Daily press briefing by the Office of the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General, 23 May 2022 – Ukraine, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Yemen – Ukraine
Quick humanitarian update for you on Ukraine: our colleagues on the ground tell us they remain concerned about the impact on civilians of the heavy fighting reported in the eastern oblasts of Luhanska, Donetska and Kharkivska, which are killing and injure people and damage or destroy homes, residential buildings and civil infrastructure. In the government-controlled part of Luhanska Oblast, local authorities reported that on 21 May a bridge leading to the administrative center of the oblast — Sievierodonetsk — was destroyed. This left the city partially encircled accessible by a single road. While some people managed to leave Sievierodonetsk over the weekend, local authorities believe thousands of civilians remain in the war-affected city and need urgent assistance. Our humanitarian colleagues also tell us that shelling and airstrikes have been reported in other parts of Ukraine, including in the north, center and south, causing civilian deaths and damaging civilian infrastructure. We remind parties to the conflict of their obligations under international humanitarian law to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure and to allow the rapid and unhindered passage of humanitarian assistance to civilians in need.
Democratic Republic of Congo
The head of the United Nations Organization Stabilization Mission in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (MONUSCO), Bintou Keita, has condemned yesterday’s targeted attacks in North Kivu province. These attacks were committed by the armed group M23 [23 March Movement] against members of the Congolese armed forces and UN peacekeepers. Following the attack, a joint operation was launched to liberate the area from M23, with the priority objective of protecting civilians. An assessment is underway to determine the consequences of these attacks, as well as the humanitarian needs. Ms. Keita deplored the new population displacements resulting from these clashes. She also called on the M23 to immediately cease all hostilities and disarm unconditionally.