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Crisis in the Ukraine

BMZ steps up cooperation with eastern Ukraine – assistance for refugees


BMZ State Secretary Friedrich Kitschelt handing over twelve emergency vehicles funded by the BMZ to the Ukrainian disaster relief services

Press release of 02.10.2015 |

Berlin – The BMZ is making an additional 15 million euros available to Ukraine to provide assistance to refugees.

The funding will primarily be used to support children of refugee families in the city of Mariupol in eastern Ukraine. In Mariupol, where more than 70,000 people from territories controlled by pro-Russian separatists have found refuge, aid projects for children and their family will be launched, for example to provide care for people in great need, or to offer psychosocial support. The funding will also be used to help restore urban water supply. As the city's water infrastructure was heavily damaged during the fighting, the population has no or very limited water supply. It is also planned to establish ten community centres in Mariupol.

Development Minister Gerd Müller emphasised that the funding was an important sign of solidarity with the people of Mariupol: "With winter at the doorstep, providing fast and unbureaucratic support is more important than ever. With our aid package we are supporting refugee children and their families – without losing sight of the rest of the population. Restoring water supply will benefit all the inhabitants of Mariupol. Ukraine can rely on Germany's support in that difficult situation."

BMZ State Secretary Friedrich Kitschelt (left) with Mykola Tschetschotkin (right), head of the Ukrainian disaster relief services and Vasyl Antoshchenko, interpreter of the German Embassy at the handing over twelve emergency vehicles funded by the BMZ

During his trip to Kiev, BMZ State Secretary Friedrich Kitschelt also handed over twelve emergency vehicles funded by the BMZ to the Ukrainian disaster relief services.

Ten vehicles will be deployed in the east of the country, the other two vehicles will also be used in the capital of Kiev. Due to the ongoing crisis, the Ukrainian disaster relief services, which are also responsible for fire-fighting and emergency service operations, have to cope with considerable challenges. "In the current situation, the Ukrainian disaster relief services are facing severe shortages of resources – often with dramatic consequences, especially for rescue operations. We care about the people in Ukraine and their situation. That is why we are providing concrete support with all-terrain emergency vehicles," State Secretary Kitschelt explained.

With around 1.4 million refugees in their own country, the situation of the people in Ukraine continues to be difficult. Over the past two years, the BMZ has increased its funding for Ukraine fivefold, bringing it to about 136 million euros for this year.


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