Friday, 15 April 2022 15:28

Nearly five million people have fled Ukraine since Russia’s invasion| UN.

By Lehlohonolo Lehana.

More than five million people have fled Ukraine since the Russian invasion began on February 24, according to the latest UN statistics

UNHCR, the UN refugee agency, said 4,796,245 million Ukrainians had fled across the borders, while the UN's International Organization for Migration (IOM) says nearly 215,000 third-country nationals have also escaped to neighbouring countries.

The exodus is Europe's fastest-growing refugee crisis since World War II.

Friday's figures from the UNHCR were up 59,774 on those issued Thursday.

More than 2.7 million Ukrainian refugees – nearly six in 10 who have left since the war began – have fled to Poland. More than 725,000 reached Romania.

UNHCR figures show nearly 645,000 Ukrainians fled in February, with nearly 3.4 million doing so in March and more than 760,000 leaving so far this month.

Women and children account for 90 percent of those who have left Ukraine, with men aged 18 to 60 eligible for military call-up and unable to leave.

Meanwhile a total of 2,557 people were evacuated from Ukrainian cities through humanitarian corridors on Thursday, Deputy Prime Minister Iryna Vereshchuk said.

Of that, 289 people evacuated from the besieged southern port of Mariupol by their own transport, Vereshchuk said in an update over the Telegram messaging app.