Refugee Crisis in Ukraine and the Anticipated Consequences
Since the inception of mankind there have been numerous wars, which have in one way or the other affected humans and their rights. Irrespective of the objective of war, the consequences remain the same i.e., negative repercussions on the lives of people. They are miserably affected as they become displaced on their own land, they are compelled to leave their abode and head either towards autocratic rule or some unknown country. It would be erroneous on our part if we say that the world collectively doesn’t work for the betterment and mitigation however, it doesn’t happen in a proper manner where people are really helped and rescued from the circle of compulsion and plight. Furthermore, the most prominent issue that arise during the wars with respect to the refugees is the condition of women and children, they become victims of trafficking, prostitution, sexual assaults, etc. The contemporary war that is being mentioned and talked about further is the Ukraine-Russo war which is responsible for changing the fate of the people and also perpetually the world politically, socially and economically.
According to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees, “refugees are people who have fled war, violence, conflict or persecution and have crossed an international border to find safety in another country”. They leave their countries reluctantly with some clothes, food and hope. According to the Global Trends’ Report of United Nations Refugee Agency the major refugee crisis in Ukraine and bordering countries has resulted in more than 7.3 million border crossings, and more than 7 million people have been internally displaced inside Ukraine in 2022. Moreover, the aforementioned figures are official figures however, the real figures are never revealed which makes it cogent that the situation is worse than it seems and needs urgent action. Further, even within this paradigm the most affected are women and children because these groups are already susceptible and hence become easy targets during the time of wars. Additionally, Europe being a volatile continent based on the fact that the two world wars had their orientation in Europe, it has a history of refugee crisis and for rivalries between countries which is started by a few but ultimately ends up affecting the whole populace of the involved nations.
Prior to initiation of the war between Ukraine and Russia, the former was known for its beautiful landscape, remarkable architecture, rich and diverse culture, etc, however unfortunately in the contemporary times it is popularly known for seeking help and asking for cooperation and contribution from different countries of the world. Countless number of people from the country have already either become refugees, asylum seekers or are internally displaced people(hereinafter referred to as IDP).
Also, despite the mass destruction that has already happened the patronizing nation doesn’t stop here but according to the United Nations Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs is incessantly attacking the energy infrastructure resulting in power cut, and destruction of water supply and heating supply in Ukraine which experiences severe winters with some cities hitting temperature below zero. These kinds of actions are direct war tactics for affecting the civilian population and taking the war to another level with aggression and stress from the civilians as well.
*Data as of October, 2022.
It is precisely evident that a lot of European countries have helped the refugees throughout the year and continue to do so however the pangs of leaving the homeland involuntarily during harsh and barbaric conditions cannot be mended and that void can never be filled. Furthermore, the world holistically has joined hands for helping the Ukrainians by providing humanitarian aids such as food supply, medications and human resources.
Fortunately, if this fatal war in the near future comes to an end it would not end on a peaceful note because like any other war it also experienced casualties, displacements, and increased number of human rights violations. The anticipated consequences that would be faced by the Ukrainian refugees are: –
- Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): –
PTSD is a psychological disorder which means failure to recover from any past terrifying or traumatic event. Here, working on the redevelopment of the countries post war economically, socially and politically the psychological factor should not be neglected because when the human resource of a country is mentally healthy and sound, only then can the war-torn area be properly developed. Furthermore, the return of refugees to their homeland differs from war to war and also the measures taken by the institutions and the countries across the world. Irrespective of whether the refugees get a chance to return back or they settle in the aid providing nations, it has been observed that increased number of people suffer from PTSD owing to compelled separation, death of loved ones, witnessing and experiencing criminal acts, maltreatment, etc. The leaders of the world and the observers of the war believe that the moment a war ends and the involved countries declare ceasefire everything becomes peaceful and harmonious but the truth is a harsh reality as it incessantly stays with the victims. They get the flashbacks of all the events that made their lives miserable and traumatic. Additionally, the destruction of the residential areas during the wars makes these people vulnerable to PTSD because before the war they had put in their resources, capital and time in building up their houses and after returning back they see a barren land with no mark of existence. Moreover, the refugees and asylum seekers who decide to stay back in other countries suffer because they have to fit in that changing environment with new culture and people besieging them and also starting the life from scratch. Life after war would look like an easy path but it’s not because the past was miserable which has traumatised the present. This consequence is a primary one which is seen in most of the people.
- Exponential Increase in Poverty: –
Post war the expenditure on defence and security drains a country’s wealth to an extreme extent which results in the fall of economy and makes people susceptible to poverty. During war the offices, schools, colleges, etc are closed which brings down the economy exponentially leaving the people with nothing but dependence on the government. Unfortunately, even the government cannot totally help the people because it is in itself dependent on other countries for aid and redevelopment. Precisely, the people who became victims of trafficking, prostitution, begging, etc unfortunately never return back to normalcy which leads to the continuation of the vicious circle of poverty which was perhaps started during the war due to the expenditure on war related resources.
- Less representation and contribution on the world forum: –
The world after experiencing many wars in the past has established mitigating and collective organisations which raise voice against the patronisers and put sanctions on the culprits however, a war recovering nation is not left in a condition to raise their voices on worldly matters because they already have a lot to deal with and they are also short on capital and resources. Interestingly, if a leader is courageous and brave to take the stance the people of the country do not let this happen because somewhere down, they are still afraid of another outbreak of war which would exacerbate the condition. Hence, the consequences of a war make the affected nations contribute comparatively less on the world forum and become less vocal on dominant matters.
- Education: –
This is a long term effect that lingers for years because a war paralyses the economy of a country, not only economic basis but also with regard to learning and knowledge because the resumption of schools and colleges cannot take place immediately because the main aim of people and holistically the whole nation is to primarily build a stable economy and for that even the school going children are expected to help the family redevelopment which results in neglecting the education and the learning of students.
- Feeling of nationalism: –
A war comes with unasked bloodshed, violence, crime, separation however, it definitely incorporates a feeling of oneness and nationalism in the people because they understand that nothing can cease the war but unity. The past wars like the French Revolution and the Indian freedom struggle also endorsed the concept of nationalism that led to the freedom and end of war. Similarly, the contemporary war would end only after the feeling of unity is inculcated amongst all and the repercussions would also include feeling of nationalism to avoid any further wars in the future.
Prohibition of wars sounds good but it is only possible in a utopian society which practically is impossible because of the human evolution, human rights and the awareness hence they can be mitigated and prevented to a certain extent but the present Ukraine-Russo war has taken quite an aggressive turn because the war proves to be an exceptional one because Russia is no longer the condescending nation because Ukraine is reacting with better forces and strategies to Russia’s actions however, despite all the courage shown the Ukrainian people are suffering as they millions of them have become refugees and asylum seekers because they can’t wait in a volatile nation. The lives of people are affected in every manner possible and they are left with none other than hope for recovery and betterment. Unfortunately, even after the war ends its consequences would linger resulting in hardships and struggle for at least next five to ten year. The aforementioned statement is not an assumption but based on the past events. The world can help the people by providing the humanitarian aid, asylum, education, financial aid and support to the leaders for redevelopment and inclusion in the world.
Article by –
Student Member, Centre for Human Rights, Gender and Social Inclusion, 2nd-year B.A.LL.B. (Hons), Faculty of Law, Jagran Lakecity University
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