By Enyichukwu Enemanna
Ukraine has appealed to homes in UK playing host to its citizens as refugees for continued “generosity” and “patience”, saying Ukraine needs “much more” help from Britain as Kyiv fights back against Moscow’s invasion.
Ukraine ambassador to UK, Vadym Prystaiko while expressing fear that President Vladimir Putin’s plan to mobilize 300,000 Russian reservists could amount to “something formidable”, the ambassador said people who found refuge in the UK through the Government’s sponsorship scheme continue to need support.
“We hoped to reach a six-month period by the sponsorship agreement between most of the UK citizens and Ukrainians who came here,” the ambassador said while addressing a fringe event hosted by Labour Friends of Ukraine in Liverpool.
“I just hope that the generosity, tolerance, kindness, patience of these people will allow us to engage with Ukrainians who still need some support here.”
He added: “Still we need support here, helping these people to go through the most difficult times of the war.”
In March, the Government launched the Homes for Ukraine scheme so people could sponsor refugees fleeing the war-torn country by offering a spare room or home for at least six months.
Ministers have since faced calls to consider increasing the monthly thank-you payments to hosts who extend their offer beyond the initial period they committed to.
Mr Prystaiko said it should be Russia that pays to rebuild Ukraine.
“I know there are so many generous people in nations around the globe, who told us, ‘don’t worry guys, we will help you to rebuild’. I believe the Russians have to pay for this, not you, not your taxpayers’ money,” he said.
But he said Ukraine needs “much more” help from the UK.
“This assistance is needed again and again and again,” he added.
The ambassador said the partial mobilisation of Russian reservists looks to be “something formidable”.
“We are adults here and I have to be frank with you,” he said.
“We obviously understand that three, four, five (hundred) thousand people Russia has promised to mobilise… this make a difference in the battlefield.
“Yes, Russians will struggle to re-arm them, feed them, equip them, and most of these people are not fit for… service. But (the) sheer mass of these people is something formidable.”