The World Council of Churches (WCC) signed a letter of petition from the Pan African Women’s Association calling for equal treatment of black and brown people stranded at the Ukrainian border.
The letter is also supported by various parliamentarians, civil societies, and activists from across the globe.
“In such crises, one would expect the affected population to receive equal and unbiased humanitarian aid irrespective of colour, race, or place of origin,” reads the letter. “Unfortunately, according to reports reaching us, this is not the case.”
The petition highlights the plight of black and brown people in Ukraine who are being systematically excluded from humanitarian evacuation operations.
“Even though Africans make up twenty percent of Ukraine’s international student population, there is an absence of representative embassies in Ukraine,” reads the petition. “On social media, one African student described watching fellow Africans and children being violently removed from the train crossing the border while space was provided for domestic animals.”
On the other hand, white Ukrainians have been allowed to go through the border without restrictions, the petition notes. “Therefore, we urgently need to amplify and condemn the differential treatment of the black and brown people and white Ukrainians,” the letter reads.