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Reuters: Ukraine starts to rebuild towns and cities amid Russia’s war

Hotel in Kharkiv, northeastern Ukraine, damaged by a Russian missile attack on 10 January 2024. Photo: Suspilne Kharkiv

In Ukraine, six settlements are undergoing reconstruction as part of a pilot program funded by the state. Reuters has reported that the initiative aims to advance the necessary skills and experience required for a broader reconstruction endeavor that lies ahead.

Ukrainian officials say towns and villages require an urgent recovery from the consequences of Russia’s war and express concerns that a delayed effort could lead to the permanent exodus of millions of Ukrainians to Europe.

“We’re fighting for every person who should return; for every child who needs to return and build their future here,” said Mayor of Trostianets Yuriy Bova.

The city in Sumy Oblast, included in the reconstruction project, suffered extensive destruction due to Russian attacks.

Currently, Ukraine is planning to rebuild many buildings in Trostianets – from cafes and libraries to factories, schools, and hospitals, aiming to make life better for every resident in the city.

In October 2023, Prime Minister Shmyhal said that more than $1.6 billion had been earmarked from the fund for reconstruction. The pilot projects received about $86 million last year, though the 2024 budget has not yet been set, a spokesperson for the reconstruction agency said.

Kyiv also said it planned to finance the projects by a state fund comprised mainly of seized Russian assets.

Earlier, the US House of Representatives had approved a bill on the confiscation of frozen assets owned by Russian sanctioned entities and individuals. The seized funds had been proposed to be directed towards providing additional military and humanitarian aid to Ukraine.

In December 2023, the US proposed a plan to its G7 allies to confiscate $300 billion in Russian assets. In its turn, Russia denounced the freeze as a violation of the basic principles of reserve security, hired international law firms, and commissioned expert views to defend its interests in courts.

Related:

Related:

White House: US aid to Ukraine stopped while Russian strikes only intensify
Biden: “Failure to support Ukraine is just absolutely crazy”
Biden calls on Congress to “stand with Ukraine” as Putin “banking on” US aid failure
FT: G7 working groups explore options to confiscate Russian assets
G7 nations lean towards seizing Russian assets
US Congress approves bill on transfer of Russia’s frozen assets to Ukraine

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