INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS

THE EFFECT OF THE RUSSIAN- UKRAINE WAR ON REFUGEEISM

Format: MS WORD |  Chapter: 1-5 |  Pages: 65-80

CHAPTER ONE

INTRODUCTION

1.1 Background of the study

Following weeks of heightened tensions and rising fighting in eastern Ukraine, Russian forces invaded the nation on February 24th, according to Poroshenko (2022). Major strikes have been reported throughout Ukraine, including in the capital, Kyiv, causing widespread terror and panic, forcing many people to seek cover in shelters and subways as air raid sirens blared in the streets of Poroshenko’s ,(2022). Military clashes are ongoing in other major cities across Ukraine, including Chernihiv (north), Kharkiv (north-east), Kherson (south), Mariupol (south-east), Mykolaiv (south), Odessa (south-west), Sumy (north), and other major cities in the northern, eastern, and southern parts of the country, while pre-existing hostilities in Donetska and Luhan ( Poroshenko’s, 2022). As hostilities rose, Ukraine’s government proclaimed an initial 30-day State of Emergency on February 23, with the exception of Donetska and Luhanska oblasts, which have had a special security regime in place since 2014. The government announced martial rule and enforced a nocturnal curfew in Kyiv Poroshenko the next day, on February 24 (Poroshenko’s ,2022). The curfew is in effect from 5:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. at the moment. On February 28, 2022, a curfew was imposed in Kyiv until 8:00 a.m Poroshenko (2022). As of February 24, Ukraine’s airspace remains restricted, and the European Union Aviation Safety Agency has advised pilots to use extreme care in airspace within 185 kilometers of the Belarus-Ukraine and Russia-Ukraine borders. NATO has indicated that a ‘no-fly zone’ would not be established over Ukraine. The long-running war in eastern Ukraine has intensified, and new hotspots have formed throughout Ukraine outside the typical conflict hotspot of the Donbas area Poroshenko (2022). Hundreds of houses, water and sanitation infrastructure, schools, and health facilities have been damaged as a result of the continuous fighting, which has resulted in an increasing number of civilian fatalities, disrupted livelihoods, and damaged key civilian infrastructure Forbes,(2022). Between 4:00 a.m. on February 24 and 5:00 p.m. on February 26, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) reports at least 240 civilian casualties, including 64 deaths and 176 injuries, across the country as a result of aerial and ground attacks, with nearly 85% of those killed and injured in Government-controlled areas (RCI,2022). After the first day of Russian military operation, President Zelenskyy reported that more than 130 military members had been killed and more than 310 others had been wounded (Forbes,2022). Hundreds of thousands of people have been left without power or water as a result of significant infrastructure damage, and towns have been cut off from markets for food and other essential goods due to bridge and road damage caused by shelling. Emergency medical services, crucial medications, health supplies and equipment, clean drinking and hygiene water, and housing and protection for people displaced from their homes are among the most immediate humanitarian needs (RCI,2022). People began to flee the capital, which is home to nearly 3 million people, and other conflict-affected areas of Ukraine, internally displacing more than 160,000 people and forcing more than 116,000 to cross borders into neighboring European countries, including Poland (where border authorities say 100,000 people have arrived in recent days), Moldova, and Romania (France 24,2022).  While the exact magnitude and breadth of the displacement will likely only become clear in the following days and weeks, Ukrainian officials believe that up to 5 million people might evacuate the nation, generating a refugee crisis that would put neighboring countries’ response capabilities to the test (France 24,2022). The latest uptick in violence comes as Ukraine contends with an Omicron-driven surge in COVID-19, which saw active cases rise by 555 percent between 15 January and 25 February, a number that may be considerably higher owing to a lack of testing (RCI,2022). As more people are evacuated, the increased risk of COVID-19 infection, along with a rise in the number of wounded persons requiring emergency medical care, would put extra strain on the country’s already overburdened health system (RCI,2022). The present scenario is worsening an already severe humanitarian crisis in the Donbas area while also creating new multi-sectoral requirements across the nation. Even before the present worsening, the protracted fighting in Ukraine had resulted in more than 3,000 fatalities and 7,000 injuries6, as well as the damage or destruction of about 55,000 dwellings (Schengen  Visa,2022). As a consequence of the deepening of armed conflict, an estimated 2.9 million people need humanitarian aid, a number that is anticipated to climb exponentially. The Russian invasion of Ukraine has caused one of Europe’s greatest and quickest refugee flows since World War II ended [Forbes,2022). . By the 2nd of March, barely seven days into the battle, an estimated 874,000 people had fled to neighboring countries. According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), up to four million people might evacuate the nation in the following weeks[Forbes,2022)]. The European Union (EU) estimates that there may be as many as seven million refugees by 2022[France,2022)]. Regardless of whatever figure is true, it is now crystal obvious that Europe is facing an unparalleled refugee crisis. While the EU describes this as the “biggest humanitarian disaster” Europe has seen in “many, many years,”[Schengen Visa, 2022] it is crucial to recall that the region had another major humanitarian crisis not long ago, the 2015 refugee “crisis” sparked by the Syrian war. However, Europe’s radically contrasting reactions to these two crises to far serve as a warning lesson for anyone seeking for a more compassionate and generous Europe (Schengen Visa, 2022). The distinctions also explain why certain of those leaving Ukraine, particularly African, Asian, and Middle Eastern people, do not get the same lavish treatment as Ukrainian residents. Ukraine’s neighbors have reacted with an outpouring of public and political support for the refugees as of the time of writing this report (RCI,2022). Political leaders have said publicly that Ukrainian migrants are welcome, and nations have been ready to accept refugees at their borders with teams of volunteers distributing food, drink, clothes, and medications [RCI,2022].  Slovakia [Schengen Visa, 2022] and Poland [RCI, 2022] have announced that refugees fleeing Ukraine’s war will be allowed to enter their countries even if they do not have passports or other valid travel documents; other EU countries, such as Ireland, have announced that visa requirements for people arriving from Ukraine will be lifted immediately (Schengen Visa,2022). Ukrainian migrants are being given with free public transportation and phone connectivity across Europe[Government of Ireland, 2022]. The EU is considering reactivating the Temporary Protection Directive, which was put in place in the 1990s to deal with large-scale refugee migrations during the Balkan crisis[Jacopo,2022]. Refugees from Ukraine would be allowed up to three years of temporary protection in EU nations without having to apply for asylum, with rights to a residence permit and access to education, housing, and the labor market under this program. The EU also wants to make it easier for refugees leaving Ukraine to cross borders and enter the EU[Jacopo,2022]. Many Ukrainian refugees have been moving on from neighboring nations to visit relatives and friends in other EU countries, where they may travel visa-free for 90 days [Monika,2022]. The public and politicians throughout Europe are rallying to demonstrate sympathy and support for refugees leaving Ukraine.

