It has been a year since the war in Ukraine began. We have repeatedly reported on Luxembourg's actions in helping refugees and supplying arms and equipment. Here we gather a retrospective of key events.
After February 24 of 2022, Europe faced a great flood of people fleeing their homes and countries in an attempt to escape doom and destruction.
The Grand Duchy promptly set up temporary housing facilities and launched an integration program for new arrivals. By mid-March, the number of Ukrainians arriving in Luxembourg had already exceeded 2,500. This number continued to grow, exceeding 5,000 by the end of the year. Obviously, the first wave of newcomers and refugees came in the early spring, then the flow weakened, but new people continued to arrive.
The Luxembourg activists, besides accommodation, also organized special language courses, allocated children to schools, and even published a special Ukrainian-Luxembourg dictionary.
Ukrainkrich was also selected as the word of the year.
Eventually, the aid didn't stop at just helping the newcomers. The humanitarian element is just as important as the readiness to accept relocated people.
The Luxembourg Red Cross has raised a record amount of donations in the first months. In five weeks alone, more than 2 million euros were collected. By the end of the year, the number of Ukrainians who received aid exceeded the population of Luxembourg itself.
Non-profit organizations also got involved. The largest and best known, LUkraine has purchased and sent 10 ambulances to Ukraine. You can read more about LUkraine's activities in our article. The organizations created by Russians are not left out, either. For example, RUHelp organization that we covered in one of our interviews.
Another 14,000 euros was raised at a charity event. The entire amount went to support entrepreneurs who were forced to leave Ukraine.
The European Union and Luxembourg in particular have worked out several financial aid packages over the past year. One of the largest, for 9 billion euros, has been negotiated this summer.
The EU, on the other hand, regularly expands economic sanctions against Russia. For example, Luxembourg has arrested 4.3 billion euros linked to Russian businesses and individuals.
European sanctions have limited exports and imports from Russia and cut off the country from the SWIFT system. Now the 10th package is being prepared, which will restrict the supply of dual-use goods to the country.
Despite the sanctions, Luxembourg also did not stop providing visas to Russians.
Luxembourg's position on military issues has been clear since the first days of the war: the Grand Duchy will not send its own troops. However, together with the EU, it has been regularly sending weapons and equipment to Ukraine.
Luxembourg sent several Humvees to the war zone on its own initiative as well.