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Lack of jobs, money for rent, add to woes in conflict-affected eastern Ukraine, says UN agency

Lack of jobs, money for rent, add to woes in conflict-affected eastern Ukraine, says UN agency

India Blooms News Service | | 30 Nov 2017, 12:16 am

New York, Nov 30(Just Earth News): As temperatures plummet across eastern Ukraine, many – including the elderly – who fled their homes following hostilities are forced to return to their original place of residence due to lack of jobs and money to pay rent in the places they were sheltering, the United Nations migration agency has reported.

According to a survey conducted by the UN International Organization for Migration (IOM), about 70 per cent of the returnees said that they were going back to their homes because they do not have to pay rent there as have to elsewhere.

“Over half of the internally displaced persons (IDPs) returning are over the age of 60, and most are pensioners,” said IOM in a news release Tuesday, announcing the findings.

“This heightens their vulnerability as the pension is linked to their [displaced] status and residence in the government-controlled area.”

Almost two-thirds of those surveyed also reported that their income only covers their food needs. The average monthly income per IDP-household member (about $87) in the non-government-controlled areas is well below the subsistence level (about $113) calculated by the Ministry of Social Policy.

Overall, 16 per cent of respondents surveyed in the latest round, in September, stated they returned to their original place of residence, a three per cent increase on the previous round.

Further complicating the matters is the difficulty for relief actors to reach many parts of the affected region.

“Access to deliver humanitarian aid […] remains of paramount importance to ensure that support is provided to the most vulnerable individuals throughout eastern Ukraine,” said Thomas Lothar Weiss, the head of IOM operations in Ukraine, on a visit the eastern region last week.

“We intend to keep up [the assistance] during the difficult winter months, especially to vulnerable populations near the contact line between the Government and non-government-controlled areas,” he added.

Since the outbreak of conflict in 2015, IOM has provided assistance to nearly 200,000 internally displaced persons and conflict-affected people.

The UN agency has also been conducting surveys on the situation of IDPs in Ukraine on a regular basis since March 2016. In the latest round, some 1,025 IDPs were interviewed in person and more than four thousand were interviewed by phone across the country.

Photo: WFP/Abeer Etefa

Source: www.justearthnews.com


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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again; UNESCO regrets #HagiaSophia, #Turkey, #Istanbul, #HagiaSophiaMosqueAgain Istanbul/IBNS: Hagia Sophia, Turkey's iconic monument, a UNESCO World Heritage and one of the central attractions of its capital Istanbul, is no longer a museum. It has been turned back as a mosque though some 1500 years ago it was built as an Orthodox Christian cathedral. Hagia Sophia was converted into a mosque during the Ottoman time in 1453 while under Ataturk it was turned into a museum in 1935. The decision comes amid a growing rise of the Islamists in Turkey who had been demanding that it be restored as a mosque though Opposition leaders with secular credentials had been against the move. A top court in Turkey ruled that turning it into a museum in 1935 by modern Turkey's secular architect Mustafa Kemal Ataturk was illegal, paving the way for present Turkey president Recep Tayyip Erdogan to declare it as a mosque again and to open it for Muslim prayers. Erdogan made the announcement an hour after the court ruled the conversion to museum in 1935 as illegal and scrapped its status. "May it be beneficial," posted Erdogan on Twitter, sharing an official document on the change with his signature. UNESCO regrets In an immediate reaction, UNESCO said it "deeply regrets" the decision. UNESCO said it was "regrettable that the Turkish decision was not the subject of dialog nor notification beforehand". "UNESCO calls on the Turkish authorities to open a dialog without delay in order to avoid a step back from the universal value of this exceptional heritage whose preservation will be reviewed by the World Heritage Committee in its next session," the United Nation's cultural body said in a statement. Istanbul icon of beauty and wonderment According to Turkey's official tourism website, Hagia Sophia is a remarkable achievement in the history of architecture. and a living proof of mankind's revolt against the laws of physics and it calls it a monument whose importance transcends borders. It is one of UNESCO's World Cultural Heritage sites attracting millions of visitors across the world with its majestic grandeur

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Erdogan's Turkey turns Hagia Sophia into a mosque again 11 Jul 2020, 01:37 pm