Check against delivery.
I would like, at the outset, to thank Mr. Martin Griffiths, the Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, and Ms. Catherine Russell, Executive Director of UNICEF, for their briefings.
As the speakers ahead of me have noted, the humanitarian situation in Ukraine has reached catastrophic levels. Today, more than 40 million Ukrainians, including 7.5 million children, face insecurity, damaged and destroyed infrastructure, and a severe lack of basic services. As mentioned, there are nearly 1.7 million Ukrainians who are either internally displaced or refugees, while the number of causalities continues to rise.
Considering these grim facts, we must, as an international community, try to urgently alleviate the humanitarian suffering of Ukrainians as we intensify our efforts to end the fighting and find a permanent solution to the current crisis.
In this regard, I would like to focus on the following issues:
First, we call on all parties to respect their obligations under international humanitarian law. This includes ensuring foremost that civilians and civilian objects, including schools and hospitals, are not the target of attacks. We further note that the destruction of Ukrainian infrastructure is severely affecting humanitarian conditions—with access to urgent services such as water, health services, and food supplies is increasingly difficult.
Humanitarian aid must reach those in need without precondition on any ceasefire agreements. The safety of humanitarian personnel must be also ensured.
We stress the need to stop hostilities to allow affected civilians to leave cities exposed to violence, including Mariupol, Kharkiv, and Sumy. We deeply regret the collapse of the humanitarian corridors that have been agreed and recognize that humanitarian corridors are temporary and imperfect solutions. They are not an alternative to respect for international humanitarian law. However, properly established humanitarian corridors can be an immediate measure as we explore every way that can contribute to the protection of civilians.
Second, there is an urgent need for realistic initiatives that can contribute to building confidence between the conflicting parties and to ensuring respect for international humanitarian law. For example, the remains of the dead should be identified and respected and, whenever possible, their return should be arranged. Protected persons, including wounded, sick, and captured soldiers, are due protection by the parties under international humanitarian law.
Third, we call on the international community to intensify efforts to urgently provide humanitarian support to Ukraine. This includes contributing to the UN Humanitarian Flash Appeal and the Ukraine Regional Refugee Response Plan, as well as other initiatives. In this regard, we commend the role of the United Nations Secretariat in supporting and coordinating the humanitarian response, which should focus particularly on women and children. We also commend the efforts made by neighboring countries in receiving fleeing Ukrainians. The UAE will provide five million US dollars to alleviate the suffering of Ukrainians. Additionally, we sent 30 metric tons of emergency medical and relief aid to Ukraine just today.
In conclusion, we stress that finding a solution to the crisis and avoiding further damage and casualties requires restraint and an immediate ceasefire throughout Ukraine. It also requires activating diplomatic channels to find a sustainable solution that ends the conflict. We welcome the continued high-level engagement of the international community with each of the parties. We believe such efforts will contribute to a diplomatic solution in a manner that serves the goal of maintaining regional and international peace and security and protects the dignity and needs of millions of civilians.