Kyiv, 8 February 2019 – Today the Governments of Denmark, Sweden and Switzerland announced the launch of the “Good governance and citizens engagement for justice, security, environmental protection and social cohesion in eastern Ukraine” initiative. The initiative will support strengthening of the region’s governance and promote social cohesion until 2022 under the United Nations Recovery and Peacebuilding Programme.
The conflict in eastern Ukraine, dragging into its fifth year, has had a significant impact on civilians, including over 3,300 men, women and children killed, up to 9,000 injured since 2014, 1.5 million people internally displaced and many others facing challenges of living in conflict-affected areas.
This breakdown in trust can only be overcome by job creation, poverty alleviation, anti-corruption measures, law enforcement and judicial reform, and the promotion of human rights. That’s why the “Good governance and citizens engagement for justice, security, environmental protection and social cohesion in eastern Ukraine” initiative will be fully integrated into the United Nations’ Recovery and Peacebuilding Programme. The overall contribution of Denmark (US$ 9.045 million), Sweden (US$ 3 million) and Switzerland (US$ 2 million) of US$14.045 million marks the beginning of efforts to resolve these key issues in Donetsk and Luhansk oblasts.
In the words of Victor Munteanu, the manager of UN’s Recovery and Peacebuilding Programme, “the trust of citizens in conflict-affected areas in governmental institutions will improve and they will feel safer if administrative, law enforcement and security capacity are strengthened, and it becomes easier for them to access justice and environmental protection. This project will help to support these changes.”
Sweden and Switzerland, which over the last 3.5 years have co-funded RPP interventions, wish to build on progress achieved and continue strengthening the region’s governance and promoting social cohesion. In addition, with this funding, Sweden intends to support activities to improve the region’s environment. Denmark’s Ukraine Peace and Stabilization Programme for 2018-2021, commits it to the region’s stability and good governance. It wishes to contribute funding, through its Peace and Stabilization Fund, to actions particularly aimed at improving justice and community security.
The UN Recovery and Peacebuilding Programme (RPP) addresses priority needs in eastern Ukraine after armed conflict erupted in the spring of 2014. The Programme is intended to strengthen community security and social cohesion, support the economic recovery of conflict-affected communities, and further the implementation of decentralization and healthcare reforms in government-controlled areas of Donetsk and Luhansk regions.
The RPP is being implemented by four United Nations agencies: UNDP, UN Women, the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).
The Programme is supported by nine international partners: the European Union, the European Investment Bank and the governments of Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Sweden, Switzerland, and Japan. Its total budget for 2019-2022 is over USD50 million.