This evening, a cargo plane with around 25 tonnes of relief supplies will fly to Warsaw, delivering medicines and tents for families equipped with mattresses, sleeping bags, woollen blankets, heaters, cooking utensils and water canisters. This will be followed by a six-truck convoy tomorrow delivering medical material provided by the Armed Forces Pharmacy of the Federal Department of Defence, Civil Protection and Sport (DDPS). The supplies include defibrillators, respirators, hygiene masks, surgical gowns and medical protective clothing for the Ukrainian population both in Ukraine and its neighbouring countries.
"The Ukrainian population is suffering. It is our duty to help them in the here and now, in keeping with Switzerland's humanitarian tradition," said President of the Confederation Ignazio Cassis, who is also the head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA). Swiss Humanitarian Aid, which is part of the FDFA, is setting up an upstream hub in Poland for Switzerland's aid supplies. This should facilitate further aid deliveries to Ukraine and the border area in Poland, and potentially other neighbouring countries as well. Consignments are accompanied by staff of the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit (SHA). A team of SHA experts flew to Warsaw yesterday to plan how the current supplies will be used in the field, and to start up initial emergency measures.
Swiss funding for humanitarian organisations
Switzerland has already provided the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Ukraine with half a million Swiss francs and the UN with a quarter of a million. It also made an immediate contribution of half a million Swiss francs to the UN emergency relief fund for Ukraine. Further funding for international organisations such as UN agencies and the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement are being considered in view of the international appeals for assistance issued earlier this week. Switzerland will also support local organisations that are particularly active on the ground and already providing humanitarian aid. Financial resources from the existing CHF 8 million budget have been earmarked for the first phase of Switzerland's humanitarian aid support package.
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