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EUROPE: Moldova seeks US support as refugee numbers surge

EARLIER today Moldovan Prime Minister Natalia Gavrilita requested the US to send additional humanitarian aid as the number of refugees fleeing Ukraine’s conflict to the small European country surpassed 120,000.

She said her country of 2.6 million people, one of Europe’s poorest, was straining under the weight of those fleeing Russia’s invasion of neighboring Ukraine at the start of a meeting with visiting US Secretary of State Antony Blinken.

“As of this morning, we had more than 230,000 people who have crossed the border from Ukraine, and 120,000 stayed in Moldova. 96,000 of them are Ukrainian citizens. For a small country like Moldova, proportionately, this is a very large number,” she told Blinken.

“Everybody has come together to host, to provide shelter, to provide food, to provide assistance to those who are fleeing war,” she said.

“But we will need assistance to deal with this influx, and we need this quickly,” she added.

Blinken said Moldova “can count on us across the board” for support as he made his third tour in Europe to build up unity against the Russian invasion.

“We admire the generosity, the hospitality, the willingness to be such good friends to people who are in distress. And indeed we want to do everything we can to help you deal with the burden this is imposing.”

In Poland on Saturday Blinken said the White House was seeking $2.75 billion in funds for humanitarian support related to the war, which has already driven more than one million people from Ukraine.

On Saturday in Poland, Blinken claimed the White House was asking $2.75 billion in humanitarian help for the crisis in Ukraine, which has already displaced over one million people.

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Naija Times