare and other basic services.

The pandemic of the COVID-19 disease has exacerbated a range of complex social and economic challenges in societies across the world – the problems of gender and wealth inequality, in particular, have been thrown into the spotlight.

This report is a consolidation of United Nations informational products, drafted by the Office of the United Nations Resident Coordinator in Ukraine. The next report will be issued around 23 June 2020. Download report
(Kyiv, 1 June 2020). Across the world, quarantines and restrictions on movement have been imposed to contain the spread of COVID-19. These measures, which are necessary to contain the pandemic and to save lives, must also allow some exceptions for individuals facing extraordinary emergency situations.

The United Nations in Ukraine urges Ukraine to expedite the ratification of the Council of Europe Convention on Preventing and Combating Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence (Istanbul Convention), heeding the voices of 25,000 citizens who have signed a Petition to the President of Ukraine - calling for action.

UN Humanitarian Coordinator in Ukraine Osnat Lubrani shared that Ukraine might face several challenges in the context of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, including food crisis, the risk of relapse, and the need to protect people at risk.

Kyiv, 20 May 2020 More than 2,000 families and business to be contacted for their views The ongoing coronavirus pandemic, along with the preventive measures designed to slow its spread, are putting great stress on Ukraine’s economy, and affecting the lives and livelihoods of millions of people across the country. To determine the exact social and economic consequences of the crisis, the United Nations Development Programme in Ukraine (UNDP), with the support of the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the UN Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women), is conducting an extensive survey of households and small and medium enterprises in all 24 oblasts.

The response to the emergency situation that Ukraine and the whole world are facing now with the COVID-19 pandemic must be grounded in the principles of public trust, transparency, respect and empathy for the most vulnerable. From the beginning, we, the UN Human Rights Monitoring Mission in Ukraine, have been monitoring the human rights impact of the crisis.