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Ukraine: Racism Reported As Black People Struggle To Flee War Zone

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Ukraine: Racism Reported As Black People Struggle To Flee War Zone

Allegations of Black people being stopped from fleeing Ukraine have been reported, as the Russian invasion continues.

Footage shared to social media shows African migrants being stopped from boarding trains to flee the country.

Nigeria's government has condemned the reported treatment of its citizens and those from other African countries leaving Ukraine.

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In one alleged incidence of racism, Osarumen, a Nigerian father-of-three who has been living in Ukraine since 2009, claimed he and his family were told to leave a bus that was headed over the border and were told 'no Blacks'.

He and his family were forced to get off the bus, and said that since the incident it had been difficult to 'focus' as normal, as per the Independent.

He said, 'In all of my years as an activist, I have never seen anything like this. When I look into the eyes of those who are turning us away, I see bloodshot racism; they want to save themselves and they are losing their humanity in the process.'

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Osarumen continued to condemn the treatment of Africans at the border, adding, 'I cannot imagine a scenario where white Ukranians would ever be denied asylum so how they’re treating us is unwarranted. It’s baseless.'

Black students are among those reportedly being blocked from leaving the country, with Nigerian president Muhammadu Buhari saying that of the 4,000 Nigerians in Ukraine, most were students.

President Buhari said in a tweet regarding the reports, 'All who flee a conflict situation have the same right to safe passage under the UN Convention, and the colour of their passport or their skin should make no difference.'

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One Nigerian student, Ruqqaya, claims she was told to wait for Ukrainians to be let through first at the Medyka crossing into Poland, as per the BBC.

She said she watched as busloads of white people crossed the border, while only a small number of Africans were let through.

After hours of waiting, Ruqqaya was finally allowed to cross and made her way to Warsaw, where she then flew back to Nigeria.

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So far over 500,000 Ukrainians are thought to have fled the county amid the war with Russia, as per the BBC.

If you have been affected by any of the issues in this article and wish to speak to someone in confidence, contact Stop Hate UK by visiting their website www.stophateuk.org 

If you would like to donate to the Red Cross Emergency Appeal, which will help provide food, medicines and basic medical supplies, shelter and water to those in Ukraine, click here for more information 

Featured Image Credit: Alamy/@LHreports/Twitter

Topics: News, Russia, Ukraine, World News, Racism

Shola Lee
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