Refugee exodus reaches a million from Ukraine war
United Nations estimates claim that about 2% of the Ukrainian population has fled the war.
As Kherson becomes in the stronghold of Russia, the United Nations reports that a million people have already fled the country since the Russian military operation began a week ago.
Restrictions imposed on the strategically significant city include a curfew from 8 pm till 6 am, while cars transport food, medicine and necessities to households.
According to a New York Times article, Kherson’s mayor, Igor Kolykhaiev, said that a group of 10 armed Russian officers who have taken over the city call told him that they will be setting up a military administration there.
Mariupol has also seen intensified fighting recently, as Russian forces and their aligned troops surrounded the city.
According to UN estimates, hundreds have been killed - the Ukrainian government on Wednesday said that 6,000 Russian troops have been killed. However, Russia said the number is 498.
The Commissioner of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, Filippo Grandi, said there has been an "exodus" from Ukraine to neighboring countries of over 1 million people. In other words, 2% of the Ukrainian population of 44 million.
This comes as an emergency session of the UN general assembly majorly voted in favor of condemning Russia's invasion of Ukraine, calling for the immediate withdrawal of Russian forces. Out of the 193 member states, 141 were in favor, 35 abstained and 5 voted against, being Russia, Belarus, Syria, North Korea and Eritrea.
Although the resolution which passed does not change by any legal means, it is an expression of opinion and is used to pressure Russia and Belarus, which has recently faced European sanctions.
Al Mayadeen's correspondent at the Ukrainian-Polish border has reported that several non-Ukrainian refugees were beaten, another instance of racial violence during the crisis.
Nigeria has recently slammed Ukraine for its racism against African citizens: the African country urged border officials in Ukraine and neighboring countries to treat its citizens equally amid mounting reports of racial discrimination against Africans fleeing the country after Russia's special military operation in Ukraine.
Read more: UNHCR urges safety of African refugees crossing Ukraine
Nigerians, Ghanaians, and other Africans, many of whom are students, have joined hundreds of thousands of people trying to escape Ukraine across borders into Poland and other nations.
"There have been unfortunate reports of Ukrainian police and security personnel refusing to allow Nigerians to board buses and trains heading towards the Ukraine-Poland border," expressed Ghanian Presidential Advisor Garba Shehu in a statement.
"In one video widely circulating on social media, a Nigerian mother with her young baby was filmed being physically forced to give up her seat to another person," he highlighted.
Over 40,000 Donbass refugees arrive in Russia
Last week, more than 40,000 refugees have arrived in the Rostov region, south of Russia, from the self-proclaimed Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics to the east of Ukraine.
"More than 40,000 people who were forced to leave Ukraine arrived in Russia. Now they are placed in the Rostov region in temporary accommodations," the acting head of the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations, Alexander Chupriyan, told reporters.
Chupriyan said that each temporary accommodation point has been supplied with hot food and communication has also been set up.
Some of the most intensive shelling by Kiev forces during the recent months took place on the morning of February 17, while the self-proclaimed Lugansk People's Republic (LPR) and Donetsk People's Republic (DPR) announced a general mobilization in the two republics.
In a phone call with Al Mayadeen’s correspondent in Crimea, Assistant to the President of the Donetsk Republic Victoria Talankina said that the head of the self-proclaimed Donetsk People's Republic, Denis Pushilin, has signed a decree on general mobilization in the Republic, urging nationals who are in reserve to come to the military commissariats.