Ukraine’s allies will meet in Paris on Tuesday to provide emergency aid to help the country weather freezing winter temperatures as Russian forces target civilian infrastructure across the country.
About 70 countries and institutions will discuss what can be offered by March to maintain water, food, energy, health and transport.
A second meeting between France, Ukraine and some 500 companies will see what can be invested and done in the short and long term.
Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy addressed world leaders at a G7 summit on Monday, stressing that his country will need more ammunition, energy supplies as well as diplomacy.
In a virtual meeting with heads of state, such as British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak, German Chancellor Olaf Scholz and US President Joe Biden, Zelenskyy urged members to stress the importance of gas supplies .
“I urge you to increase assistance to Ukraine on the gas issue. Terrorism against our power plants has caused us to use more gas than expected. And that is why we need additional support this winter. We are talking about a volume of about two billion cubic meters of gas, something that needs to be purchased,” Zelenskyy said.
His comments on gas supplies follow renewed Russian bombardment of Ukraine’s energy infrastructure over the weekend. Reports suggest that Russian forces used Iranian-made drones to hit two energy facilities in Odessa leaving 1.5 million people without electricity.
Scholz, who is the current G7 president, spoke shortly after the meeting to say the leaders had agreed on protocols and mechanisms to coordinate financial support for Ukraine, but did not did not underestimate the challenges ahead.
“The reconstruction of Ukraine will be a task for humanity, perhaps comparable to the Marshall Plan after World War II,” he said.
Meanwhile, in Paris, members of the National Assembly hosted a dinner for Ukrainian Prime Minister Denys Shmyhal on Monday, ahead of Tuesday’s donors’ conference for the visitor’s beleaguered country. Shmyhal was greeted by his French counterpart Elisabeth Borne upon his arrival.
Organized by the French government and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the objective of the conference is to help Ukraine get through the harsh winter ahead and to finance its post-war reconstruction.
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