Emergency Contraception Rushed to Ukraine

'The timeframe for treating victims of sexual violence is really essential'
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Apr 29, 2022 1:11 PM CDT
Emergency Contraception Rushed to Ukraine
Journalists take pictures next to a mass grave in Bucha, in the outskirts of Kyiv, Ukraine, Sunday, April 3, 2022.   (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)

Aid groups are rushing thousands of doses of emergency contraception to Ukraine amid reports that large numbers of Ukrainian woman are being raped by Russian troops. The International Planned Parenthood Federation says it has sent nearly 3,000 doses of the "morning-after pill" to Ukraine and other groups are doing what they can to boost supplies, the Guardian reports. Julie Taft of IPPF says the group is also collecting supplies of medical abortion pills, which can be used during the first 24 weeks of pregnancy. "The timeframe for treating victims of sexual violence is really essential," Taft says.

Joel Mitchell from aid organization Paracrew says most of the demand for emergency contraception is coming from hospitals in regions where large areas are occupied by Russian troops, the Telegraph reports. "There is a demand for emergency contraception, but very rarely from hospitals in the west. It is mostly hospitals to the east, in Kharkiv, Mariupol, those regions," Mitchell says. "As soon as we made contact with hospitals in those regions, we had standing orders for that medication." Refugees fleeing Ukraine have had trouble accessing emergency contraception in Poland and other countries with strict laws, reports the Guardian.

Earlier this month, Ukraine's ombudswoman for human rights said girls and women kept captive in a house in Bucha when Russian troops occupied the Kyiv-area town had been "systematically" raped and nine of them were pregnant. Doctors examining bodies found in mass graves in the region say they have found evidence some women were raped before they were killed, the Guardian reported earlier this week. Liz Truss, Britain's foreign minister, said Friday that the country will send a team to Ukraine to gather evidence of war crimes including rape, reports Reuters. "It’s done to subjugate women and destroy communities and we want to see it stopped," Truss said. (More Russia-Ukraine war stories.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.