According to UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi, more than 1.5 million individuals leaving Ukraine have crossed into neighboring countries in the previous ten days.

The historic figure comes as the crisis in the east escalates, with shelling and bombing targeting several major cities, including Kharkiv and Chernihiv.

The UN High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi tweeted: “More than 1.5 million refugees from Ukraine have crossed into neighbouring countries in 10 days – the fastest-growing refugee crisis in Europe since World War II.”

Moldova President Maia Sandu said more than 240,000 of those refugees had crossed into the country since the start of the Russian invasion.

Meanwhile, France has urged the United Kingdom to do more to assist Ukrainian refugees attempting to cross the Channel from Calais. On Sunday, French Interior Minister Gerald Darmanin said it was “inhumane” of Britain to turn away refugees arriving in the French port city who did not have a legal visa.

Also on Sunday, the Ministry of Defence stated that Russian forces have targeted “populated locations” in Ukraine in order to demoralize the population.

The latest intelligence update said: “The scale and strength of Ukrainian resistance continue to surprise Russia. It has responded by targeting populated areas in multiple locations, including Kharkiv, Chernihiv and Mariupol. This is likely to represent an effort to break Ukrainian morale. Russia has previously used similar tactics in Chechnya in 1999 and Syria in 2016, employing both air and ground-based munitions. Russian supply lines reportedly continue to be targeted, slowing the rate of advance of their ground forces. There is a real possibility that Russia is now attempting to conceal fuel trucks as regular support trucks to minimise losses.”

It comes as the World Health Organization (WHO) confirms that at least six people were killed in Ukraine as a result of “multiple” attacks on healthcare facilities.

WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a quick message on Twitter:

 “Attacks on healthcare facilities or workers breach medical neutrality and are violations of international humanitarian law.”

It followed an announcement from the official WHO accounts which said: “As of today, WHO has published 6 verified reports of attacks on health care in #Ukraine. More reports are being verified.

“WHO strongly condemns these attacks that caused 6 deaths & 11 injuries. At least 6 health workers, working tirelessly to provide urgent medical care, were injured in the attacks in Ukraine. Health workers must be able to provide care in a safe & protected environment, without disruption from acts of violence.”

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