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Statement on the situation in Ukraine attributed to UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi

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Statement on the situation in Ukraine attributed to UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi

24 February 2022 Also available in:

We are gravely concerned about the fast-deteriorating situation and ongoing military action in Ukraine.

The humanitarian consequences on civilian populations will be devastating. There are no winners in war, but countless lives will be torn apart.

We have already seen reports of casualties and people starting to flee their homes to seek safety. Civilian lives and civilian infrastructure must be protected and safeguarded at all times, in line with International Humanitarian Law. 

UNHCR is working with the authorities, UN and other partners in Ukraine and is ready to provide humanitarian assistance wherever necessary and possible. To that effect, security and access for humanitarian efforts must be guaranteed.

UNHCR is also working with governments in neighboring countries, calling on them to keep borders open to those seeking safety and protection. We stand ready to support efforts by all to respond to any situation of forced displacement.

Accordingly, we have stepped up our operations and capacity in Ukraine and neighbouring countries.

We remain firmly committed to support all affected populations in Ukraine and countries in the region.



The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) was established on 14 December 1950 by the United Nations General Assembly. The agency is mandated to lead and coordinate international action to protect refugees and resolve refugee issues. It strives to ensure that everyone has the right to seek asylum and find safe refuge in another state, with the option to voluntarily return home when conditions are conducive for return, integrate locally or resettle to a third country. UNHCR has twice won the Nobel Peace Prize, in 1954 for its ground-breaking work in helping the refugees of Europe, and in 1981 for its worldwide assistance to refugees.