EU making preparations for a million war refugees
More than a million refugees could attempt to enter the EU should Russia invade Ukraine, a senior official in Brussels has predicted, revealing that the bloc has already begun to make preparations for what could be a humanitarian crisis.
Speaking to German daily Die Welt, EU Commission Vice President Margaritis Schinas also revealed that there are around 20,000 EU citizens currently living in Ukraine, many of whom would need assistance if they were displaced by the conflict.
“An escalation of the conflict in Ukraine would pose a major threat to European security with global repercussions,” Schinas said on Friday.
However, while the EU is prepared to “mobilize significant humanitarian aid and help with civil protection,” Schinas predicted serious knock-on effects in the event of a Russian offensive.
“It is estimated that between 20,000 and more than a million refugees could come,” Schinas asserted, highlighting just how much pressure EU states would be placed under in the event of a mass evacuation of Ukraine.
The Eurocrat also voiced concerns regarding energy supplies and cyber security, suggesting that the EU’s “emergency plans” to tackle the invasion aftermath could put significant strain on the continent’s resources and infrastructure. A task force has already been set up, he noted.
Schinas compared the looming potential refugee crisis to the situation in Belarus, when the EU accused Minsk of instrumentalizing migrants as a means of deliberately exerting moral pressure on decision makers in Brussels.