English Section

Polish first lady highlights plight of Ukrainian children abducted by Russia

08.03.2023 08:00
Poland’s first lady has described Ukrainian children as “the most innocent victims of the war” and said that the Russians "have abducted thousands of Ukrainian children, subjecting them to indoctrination.”
Polish First Lady Agata Kornhauser-Duda speaks at a conference on support for refugees from Ukraine, in Warsaw, on Tuesday, March 7, 2023.
Polish First Lady Agata Kornhauser-Duda speaks at a conference on support for refugees from Ukraine, in Warsaw, on Tuesday, March 7, 2023.KPRP/Grzegorz Jakubowski

Agata Kornhauser-Duda’s words came at a conference held by the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund (UNICEF) in Warsaw on Tuesday, Polish state news agency PAP reported.

The event summed up a year of joint efforts by Polish authorities and UNICEF to support Ukrainian children and families who had fled the Russian invasion to Poland, officials said. 

‘Children are the most innocent victims of this war’

Speaking as a special guest of the gathering, Poland’s first lady said that the war in Ukraine had been caused by “an unjustified, savage assault by Russia that has continued for over a year now.”  

Agata Kornhauser-Duda told the conference: “Wounds and death have been the fate of thousands of Ukrainian soldiers, but also of the civilian population, including children. It is they who are the most innocent victims of this war and it is they who suffer the most.”

She added: “Children are suffering because they have lost their loved ones, they are suffering because they have lost their homes and they are suffering because they have lost contact with their families.”   

The Polish first lady said that some of these children required special care, including orphans, children with disabilities and those suffering from multiple illnesses. 

‘Russian aggressors abducted thousands of Ukrainian children’

She stated: “Children are the most delicate and sensitive segment of society. They are the concern of every nation. They are its pride and joy, but above all they are its future and hope. The Russian aggressors are perfectly aware of this. Without hesitation, they are bombing schools, kindergartens, maternity hospitals and children’s hospitals.”

Kornhauser-Duda told the conference: “The Russian aggressors have abducted thousands of children deep into Russia, subjecting them to indoctrination and psychological manipulation.”

She added: “They are illegally putting the children up for adoption, not to mention the terrible things they do to women. There are no words sufficiently strong to express condemnation and outrage at these acts.” 

Polish support for Ukrainian children

The Polish first lady said that “amid all the evil that is currently taking place, it is all the more moving and hope-filling to see the mobilisation of countless individuals, central and local government agencies, organisations and associations.”

“We see how they are all coming together in a coalition of goodwill, to support the victims of this war,” she added.

Kornhauser-Duda thanked international organisations, including UNICEF, for supporting Poland as it helps refugees from Ukraine.

She went on to say: “I can still see the children who were evacuated from Ukrainian hospitals to Poland … We have managed to evacuate over 1,000 children who required immediate help and further treatment.”

The first lady also paid tribute to Polish volunteers who she said rushed to help refugees from Ukraine as soon as people began to arrive in Poland.  

According to a new report by UNICEF, over 900,000 children from Ukraine are receiving education in Poland, more than 450,000 refugees have been provided with psychological support, and over 370,000 women and children have received access to healthcare, the PAP news agency reported. 

Wednesday is day 378 of Russia’s war on Ukraine. 


Source: PAP, prezydent.pl