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Food Aid Reaches Haiti, UN SG Condemns Attack On Slovakian Leader, Russian Strikes Drive Influx Of Evacuees In Ukraine

UN agencies are reaching Haitians in the besieged capital and other areas amid ongoing gang violence that continues to ravage the Caribbean nation, UN deputy spokesperson Farhan Haq told journalists on Wednesday.

Providing an update of the situation, he said the World Food Programme (WFP) distributed close to 10,000 hot meals on Monday and Tuesday to about 5,000 people displaced in the Port-au-Prince metropolitan area.

The UN agency started to transition from hot meals distributions to cash-based transfers for the displaced.

“So far, more than 37,000 people received cash. In the coming weeks, WFP is planning to provide cash assistance to over 95,000 displaced people,” the deputy spokesperson said.

Efforts expanding in Port-au-Prince

WFP continued food distributions in Cité Soleil, and more than 65,000 people have received food since last Friday, he said, adding that the agency’s goal is to reach 95,000 people by the end of this week.

As part of its school meal programmes, WFP has reached 195,000 school children throughout Haiti.

Following needs assessments in Gressier, a neighbourhood in Port-au-Prince, after violent incidents there, WFP is planning to begin hot meal distributions in this community on Thursday.

Meanwhile, the International Organization for Migration (IOM) distributed water to two sites hosting displaced people and provided health services through a mobile clinic in one site in Port-au-Prince, according to the agency.

Guterres condemns attack on Slovakia’s Prime Minister

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The UN Secretary-General “strongly condemns the shocking attack carried out today against the Prime Minister of Slovakia, Robert Fico”, his deputy spokesperson Mr. Haq said.

Earlier in the day, Prime Minister Rico was shot multiple times in Banikov Square Handlova, Slovakia, after a government meeting and was still undergoing surgery as of late Wednesday, according to media reports.

A suspect has been apprehended, according to news outlets.

“The Secretary-General’s thoughts are with the Prime Minister and his loved ones at this difficult moment,” he said.

Ukraine: Aid teams help those fleeing Russian strikes

As the war with Russia escalates, humanitarian organisations continued assisting people who fled to the Ukrainian city of Kharkiv in search of safety in ongoing evacuations from border and frontline communities in the region following multiple attacks over the past days, UN deputy spokesperson Farhan Haq told journalists on Wednesday.

On Tuesday alone, repeated strikes in the city of Kharkiv and across the region injured civilians, including children, as well as damaging a school and numerous homes, according to authorities and UN humanitarian partners, he said.

“We, along with our partners, have supported hundreds of people with transportation, accommodation, distribution of hot meals and ready-to-eat food packages,” Mr. Haq said.

“We also pre-registered people for cash assistance and provided mental health and psychological consultations.”

The UN Children's Fund (UNICEF) and partner agencies are also addressing the needs of youngsters to ensure that they can continue to learn despite the ongoing war.

‘Relentless attacks’ on the city and region

The UN Humanitarian Coordinator for Ukraine, Denise Brown, visited Kharkiv on Tuesday, condemning the unrelenting attacks on the city and the region.

“In the 21st century, people are having to flee for their lives, leave their homes behind, leave their jobs behind in the face of relentless attacks by the Russian Armed Forces,” she said, adding that the strikes “are repeated violations of international humanitarian law.

“People are coming here for assistance,” she said in a video on social media. “The response is being driven by local actors with the support of the international community and authorities.”

Ms. Brown has approved the release of $3.75 million from the Ukraine Humanitarian Fund to strengthen the ongoing response.

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