November 30, 2023

In an exclusive interview with DW, UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi praised Europe’s response in dealing with the arrival of hundreds of thousands of refugees fleeing from the war in Ukraine.

“The unity in Europe in dealing with this matter has greatly helped making this welcome more sustainable,” said Grandi, who was in Berlin to meet with German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock.

Grandi however added that helping those fleeing the war in Ukraine, especially in the long term, is also a burden.

“We must do whatever i​s possible to try and avoid burdening communities and burdening the states with this big responsibility for a long period of time,” said Grandi, responding to reports that German cities are being pushed to their limits when it comes to providing sustained assistance to new arrivals.

The head of the UNHCR also told DW that the big effort to welcome Ukrainian refugees in Europe should not deprive other countries of humanitarian resources.

Grandi welcomed an “exceptional” €94 million contribution from Germany to help refugees from Syria and the Horn of Africa.


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