Ukraine's Displaced Children: 70,000 Have Already Crossed into Austria

People ♦ Published: March 25, 2022; 19:57 ♦ (Vindobona)

The war in Ukraine is causing inhuman suffering and despair - especially among children. More than half of the Ukrainian children are considered displaced and many of them also found their way to Austria. If you want to learn more details about the current challenges, please read on.

Many desperate mothers with their children seek help abroad. / Picture: © Wikimedia Commons / Chabad Lubavitch, CC BY 2.0

Since the Russian attack on Ukraine, millions of people have fled. Most of them are internally displaced persons in their own country. However, many, including a large number of children, have also managed to flee abroad.

The UN Childrens Fund estimates that 4.3 million children are currently displaced - more than half of the children living in Ukraine. 1.8 million of them have fled the country and are currently abroad with (or without) family members.

Austria is also currently trying to accommodate all those seeking help. Since the outbreak of the war, 27,000 displaced persons have already been registered in Austria - by far not all of them.

According to refugee coordinator Michael Takacs, 203,000 refugees have already arrived in Austria, including 70,000 children and young people under the age of 18, ORF reported.

The comparatively low number of registrations is explained by the fact that about 80%, travel directly on and do not stay long in Austria.

The many women and children have good reasons to seek safety abroad. The Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OCHCR) reports that 78 children have already been killed and 105 injured in fightings in Ukraine.

"This is a grim milestone that could have lasting consequences for generations to come," Catherine Russell, Executive Director of UNICEF warned.

But the journey, too, poses many dangers. The refugees, 90% of whom are women and children, run the risk of being exploited by traffickers and criminal organizations.

"Evidence from conflicts shows that criminals profit from the chaos and desperation of war. Crisis increases vulnerabilities as well as opportunities to exploit people in need, especially internally displaced people and refugees," says UNODC Executive Director Ghada Waly.

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