1.2 Statement of the problem

Since 2014, when Russian military gained control of Crimea, which it then effectively annexed after a dubious local vote, there has been conflict in Ukraine (Monika,2022). Separatists supported by Russia gained control of two areas in eastern Ukraine’s Donetsk and Luhansk regions and declared independence, creating the de facto Donetsk and Luhansk People’s Republics (Monika,2022). Conflict has erupted in the area between rebels supported by Russia and Ukrainian armed troops. Students and refugees from Africa, the Middle East, and Asia are increasingly reporting discriminatory treatment, obstruction, and violence while attempting to exit Ukraine (Schengen Visa,2022). Many people reported being barred from boarding trains and buses in Ukrainian cities because Ukrainian citizens were given precedence; others reported being violently dragged aside and halted by Ukrainian border guards while attempting to enter into neighboring countries [Stephanie,2022]. There have also been reports of Polish authorities detaining African students and refusing them entry into Poland, despite the fact that the Polish Ambassador to the United Nations told the United Nations General Assembly on February 28 that claims of racial or religious discrimination at Poland’s border were “a complete lie and a terrible insult to the country (Stephanie,2022).” “Nationals of all nations who have been victims of Russian aggression or whose lives are in danger may seek refuge in my country,” he said. As a result, it is necessary to investigate the impact of the Russian-Ukraine conflict on refugeeism.

1.3 Objective of the study

The general objective of the study is the effect of the Russian-Ukraine war on refugeeism. The specific objective are as follows

i. To examine the causes of the Russian- Ukraine war.

ii. To investigate the impact of the Russian- Ukraine war on the influx of refugee to other European countries.

iii. To find out the challenges the refugees of the Russian -Ukrainian war will face in the quest to get shelter and protect their lives.

