Ambassador Sheba Crocker’s Remarks
As delivered at the UN Joint Launch of the Ukraine Humanitarian Response Plan (HRP) and the Regional Refugee Response Plan (RRP) for Ukraine
Good morning and thank you so much. Thank you Under Secretaries General and High Commissioner and to the entire panel and OCHA and UNHCR for hosting this launch event today, to help to renew our focus on the humanitarian catastrophe caused by Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine.
As we approach the one-year anniversary of Russia’s unjustified invasion, humanitarian needs and access challenges remain acute across Ukraine.
The statistics are sobering—as we’ve heard today from the panel.
But figures alone of course cannot capture what it means to be displaced from your home, to be without enough food, heat in the winter, access to health services, or the ability to pursue a livelihood. They do though offer clear and stark perspective on the scale of human suffering brought by the war.
The United States remains committed to supporting the people of Ukraine, inside Ukraine and accross the region as we have done since last February, with $1.9 billion in humanitarian assistance so far.
We urge our fellow donors to continue to fund these critical 2023 appeals.
And we’d like to extend our deep gratitude to Ukraine’s neighbors and their citizens who have welcomed Ukrainian refugees into their homes and communities.
In addition to funding, humanitarian access is a critical challenge as many have already spoken of. And we are gravely concerned that Russian forces continue to prevent humanitarians from accessing populations in dire need.
We must escalate our humanitarian diplomacy to advance access and ensure aid can reach all those in need in Ukraine.
We are heartened that leadership from across the humanitarian community came together on Monday in Brussels at the Senior Officials Meeting on Ukraine to collectively recognize this imperative.
Further, we must support and strengthen local humanitarian action.
Building on what we’ve already done to fund and train national and local organizations, I’m pleased to share that this year we are providing direct funding to local organizations.
As we mark this somber and fateful one-year milestone, much remains to be done to address critical needs stemming from the Ukraine crisis. And we will work together with all of you to meet those challenges.