The World Health Organisation (WHO) expressed concern on Sunday at the critical shortage of oxygen supplies in Ukraine and called for the creation of safe corridors through which urgently needed medical supplies can be transported, Belga News Agency reports.
“It is imperative to ensure that lifesaving medical supplies – including oxygen – reach those who need them,” WHO urged in a statement issued on Day Four of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
“These supplies would need safe transit, including via a logistics corridor through Poland,” WHO Executive Director Tedros Ghebreyesus and Regional Director for Europe Hans Kluge said in a joint statement.
According to WHO, the oxygen supply situation “is nearing a very dangerous point” in Ukraine, with trucks unable to transport oxygen between plants and hospitals. “The majority of hospitals could exhaust their oxygen reserves within the next 24 hours” and some have already used up theirs, the organization noted.
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With a humanitarian crisis looming in Ukraine, the UN called last week for safe, unhindered access for humanitarian aid there, a request reiterated by many countries and Pope Francis.
WHO said it was “very worried” for Ukraine’s civilians, hundreds of thousands of whom have already fled the country.