Red Cross Unable To Get Into Ukraine

Courtesy of IFRC

Courtesy of IFRC

By Amanda Horn, Staff Writer

Day 42 of the Russian- Ukrainian war: Russia is blocking humanitarian help from getting to innocent Ukrainian civilians.

The ICRC (International Committee of the Red Cross) couldn’t safely get into Mariupol to give humanitarian aid to Ukrainian civilians. The convoy left on April 1st and didn’t succeed in evacuating civilians, due to unsafe conditions. The convoy of buses and trucks were supposed to help citizens leave for safer parts of the country or to a neighboring country.

The International Committee of the Red Cross is a neutral organization which assists victims of armed conflicts in various counties with anything they need. Currently, many trucks full of supplies that will help Ukrainian civilians are unable to get into Mariupol, the biggest port city, because of Russian troops. On April 1st, a large convoy headed for Mariupol and could not get in. This war has only raged for a total of 42 days and there is already thousands of deaths and many more injured and displaced.

Russia was accused of delayed the evacuation buses for civilians. They also closed a route that was used to transport civilians out of Mariupol and neighboring cities. At the request of Emmanuel Macron, France’s president, and the German Chancellor, Olaf Scholz, Russia will reopen the route for safe transport for civilians and humanitarian aid workers.

Abandoned Russian tank in front of abandoned house.
Photo by Roman Pilipey.

“If and when the safe passage operation does happen, the ICRC’s role as a neutral intermediary would be to accompany the convoy out from Mariupol to another city in Ukraine,” the ICRC said. “Our presence will put a humanitarian marker on this planned movement of people, giving the convoy additional protection and reminding all sides of the civilian, humanitarian nature of the operation.” This restates the point that the Red Cross is the neutral force that only aims to help innocent civilians during times of war.

Humanitarian workers and organizations are vital for times of war. They supply people in need with necessities like water, food, blankets and first aid. Without these workers, many innocent civilians would die of starvation, dehydration or infection.

Hannah Nussbaum, a Wayne Hills sophomore, said, “these workers are so important because they are brave enough to go into dangerous areas to help the innocent. They deserve more praise and recognition because they are doing something amazing.”

These routes that allow Red Cross to travel to Mariupol are extremely important. This issue of closed roads needs to be resolved soon. Many innocent lives depend on it.