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Foreign Policy Research Institute

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Ukraine in overcoming global pandemic

The emergence of the coronavirus pandemic has made adjustments to the world system of international relations, so now Ukraine and other world states are joining forces in combating COVID-19  global pandemic. And on March 10, 2020, in the context of the spread of coronavirus in the world, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine established operational headquarters in order to coordinate the work of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, relevant authorities and international organizations with the purpose to protect Ukrainian citizens abroad and provide up-to-date information on the worldwide spread of COVID-19. The headquarters was established on the initiative and under the chairmanship of the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, Dmytro Kuleba. "Coronavirus is fast and dangerous. Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, on the contrary, must be fast to guarantee the safety of our citizens. That is why today I have established an operational headquarters and operational information pages at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine. Firstly, to ensure that our citizens, wherever they are, receive the necessary information in time and do not rely on unreliable sources. Secondly, so that every citizen of Ukraine feel protected by the Ukrainian state, which will provide the necessary support and assistance. I will personally chair the headquarters," the Minister said.

The headquarters also include State Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, Director of the Consular Service Department, Director of the Department of International Organizations, Directors of the Territorial Departments, spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, other officials of the Ministry. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has also created special pages in social networks to provide up-to-date information about the work of the headquarters and the spread of COVID-19 in the world. According to Dmytro Kuleba, the main goal of the operational headquarters is to coordinate the work of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with the relevant authorities in Ukraine and representatives of international organizations to provide assistance to Ukrainian citizens who are abroad in the territories affected by coronavirus. This goal, in turn, also provides for timely and reliable information about the development of the situation in regions and states of the world, travel advices, and so on.[1]

On April 17, 2020, Deputy Prime Minister for European and Euro-Atlantic integration of Ukraine, Vadym Prystaiko met with international partners from the WHO, the UN and the European Union as part of a single mechanism for coordinating international assistance in combating the spread of coronavirus. "Ukraine is an active participant in the exchange of assistance to overcome the COVID-19 pandemic, including flights delivering cargo, medical alcohol for disinfectants, and the exchange of experience between Ukrainian and EU doctors.

At the same time, the government is directing all available resources to сombat coronavirus, including the establishment of а stabilization fund of the state budget of more than 64 billion hryvnias. But sometimes national resources are lacking, and this problem is typical not only for Ukraine, but for many world states," Vadym Prystaiko said. He stressed that the generalized requirements  to combat the coronavirus pandemic will allow to avoid duplication of information and costs, and improve Ukraine's interaction with the international community, both within the framework of existing support programs and new initiatives, including humanitarian, financial and logistical assistance.[2]

Therefore, in the conditions of rapid growth of the coronavirus epidemic, Ukraine actively helps international partners. For example, on April 4, 2020, two dozen specialists from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Ministry of Health went on a humanitarian mission to Italy, which is currently the most affected by the coronavirus pandemic in the European Union. Within a few days, Ukraine also sent humanitarian aid to Italy – a special cargo of disinfectants. Italian Ambassador to Ukraine, Davide La Cecilia expressed gratitude to the President of Ukraine, Volodymyr Zelensky, Minister of Internal Affairs, Arsen Avakov and Minister of Health, Maksym Stepanov for the necessary assistance and support to Italian doctors.[3]

Ukrainian assistance to Italy is also a way to show solidarity with a state that has great importance within the EU and NATO and influence on making important decisions for Ukraine. Despite the fact that Ukraine is combating coronavirus in its own state, and Ukrainian diplomats and consuls are promptly helping their citizens, we do not forget about those who affected by the pandemic. After all, mutual assistance and understanding of the need to put off strained relationships and conflicts are the most important things during an epidemic. The world must stand together to overcome COVID-19.


[1]Міністерство закордонних справ України. Дмитро Кулеба створив в МЗС оперативний штаб задля реагування на поширення коронавірусу у світі та захисту українських громадян за кордоном:

[2]Кабінет Міністрів України. Вадим Пристайко: Україна є активним учасником взаємообміну допомоги з міжнародними партнерами для подолання пандемії COVID-19:

[3]Главком. 20 українських лікарів вирушили на допомогу Італії: