The Russian war of aggression against Ukraine has brought immeasurable suffering to millions of people. Russia is specifically targeting civilian infrastructure, such as the systems that supply electricity and heat, and is thereby depriving people of the basic necessities of life. This is why the German Government is giving top priority to helping to provide Ukrainians with precisely what they need. Consequently, Germany is supporting Ukraine and its neighbouring countries through humanitarian assistance, as well as helping meet the needs of internally displaced persons and refugees.
Since the outbreak of the war, the German Government has made available more than 12.5 billion euro in bilateral support; this aid includes a substantial winter assistance programme, helping those who have fled Ukraine, and assisting efforts to investigate war crimes.
Military support for Ukraine
Ukraine must be able to defend itself against Russian aggression. Germany is therefore supporting Ukraine by supplying arms and equipment from its Bundeswehr stockpiles, as well as from defence industry deliveries that are paid for with funds from Germany’s Enable & Enhance Initiative. When providing assistance, the German Government tailors its aid to the needs of Ukraine and continuously looks for other areas, e.g. air defence, in which it can give additional support.
Germany is also the largest contributor to the refinancing fund of the European Peace Facility (EPF), which so far has enabled the provision of 3.1 billion euro from across Europe; these funds are to be made available between 2022 and 2026, to support the delivery of military equipment from EU member states to the Ukrainian armed forces.
For a current overview of military support click here.
Unprecedented sanctions package
For as long as Russia continues to brutally attack Ukraine, there must be consequences. Germany and its European partners have responded by imposing a massive and unprecedented package of sanctions: cutting Russia off from international financial markets, substantial import and export bans, especially in the spheres of advanced technology, industry and energy, a price cap for Russian oil, wide-ranging import bans, e.g. on Russian coal, petroleum, iron and steel products, as well as gold, severe measures targeting Russia’s aviation sector, and sanctions targeting Russia’s President Putin, Foreign Minister Lavrov and the network of oligarchs that supports them.
For more on the sanctions that are currently in effect click here.
Documenting war crimes
Russia’s war against Ukraine has involved severe violations of international humanitarian law and massive human rights abuses, such as the killing and torture of Ukrainian civilians. Germany and its partners have presented this situation for further examination to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court (ICC), who in turn immediately initiated an investigation. Germany is supporting these efforts in Ukraine, with both funding and by seconding experts. We are also supporting the investigations being conducted by Ukrainian authorities, for example through the provision of advisory services and forensic equipment. Ukraine can count on Germany’s support for its efforts to document and investigate war crimes in the country – we owe this to the victims.
Together with Ukraine, we must also make plans for the future. That is why, together with Ukraine and our partners in the EU and the G7, we are now beginning to plan how Ukraine can rebuild. Although reconstruction will require a significant international effort, it at the same time presents a great opportunity to modernise Ukraine’s state and economy, bring about ecological transformation and, not least, to implement national reforms and make progress towards EU accession.
Tremendous willingness to help
Many people in Germany have great sympathy for the fate of people in Ukraine, and the tremendous willingness to help extends to civil society. The large number of donated items has resulted in aid organisations needing to do a significant amount of coordination work. The German Government therefore supports the appeal to refrain from donations in kind and whenever possible to donate money to established aid organisations instead. Donations can be made via Aktion Deutschland Hilft and the Disaster Relief Alliance. By adding the memo “Nothilfe Ukraine” (emergency aid for Ukraine) to bank transfers, the money will be spent on relief measures for people in Ukraine.
Cities and municipalities can provide information on what refugees need in their temporary shelters and how one can take people in who have fled the fighting.