1.4 Research Questions

The following questions have been prepared for the study

i. What are the causes of the Russian- Ukraine war?

ii. What are the impact of the Russian- Ukraine war on the influx of refugee to other European countries?

iii. What are the challenges the refugees of the Russian -Ukrainian war will face in the quest to get shelter and protect their lives?

1.5 Significance of the study

This study examines the effect of the Russian-Ukraine war on refugeeism, the study will be significant to the European union as it will expose them to how best to handle the refugee situation in the region.

The study will also be significant to the academic community as it will contribute to the existing literature on the impact of war on refugeeism.

1.6 Scope of the study

The study examine the causes of the Russian- Ukraine war. The study will also investigate the impact of the Russian- Ukraine war on the influx of refugee to other European countries. Lastly, the study will find out the challenges the refugees of the Russian -Ukrainian war will face in the quest to get shelter and protect their lives.

1.7 Research Methodology

Research methodology deals with the different ways or methods the researcher applied in order to carry out the research as well as the instrument used for gathering the data. There are several research methodologies appropriate for answering the research questions. The type of research methodology used in this research to gather data and relevant information is the historical research and the study will adopt descriptive method of data collection. This will involve the collection of materials from secondary sources, such as books, journal articles, magazines, internet sources, international and national conference proceedings, published and unpublished articles.

1.8 Organization of the study

The study consisted of five chapters. Chapter one comprised background of the study  and a general introduction to the work. It included statement of problem of the study, highlighted the objectives of the study, the scope within which the research was conducted is also highlighted. An outline of how the work is organized is also detailed in the chapter one. The chapter two of the study reviewed the factors responsible for the Russian – Ukraine war. Chapter three discussed the impact of the Russian-Ukraine war on European trade. Chapter four  the global prospect of the Russian – Ukraine war and the chapter five is a summary of the major findings with recommendations and conclusion to the study.

REFERENCES

Forbes,(2022) “Looming Ukrainian Refugee Crisis Presents Challenge Not Seen Since World War II,” Andy J. Semotiuk, 28 February 2022, https://www.forbes.com/sites/andyjsemotiuk/2022/02/28/looming-ukrainian-refugee-crisis-presents-challenge-not-seen-since-world-war-ii/.

France 24 (2022), “Russian invasion risks displacing more than 7 million Ukrainians, says EU crisis commissioner,” 27 February 2022, https://www.france24.com/en/europe/20220227-europe-must-prepare-for-millions-of-ukrainian-refugees-eu-commissioner-says.

 Government of Ireland, (2022) Department of Justice, “Minister McEntee Announces Immediate Lifting of Visa Requirements Between Ukraine and Ireland,” 25 February 2022, https://www.gov.ie/en/press-release/00aef-minister-mcentee-announces-immediate-lifting-of-visa-requirements-between-ukraine-and-ireland/.

Jacopo Barigazzi and Suzanne Lynch(2022), “EU debates granting temporary protection to refugees from Ukraine,” Politico, 27 February 2022, https://www.politico.eu/article/ukraine-refugees-european-union-war-russia-temporary-protection-debate/

Monika Pronczuk,(2022) “The European Union will ask states to grant asylum to Ukrainian refugees for up to 3 years,” The

New York Times, 27 February 2022, https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/27/world/europe/european-union-ukrainian-refugees-asylum.html.

Poroshenko, P. (2022), “Presidential Debate: “The Conflict over Ukraine and European Security”.Munich Security Conference, available at: https://www.securityconference.de/en/medialibrary/video/presidential-debate-the-conflict-over-ukraine-andeuropean.

Radio Canada International,(2022) “Poland will help all Ukrainians fleeing war with Russia: officials,” 25 February 2022, https://ici.radio-canada.ca/rci/en/news/1864902/poland-will-help-all-ukrainians-fleeing-war-with-russia-officials.

Schengen Visa Info News, “Slovakia Permits Entry for Ukrainians Fleeing the War Without Valid Travel Documents,”26 February 2022, https://www.schengenvisainfo.com/news/slovakia-permits-entry-for-ukrainians-fleeing-the-war-without-valid-travel-documents/.