The Hungarian capital has been and will continue to do its part to help refugees fleeing the war in Ukraine, Mayor Gergely Karácsony said on Monday at the opening of the Budapest Helps information and community center.
The war in Ukraine has put everyone in a new situation, and everything must be done to provide as much help as possible to those fleeing the crisis, he added. He indicated that the capital will do its part to help refugees from the very beginning, providing accommodation, meals and information.
He continued that the challenge is to face the fact that, according to estimates by international organizations, “there are many more Ukrainian refugees in Budapest than we ‘officially see’ through the institutions.” This center will provide orientation for refugees here, he said, while thanking international partner organizations for their professional assistance.
"Budapest is a welcoming city, an island of peace and solidarity in a terrible world, and we want to show that the capital is there to help those in difficulties," Gergely Karácsony added.
Muriel Tschopp, Regional Operations Officer of the UNHCR, said that the center was created in cooperation between the UNHCR and the municipality of the capital. The war in Ukraine has been going on for 200 days and so far, 13 million people have had to flee their homes. Seven million of them are internally displaced and six million have left Ukraine, he said.
Many people need help, children need to go to school, adults need to find accommodation and work. This center will help them to do this, Muriel Tschopp said, adding that the center also wants to act as a bridge between Ukrainians and Hungarians. At the same time, he said he hoped that the center would not be needed for long and that everyone would be able to return to Ukraine after the war.
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