Can Humanitarian Aid Alone Solve The Conflict In Ukraine?

By BBC at 11:35 AM 5/30/2020 (PDT)

The delegates of the United Nations Security Council have presented impassioned speeches and embarked in thoughtful discussion on the pertinent issue of the conflict in Ukraine. Calls for humanitarian aid were frequent, and the delegate of Vietnam made it clear that foreign aid would not be overlooked. But should humanitarian aid be the number one priority?

Humanitarian aid, while it could be beneficial for the welfare of Ukrainian civilians, would likely have negligible effect on de-escalating the proxy war being waged in Eastern Ukraine. Delegates like the United States reiterated the role of the UNSC and highlighted its authority and ability to diffuse tensions. The delegate of Estonia noted that “humanitarian aid is not enough, there must be military action as well.”

When the topic of peacekeepers was brought up in committee, there was discourse over the role they should serve. Some delegates were of the firm belief that peacekeepers should only be there to deliver aid and nothing else. The United States and Estonia thought that the peacekeepers should have more influence and play a bigger role, but there is the risk of the military presence exacerbating the conflict. Vietnam questioned the motives of placing the peacekeepers in Ukraine and reminded the committee that it could put civilians under more stress and inflame the tension between Russian and Ukrainian militants.

Russia firmly denied the existence of a humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, saying they have full control over the situation. The delegate of Russia also refuted accusations of supplying the separatists with funding and resources. The Dominican Republic brought up an interesting point, imploring the member states of the UNSC to cultivate dialogue between both parties and countries with opposing viewpoints. He made it known that these methods are crucial in order to successfully engineer a long-lasting peace.

Ultimately, it will be the sole responsibility of the delegates present to secure enduring peace for Ukraine and Russia, and humanitarian aid alone won’t be enough.

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