KYIV, Ukraine — Russia’s assault on Ukraine has forced more than 10 million people to abandon their homes, the United Nations said, with the scale of the humanitarian disaster showing little sign of easing as Moscow presses its attack with missile strikes and artillery fire.
“The war in Ukraine is so devastating that 10 million have fled—either displaced inside the country, or as refugees abroad,” the U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi said on Sunday. That means almost a quarter of the country’s prewar population has been uprooted.
Roughly 3.4 million people have left Ukraine since the Russian offensive began Feb. 24, mostly women and children bound for Poland, according to the U.N., which says the number of refugees could reach 4 million. The flow of people has eased in recent days, but still tops 50,000 refugees a day, according to the latest U.N. figures.
Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin said Sunday that Russia’s military had been deliberately targeting population centers because President Vladimir Putin’s campaign had stalled in the face of an effective Ukrainian defense and counterattack.
“He’s not been able to achieve the goals that he wants to achieve as rapidly as he wants to achieve them,” Austin told CBS News. “It’s had the effect of him moving his forces into a wood chipper.”
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