Ukraine has recently begun the process of evacuating civilians from the recently liberated areas of southern Kherson and Mykolaiv. The efforts at evacuation come as concerns rise about damage to infrastructure in this part of Ukraine from the war, as well as about a general lack of heat that might put the civilian population at risk over the course of the coming winter. Apart from the general damage of the war, Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk has drawn attention to damage to infrastructure by Russian forces before their retreat after being increasingly pressured by Ukrainian forces.
The destruction they inflicted was not limited to physical infrastructure either. According to local authorities in the vicinity of Kherson, the retreating Russian forces stole fire trucks and ambulances, leaving civil services scrambling to find resources to take care of the local population, such as in dealing with the aftermath of continued Russian missile attacks.
Deputy Prime Minister Vereshchuk clarified that although this is only a voluntary evacuation at the moment, it was still the responsibility of Ukraine’s government to provide resources and assistance in the process. With this reasoning in mind, the Deputy Prime Minister has said that the government of Ukraine will be providing “transportation, accommodation, medical care” to those evacuated. This represents praiseworthy efforts by the Ukrainian government to take care of all their civilian population, given the continued missiles strikes against civilian infrastructure by Russian forces that has crippled half the energy system of the country. The United Nations has already warned the lack of access to electricity and water threaten a humanitarian disaster this winter.